Why Reducing Sugar is a Challenge
Why Sugar is Addictive
Growing up, you may have known about the common dangers associated with the overconsumption of sugar: diabetes, weight gain, high blood pressure, the list goes on. However, some people are often unaware of the addictive factor that is present in eating sweet foods, and this can lead to harmful, long-term health problems. Don't get us wrong — we're all guilty of indulging in delicious ice cream during the summer or sugary coffee to jumpstart our mornings every once in a while. In fact, treating ourselves with these treats is perfectly okay as long as we don't overdo it. But one of the reasons we tell ourselves "just one more" is because these foods and drinks affect our brains to want more. This is why people have trouble reducing sugar from their diet, even when they're actively trying. So, why is cutting out sugar so difficult?
You know that sense of accomplishment you get after completing a tough exercise or beating a difficult level on your favorite video game? That feeling is associated with a release of dopamine in the brain, and we all experience that same sensation whenever we consume sugar. Sadly, though, too much of a constant, unnatural dopamine release can wire the brain to crave it more and more, making cutting out sugar a challenge. Additionally, while it's taboo to address it as such, one study has shown that sugar addiction can be stronger than cocaine addiction. Fortunately, reducing sugar by changing our diet is far from impossible, especially when paired with Sweet Defeat products.
Common Foods With the Highest Sugar Content
If you're working on cutting out sugar from your diet, the first place to start is identifying the foods or drinks with the highest sugar content.
When people start a new diet, they typically stop or limit how much they eat or drink a certain item, such as candy bars, soda pops or donuts. But, getting on the path toward better health requires us to stop consuming more than one unhealthy food or beverage. Before you start reducing sugar from your daily intake, make sure you know exactly how much sugar you're putting into your body.
Foods or Beverages With the Highest Sugar Content
- Candy-blended milkshakes (85 grams per 12 ounce cup)
- Candy bars (54 grams per one bar)
- Cola (50 grams per 16 ounce bottle)
- Fast-food pancakes (45 grams per three pancakes)
- Cookies (36 grams per two cookies)
We understand that it will be moderately stressful when you stop eating or drinking these foods at first, but with strong discipline, you'll be cutting out sugar in no time!
Hidden Sources of Sugar
While it's fairly easy to see which items contain a lot of sugar, there are a lot of foods and drinks that fly under the radar with deceptive packaging and advertising.
It's important that you understand the following statement: sugar is added to just about everything. Even the "healthiest" items, like cereals and juices with vitamins and minerals, contain some form of added sugar. And, some foods like barbecue sauce contain hidden sugar as their first ingredient or contain corn syrup, fructose or dextrose — all variations of sweeteners. That's why you must pay very close attention to the nutrition label on each product you purchase at the grocery store.
We don't want to rain on your parade, but if you want to start reducing sugar, glance at the nutritional info of these eight foods or drinks with hidden sources of sugar before your next shopping trip:
- Low fat yogurt (45 grams of sugar per cup)
- Fruit juice (23 grams per cup)
- Granola (8 grams per bar)
- Canned pears (24 grams per cup)
- Chicken soup (3.8 grams per cup)
- Protein bar (23 grams per bar)
- Iced tea (22 grams per cup)
- Tomato sauce (10 grams per cup)
Tips for Cutting Out Sugar
Now that you understand how sweet some foods and drinks are, it's time to explore options for cutting out sugar more often from your diet.
We won't lie — reducing sugar from your daily intake will be a long road paved with obstacles. However, there are quite a few simple ways to achieve complete freedom from the grasp of sweeteners and live a happier, healthier lifestyle. Here are four quick tips to help you get started:
1. Distract Yourself With Healthy Distractions
This can be said about just about any bad habit, but forming new, healthier habits that distract you from sugar cravings can be truly beneficial. The moment you start feeling the need to eat a sweet candy or other treat, consider taking a relaxing bath, eating turkey or trying other methods to fight against sugar cravings
2. Read Nutrition Labels
One reason why people continue to be addicted to sugar is that they are unaware of the high sugar content in some of the food they currently consume. As we mentioned before, reading nutrition labels is a must when it comes to cutting out sugar. Once you notice that processed food you picked up has loads of added sugar, you'll be more likely to put it back on the shelf.
3. Try Sugar Substitutes
If you need to consume sugar to keep your blood sugar levels under control, start eating more foods with natural sugar substitutes. One tip you can start today is adding honey (in moderation) to your coffee or tea instead of sugar. Or, instead of loading up your pancakes with whipped cream and chocolate chips, simply opt for natural maple syrup.
4. Try Sweet Defeat Products
If you're still having trouble reducing sugar in your diet, give yourself an extra boost by trying our one-of-a-kind products at Sweet Defeat. Our powerful items are made to lessen cravings, which will lead to you cutting out sugar more frequently. Depending on your preferences, we offer mint or lemon lozenges, gum or spray. In no time, you'll be eating less sugar-filled foods and improving your overall wellness. Check out our products or contact us today if you have any questions!