Sugar Awareness is Health Awareness.
Let’s make something clear: Sugar isn’t inherently evil. In fact, your body needs sugar to function properly. The problem is, most of us get too much of a good thing.
Sugar helps to fuel our body, but most of us consume more “fuel” than we need. To make matters worse, much of the sugar we consume is “added sugar” (sugar that doesn’t occur naturally in the food we eat). As a result, it comes without the benefits of natural sources of sugar, including fiber, vitamins, and minerals.
Think of it this way: If you bite into a wonderfully sweet strawberry or a juicy apple, you’re getting the right kind of sugar. If you chug a soda, spoon up cartoon-character cereal, or even squeeze ketchup onto your burger, you’re getting added sugar … and added sugar has been linked to health problems including diabetes, obesity, and heart disease.
So, obviously, cutting back on added sugar is good for you. Unfortunately, it’s not that easy: It’s estimated that about 80 percent of all food sold in the U.S. has added sugar. So, how can you cut back? Here are some quick tips:
• Eat more sources of natural sugar, including fruits and veggies.
• Cut back on processed foods.
• Drink more water instead of soda and sports drinks.
• Cut back on candy bars, donuts, and dairy desserts.
• Look for reduced-sugar recipes when cooking.