Shake the Sugar Habit...

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Posted by AttitudetoFood on Friday 4th of May 2012

How’s this for a statistic? DEFRA estimates that if we were to cut sugar intake by 1.75% a day, around 3,500 premature deaths could be prevented in the UK each year …and the good news is that it’s relatively easy to do just that with a little focus and some smart thinking…

First up by far the best way of reducing sugar intake is to remove the craving for it altogether and including sweet vegetables such as sweet potato, squash, carrots, sweet peppers on your plate is one hec of a good way of crowding them out proactively. If you need alternatives to table sugar though, here are five healthier options:

Maple syrup is both delicious and a good source of essential minerals including manganese and zinc both of which are important in building the immune system.

Stevia is new onto the market in the UK's a South American herb used as a natural sweetener for centuries and it has a zero glycemic index, zero calories and zero carbs. It's also 25-30 times sweeter than sugar so you need to use in much smaller quantities.

Agave nectar has a really pleasant taste and is about 20% sweeter than table sugar along with a low GI but don’t let that lead you into thinking you can have as much as you like because it has the same calorific value as normal sugar.

Date puree …get all the sweetness and natural fibre along with the nutrient value of this fruit (inc A and B group vitamins and amino acids). Just soak a handful of dates in boiling water for 15 minutes. Drain and blend in a food processor until smoothe.

Honey has a slightly lower GI than table sugar and if you buy it in it’s raw form, it has anti-bacterial, anti-viral and anti-fungal properties.

Xylitol is a natural sweetener found in many fruits and vegetables, including raspberries, plums, mushrooms and lettuce. Research shows that it actually reduces the amount of cavity-causing bacteria in the mouth too.

...remember these are processed, so 'everything in moderation' is a good guideline with any form of sweetener.

Being your own sugar detective is a really smart habit to get into too. Always check the nutrition panel on food labels and look at the ‘carbohydrates (of which sugars)’ so you know where the food you’re eating is at…

To give you some idea of what to look for, the Food Standards Agency highlights that:

* 15g sugar per 100g is high and
* 5g sugar per 100g is low.

It’s so possible to make wise, healthy choices and enjoy the food on your plate. All that’s needed is a little additional knowledge along with a pinch of planning and focus …otherwise known as a new Attitude to Food!

F.r.e.e. Shake the Sugar Habit Workshops and Tele-Class…

What's your relationship with sugar? Do you manage it ...or does it manage you? Most people are hooked on it ...manufacturers use it in many 'savoury' products and it's down as being as addictive as heroin so if you'd like to nail your habit or just reduce intake a little, join these friendly informative workshops and you'll get tips, tools and an action plan on how to come off of the white stuff.

Live workshop: 21 April at 6.45pm -7.45pm …Oxford Circus, London W1


Tele-Class: 18 June, 6.45pm – 7.45pm gmt …from the comfort of your own armchair!

Please email me for full access details to both events.


Read my previous post:
Food as Medicine | Bone Health...

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