Limiting added sugars in your diet is important for overall health and reducing risk of chronic diseases like obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. Here are 10 easy food swaps you can make to cut back on added sugars:
Swap sugary breakfast cereals for oatmeal
Choose plain, steel-cut oats and add your own fresh fruit for natural sweetness. Add a protein source like almond butter or chopped nuts for extra energy.
Swap flavored yogurt for plain Greek yogurt
Greek yogurt is much higher in protein that other types of yogurt. Always choose plain and top with fresh berries and a sprinkling of nuts or seeds. Avoid added syrups.
Swap candy or chocolate for fresh fruit
Choose oranges, strawberries, or green apples to satisfy a sweet tooth. If you really want chocolate, have a small piece of dark chocolate, preferably low sugar or sweetened with Stevia.
Swap energy and granola bars for nuts and dried fruit
Look for bars with no added sugars if you must have a bar.
Swap sweetened applesauce for unsweetened applesauce
Sprinkle with cinnamon for extra flavor. Or better yet, eat a whole green apple. You are almost always better off eating whole fruit.
Swap fruit juice or soda for sparkling water with lemon or lime
Don’t consume liquid calories. Most sodas and even fruit juices have more than a day’s worth of sugar in each serving.
Swap sugary coffee drinks
Drink black coffee or coffee with a dash of milk or unsweetened plant milk.
Avoid sweetened cereal bars, muffins and pastries
Instead eat multi-grain bread with nut butter and fresh fruit. I like to make a flatbread with oatmeal, water and salt. I put almond butter with cinnamon and fresh fruit like strawberries and blueberries on it for a satisfying breakfast.
Swap canned fruit packed in syrup for whole fruit
An even better choice is whole fruit, preferably in season and local. If it was grown locally, it didn’t have to travel all around the world to get to you and will be better tasting, fresher and more nutrient dense.
Swap sweet condiments for condiments with no added sugar
Condiments like barbecue sauce, sweet chili sauce and ketchup contain loads of added sugar. Choose replacements like salsa with no added sugar as an alternative.
Making these simple food swaps can reduce your added sugar intake substantially while still enjoying delicious and satisfying foods. Limiting added sugars will help you retrain your taste buds as well as improve energy levels, weight, and overall health. It’s the way I overcame my cravings and lost 135 pounds. If you need support, I’m happy to help.
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