What are natural sugar substitutes
Natural sugar found in fruits and milk are considered better as they don’t just contain sugar but have fibre, vitamins, minerals and other nutritional contents. Fibre in the fruits makes us feel full and prevents overeating. Processed sugar doesn’t make us feel full and hence leads to overconsumption. Try eating whole fruits and not just the juice as it contains way more nutrients and fibre.
Honey has a lot of health benefits minerals and vitamins but it is still high in sugar and calorie dense. It has 64 calories in a single tablespoon so it may contribute to weight gain in high amounts.
Pure Maple syrup as a substitute is better than sugar as it contains more nutrients than sugar and has a lower glycaemic index but it still spikes up the blood sugar levels as regular table sugar. Sometimes corn syrup flavoured as maple syrup is sold which does not contain benefits of natural sugar and is just as bad.
Eat as much raw vegetables as much as you can. Fiber in them keeps you full and stops cravings.
I tried digging deeper on this topic and found a lot of articles which said that there is no research and evidence just yet which tells us that artificial sweeteners are hazardous for humans. The research done in 1970s on rats showed that it caused cancer in lab rats but many times research done on animals is not fully applicable to humans. Although we cannot ignore the fact that artificial sweeteners alter gut flora, are way sweeter than sugar and hence are more addictive than natural sugar. This is a very controversial topic and as a precaution should only be consumed by diabetics and not by healthy individuals as a substitute. Always remember natural form of food is better than the artificial ones.
Try quitting added sugar for a day
We have been told since kinder garden that “one thing at a time is the golden rule”. Try having no added sugar days once every 15 days or so. I know how difficult it is I am a sweet tooth myself.
Remember brain is the fattiest organ and uses most of the sugar. It will cause cravings and you may feel energy deprived as well. If you think you can’t handle at all being deprived of sugar and feel a way too anaemic consult your doctor before doing this.
I tried quitting sugar for a day and mind you I did that when I had delicious mango phirni in the fridge. I couldn’t snack on any of the readymade packaged food because all have sugar in them. You can’t even eat instant noodles that’s like my most favourite snack. So, you can only eat homemade food. There is practice where sugar is added in food to balance out all the spices…. yes, I am guilty of using that practice when I cook. I had to stop doing that too. But I did not have any other symptoms like headache or uneasiness so maybe I didn’t have sugar addiction and I did it just for a day so it wasn’t long term. I should try to do that in future for some days at stretch.
Read ingredients of food products
Don’t limit yourself to only reading calories on food products. Start reading ingredients at the back of the food labels. Read the percentage of sugar and other stuff used in it. Do this exercise even if you are not quitting sugar, just to be mindful of what you are putting in your body.
A research study which is linked below concluded that they found links between sugar consumption and diabetes were found which were not explained by obesity or physical activity.
Rome was not built over night. Moderation is the key here. WHO (world health organisation) recommends 50g of sugar per day. Try to limit yourself to only that amount or less.
Drink a lot of water
This is true for everyone who is trying to get fitter. Remember the phrase 8 glasses of water per day which is about 2 litre. Grab a 1 litre bottle and make a goal to drink two of those every day. This will flush out the toxins, make your skin clear, do wonders to your body.
Fittest models in the industry “The Victoria’s secret models” drink a gallon of water everyday which is 3.7 litre of water.
Eat homemade savoury food
Try cooking your own food and make some delicious savoury recipes which will make you forget about those sweets.
Try adding different spices in the food so that you won’t feel like you are following a boring diet. I have written a post about adding spices in your food the right way https://wordpress.com/block-editor/post/tutusediblelogic.food.blog/28.
Don’t overthink it just go ahead and be mindful about what you are eating.
Don’t be so hard on yourself
Don’t freak out if you gave in a little and had a bit of sweets. What happens often is that people cheat on their diet a little and then stop eating healthy altogether. Have cheat days every once in a while eat all the stuff you love and enjoy in moderation. Be happy even if you stayed on your decided sugar limit or didn’t eat sugar for just a day.
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Suez, J., Korem, T., Zeevi, D. et al. Artificial sweeteners induce glucose intolerance by altering the gut microbiota. Nature 514, 181–186 (2014). https://doi.org/10.1038/nature13793
MR Weihrauch, V Diehl – Annals of Oncology, 2004 – academic.oup.com