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Easy Food Swaps to Help Reduce Your Sugar Intake

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5 MIN READING

Easy Food Swaps to Help Reduce Your Sugar Intake

Carbohydrates, fat and protein have each had their turn in being demonised in the media however research constantly shows there is nothing wrong with including them in your diet especially when it comes to weight loss. It is virtually impossible to avoid eating any one of these because hardly any foods contain only 1 nutrient, and most are a combination of carbs, fats and proteins in varying amounts.

Carbohydrates do seem to get the worse bashing in the media but there are a great source of energy and have been shown to have lots of health benefits. The only type of carb we should look at reducing are free sugars. 

These are the sugars added to food or drinks including in cereals, biscuits and cakes.

But never fear, we’re here to help you reduce your free sugar intake in ways you may not have even considered.

Breakfast time

The first meal of the day often contains a huge amount of free sugar as it’s hidden in cereals, yoghurts, jams and other spreads. 

Homemade cereals are simple to make and can be prepped the night before, and sweetened with sugar alternatives such as maple syrup, dates and coconut sugar. Try this quinoa porridge or these oat and chia pots.

Always look for plain or Greek style yoghurts over fruity ones that are loaded with sugar, and add your own chopped fruit instead. 

Even breakfast pancakes can be given the lower sugar treatment. Check out these honey and lemon crepes

Cooking sauces

Some brands of pasta, curry and stir fry sauces are heavily loaded with added sugars, but if you’re used to reading food labels, then finding the added sugars won’t be too hard to find. We don’t often check the labels of savoury sauces for sugar, it’s usually the fat content we’re looking for, so with a little habit change, you’ll find the brands that add less sugar. 

If in doubt, have a go at making your own low sugar pesto pasta or parsnip and cauliflower curry.

Ketchup

Two tablespoons of regular ketchup (which let’s face it, is a generous amount but who doesn’t love a big dollop of dip with our sweet potato dippers) contains almost 7g of sugar. When we consider that it’s recommended that we limit ourselves to no more than 30g of sugar a day, this is an awful lot of sugar in just a side dollop to our main meal.

But you can reduce that by choosing a low sugar version, or by making your own, which isn’t as daunting as it sounds. All you need is a 150g tube of tomato puree, five tablespoons of water, two tablespoons of cider vinegar, a pinch each of salt, garlic powder and cayenne pepper. Mix everything together and it’ll keep in an airtight jar for two weeks.  

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