Diabetes has become one of the most common metabolic diseases in the last few years and affects millions of people around the world. While the disease might be hereditary, chances are that your sugar intake might be a bit too much. Also added sugar is one of the major causes of rising cases of diabetes.
According to the American Heart Association, the maximum amount of added sugar one should consume is 37.5 grams or nine teaspoons for men and 25 grams or six teaspoons for women.
If you have a sweet tooth and cannot really resist all those chocolates, fizzy drinks and sauces you could swap these for foods that have lesser added sugar. Here are a few changes you can make.
If you are someone for whom breakfast is a hurried affair and often includes foods like biscuits or cereals, you could swap it for toast and a nut spread, which is a good substitute for jam. You could also opt for wholegrain breakfast cereal instead of ones that come with added sugar.
Also instead of that spoon of sugar on your cereal, you could consider adding nuts and even fresh fruits. Oatmeal is a good cereal substitute. You could also top pancakes and waffles with fruits instead of the sugary syrups.
"Throw in some color for extra nutrients," Tami Ross, a diabetes educator in Lexington, told Health. Adding fresh tomatoes and spinach to your eggs is also a good option.
Instead of unhealthy junk food, opt for fresh home cooked meals. You could swap white bread and bagels for whole grain sandwiches and avoid the mayo. Also, limit the intake of ketchup and other sauces that contain added sugar. If you are a salad lover, it is a good thing to keep an eye on what dressings you are adding.
Olive oil and balsamic vinegar make for a good salad dressing.
A salad that consists of ingredients like kale, spinach and radish is healthy and also known to prevent spikes in blood sugar.
You could also opt for plain yoghurt instead of the fruit yoghurts that contain added sugar.
Ready to eat meals that take up quite a bit of the shelves at the departmental stores might be the convenient and easy option, but these meals often come loaded with preservatives that don't really make up for a healthy option. Instead, opt for fresh and simple meals that can easily be cooked in your kitchen.
Light vegetable soups are a good option. Yes, some veggies have natural sugar but they are definitely better than the canned soups. It is also better to make your own sauces for foods like pasta as canned sauces have high sugar and salt content.
Instead of munching on a granola bar every time you want to snack between meals, opt for almonds and plain cashews. Fresh fruits, which have natural sugar and plenty of fibre, are a better option than fruit juices. Fizzy drinks are definitely not the best option, instead, choose sparkling water.
Other swaps you could make are:
- Frozen grapes instead of ice creams and popsicles
- Fresh fruits instead of the canned ones soaked in syrup
- Popcorn instead of chips
- Salsa instead of cream dips
Avocado toast picture credit: kjokkenutstyr.net