By Julie Wilcox
My readers often ask me, “What is the easiest way to shave off a little weight?” Although there are many answers to this popular question, sugar slips into your diet unnoticed more than any other fat-building substance. Why is sugar bad for you? Not only does sugar bring on unwanted weight gain, but it can also be detrimental to your overall health causing hormonal and brain chemistry imbalances when consumed in large quantities. These 10 ways to stave off sugar will help you feel healthier, stronger and more vital.
- Appreciate the real flavor of coffee and tea. Nix all sweeteners.
- Limit your juice consumption to one 6oz.-8oz. glass a day.
- Make your own food at home as often as you can without using sugar.
- Avoid buying sauces and salad dressings for home. Rather, make them yourself with simply olive oil, vinegar, lemon, salt, and pepper. Be aware that eating out is a killer for this one. It is worth asking for the dressing on the side or for just olive oil and vinegar as your dressing.
- Watch your portion sizes. If you eat out regularly for work or social reasons, book your meals at restaurants where you know the portion sizes are small and the quality of the food and ingredients healthy.
- Stay away from processed/packaged foods. If you do eat them choose healthier ones like Lara Bars and Soy Chips. Check the ingredients of any foods you buy that have them–most do. Many health bars, cereal mixes, and other packaged snacks that might seem healthy contain molasses, cornstarch and other forms of glucose. Don’t eat these! It is best to choose one or two snacks you like most, keep them at home, and take one with you to work each day.
- Do not snack on fruit. If you eat fruit, it should be part of a meal. Juice counts as fruit so if you are drinking the one juice a day note this as a portion.
- Do not drink soda except for a diet soda as a special indulgence once a week. (But you should probably just ditch it altogether.)
- If you work a full daytime job try to stave off business lunches. Big mid-day meals often make all of the above impossible. If you can, bring your lunch to work. If this is not possible, buy your lunch at the same healthy place each day and eat the same thing most days, clearly sugar-free meal such as salad or soup (watch out with soups if you’re buying them).
- Do not deprive yourself! Choose one time a day to eat something sweet. This includes chocolate, baked goods, frozen yogurt…etc. and do not stray from this rule. This requires rejecting any offer during the day at work to have a piece of cake for someone’s birthday, a piece of chocolate sent to the office as a thank you…etc. I like to eat my dessert after dinner to avoid the possibility of doubling up on any given day.