I wanted to talk to you guys today about reducing sugar and easy strategies to do that. With holiday season upon us, you can still eat healthy and set yourself up for a great end of the year with what I’m going to share today.
WHY REDUCE YOUR SUGAR INTAKE
So first, why should we be concerned about reducing sugar? Because sugar is bad for your immune system. Sugar feeds the bad gut bacteria and leads to imbalances, which leads to inflammation and illnesses.
Sugar feeds the bad gut bacteria and leads to imbalances, which leads to inflammation and illnesses.
Sugar feeds cancer. It has all kinds of negative effects on the body and we can be setting ourselves up for a whole host of health issues. So if you are at all concerned about your immune system, looking at flu season, and you’re worried about ways to keep your body healthy, the best thing to do is reduce sugar. So what does that look like?
MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT FRUIT SUGARS
First of all, I want to just say very clearly, unless you are actively battling cancer, fruit is not a bad guy.
Yes, there is sugar in fruit, but it comes with so many nutrients and fiber that it is nothing like added sugar at all. Most of the time when I’m talking about avoiding sugar, I am talking about added sugar and especially artificial sweeteners. I am not talking about fruit sugar that is naturally occurring in the fruit.
HOW MUCH IS TOO MUCH SUGAR
Of course, the less the better. But a preferred goal when it comes to added sugar is keeping it under about 24 grams a day is great. And that can be challenging because sugar is hidden in 80% of the foods on the grocery store shelves. So you’ve got to read the label and know what you’re looking for.
I’m going to use a box of Mary’s Gone Crackers as an example. Look for total carbohydrates. Then it says dietary fiber, total sugars, and added sugars. What you’re looking at is the added sugars, you want to keep that number under 24 grams. Now not every food label will put that on there.
Some things to watch out for usually with high levels of added sugar:
- baked goods
- pre-packaged foods
- sauces and dressings
- flavored milk
- sodas, juices
- nut butters and spreads
Watch out if something says there’s zero grams of added sugar but it’s clearly a sweet food. Then look for artificial sweeteners on that label because they’re probably there.
PROBLEMS WITH ARTIFICIAL SWEETENERS
Artificial Sweeteners have their own host of problems as far as damaging your immune system and your gut. They can be the source of a lot of problems like:
- flare ups with chronic conditions
So I don’t recommend them either.
EASY WAYS TO REDUCE YOUR ADDED SUGARS
Start your day with a savory food for breakfast instead of a sweet food. When we start eating sweets we want to eat more sweets. So start with something that’s not super sweet.
Get the liquid stuff out of your life that has added sugar. Sodas, energy drinks and even fruit juice. When fruit juice is separated from the fiber and the rest of the nutrients it has the same effect as unnecessary sugar. Try to not get calories from your beverages.
If you’re going to drink coffee, drink it black; or tea, the same thing, without sugars. Some brands like Primal Kitchen make sauces and dressings with no added sugar. Give those a try.
Then if you’re going to have something with a sweetener if it can be maple syrup or honey instead of white or brown sugar. Eat naturally sweet foods like sweet potatoes and cinnamon to things. Squashes are really good at giving you that sweet factor without having added sugar, and the amount of nutrients that you get in a sweet potato or butternut squash is so good for your immune system.
My go-to sweet snack is medjool dates; they are delicious. There are a whole food. Yes, they’re higher in natural occurring sugar but it’s with fiber, iron, and a lot of other nutrients. Raisins are a good dried fruit snack choice because they’re like the only dried fruit that doesn’t have added sugar in it.
RESETTING YOUR PALATE
One of the best strategies I’ve ever used personally for reducing sugar in my life is to just go three days with no added sugar whatsoever. That was the first time ever that I drank black coffee so I could get through it. That was the biggest hurdle for me. But two days in I didn’t miss the sugar in my coffee anymore.
It reset my palate to the point where natural foods easily taste sweet. I really can taste the sweetness in vegetables like bell peppers. If you a periodically do just three days with no added sugar you can reset your palate to where you need a lot less sugar. It’s going to help reset you and it’s going to boost your immune system.
If you a periodically do just three days with no added sugar you can reset your palate to where you need a lot less sugar.
JOIN THE 10 DAYS CHALLENGE
If you need help to do this, I am starting my 10 Days 10 Years Younger Challenge on November 11th where we focus on many aspects of health. We’re going to be talking about how to reduce stress through the holidays, reducing emotional eating, and what’s a better strategy.
We’re going to be talking about prioritizing in your life the things that you would like to work on. Maybe it is finding healthier recipes. Maybe it’s adding daily exercise. Maybe it’s just reducing stress or finding more downtime to take care of yourself. Maybe it’s you wanting to start regular date nights with your spouse.
It’s a group program and it focuses on all areas of health, not just nutrition. Yes, nutrition is a huge, huge thing. But it’s not the only thing. And sometimes nutrition is very broad.
CUSTOMIZED SOLUTIONS FOR YOU
Maybe you specifically want to work on a problem you have like migraines. There are specific things we can do to help reduce migraines. Those things might not be what we’d do for somebody who has gastrointestinal symptoms or allergies. So it can be it can be individualized and that’s what I love about the challenge.
Everybody in the group is picking and choosing their top one or two priorities they want to work on. The strategies I teach you can be used for any priorities you have. We’ll be setting you up action steps and strategies for those.
If somebody else says I want to lose five pounds, we’re going to set them up for that. If somebody else just says I want to enjoy the holidays without tearing my hair out and going crazy. We’re going to work on stress reducing. So it’s a really great program.
It is only $39. People have great success with this program. That’s why I keep re-running it. I just love this program. It’s super fun. It’s only 10 days. It’s not like a long term commitment, but I know we got holidays coming right. So you’ll be done before Thanksgiving.
If you are interested, just send me an email at email@example.com and I’ll get you personally taken care of. Have a great day!