According to the World Health Organization, 25 grams of sugar is all we should consume in one day. It seems pretty reasonable at first, until you realize how many foods contain added sugar. Even healthy foods, such as fruit and vegetables contain natural sugars, and while they are far better than the added sugars in processed food, it still counts towards your total intake.
There are ways to reduce the amount of sugar you consume, and it starts with being aware of the ingredients in your foods.
Read Up and Write Down
First, check the nutrition label for how many grams of sugar the food or drink contains. This is a very easy way to measure how much sugar you consume. Carry around a small note pad and jot down each food and drink you consume with the amount of sugar grams each contains or take notes on your smart phone. Also, keep a small list of items that typically don’ t feature labels like fresh fruits and vegetables in the same notepad so you can still keep track of their sugar content for the day!
Water is Your Friend
One of the best things you can do for yourself is stay hydrated with water and not sugar-sweetened beverages, such as soda or fruit juice. Drinking one can of soda will already put you over the recommendations for your daily sugar intake. The best method is to steer clear of any sweet drinks, and stick with water.
Cutting sugar from your diet completely is not the only answer, especially because you need healthy sugar and carbohydrates for energy. Instead, focus on whole foods such as whole-grains, fruits, and vegetables will keep you satisfied and prevent you from experiencing a sugar high. Plus, these carbohydrates contain nutrients that are essential for staying healthy and protecting your immune system. Swapping bad sources of sugar with good sources of sugar will make you feel healthier and not deprived.
The accompanying slideshow is provided by fellow The Daily Meal editorial staff member, Dan Myers.