Thursday, September 5, 2013

Added Sugar

     With all the hype about how sugar is bad for your health, many consumers have tried to limit the amount of added sugars in their diets. This may sound simpler than it actually is. Americans are consuming sugar at a rate of 32 teaspoons of added sugar per day. Americans think they are making healthy choices when really added sugar is still present in the “healthy” foods they are choosing. Companies are making it harder and harder for consumers to read their labels. Agave syrup, brown rice sugar, dextrose, fructose, and many other names for sugar have been used on labels. When it comes down to it the body metabolizes all sugars the same way, so these other sugars are not necessarily healthier.
     So why is sugar so bad and what changes can be made to avoid eating so much of it? When the body has excess sugar it is stored in the liver and will eventually be converted to fat. For this reason too much added sugar leads to extra fat in the body. To avoid extra sugar in your diet some simple changes can be made. First, read the ingredients and try to avoid products with lots of added sugar. Second, try buying plain yogurt instead of flavored. You can add things to your yogurt for better flavor. Try berries! Apples, berries, and citrus fruits are good low sugar options as well as leafy greens. Last, if a dessert is really calling your name try to eat dark chocolate. By making these simple changes the amount of added sugar in your diet will be much more reasonable.

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