Sugar vs Artificial Sweeteners: Less is Best–of Both!

April 8th, 2018 Posted by Blog, Updates No Comment yet

Sugar occurs naturally in healthy foods like fruit, milk and plain yogurt.

A healthy person, does not have to be concerned about eating 2 or 3 servings of these foods every day. Added sugar, on the other hand, is processed sugar, derived from sugar cane or sugar beets, that has been added to a food. For example, milk contains sugar naturally. It is called lactose. Chocolate milk not only contains the lactose, but extra sugar has been added to make it taste sweeter. We consume a lot of added sugar, so much so, that it contributes to many health problems including obesity, inflammation, heart disease, and cavities. You may not realize how many foods contain added sugar, like cereals, canned vegetables and peanut butter. We used to call this hidden sugar, but now, the new Nutrition Facts labels require that the amount of added sugar is listed.

The American Heart Association recommends that men limit added sugar to 9 tsp per day, which equates to 36 grams or 150 calories worth. For women, the limit is 6 tsp (25 grams equal to 100 calories).

Have you checked a soda label recently? A 20 oz bottle of Mountain Dew contains twice as much added sugar as is recommended for men and three times as much as for women!

Many people, in an effort to lose weight or manage their blood sugar, have switched from drinking sugary drinks to an artificially sweetened version. This makes sense because there are no calories in artificially sweetened drinks and no sugar that can cause a rapid rise in blood sugar for people with diabetes. However, artificial sweeteners have not turned out to be the solution. They will not reduce cravings for sweets and there is not evidence to show that people who drink diet drinks weigh less than those who don’t.

If you are at a loss for what to drink, try these simple tips:

Read the Nutrition Facts labels. Limit added sugar to 36 grams (9 tsp) for men and 25 grams (6 tsp) for women per day

If it helps, use diet drinks as stepping stones to wean off of the “liquid candy” (soda and other sugary drinks). But limit the artificially sweetened drinks to 20 oz per day.

Be sure not to use drinking a diet drink as an excuse for eating a candy bar or ordering a big burger

Staying hydrated helps reduce the craving for sweets, so drink plenty of water. If you haven’t developed a taste for plain water yet, try adding lemon juice, cut up fruit or mint to your water.

Eat 2-3 servings of fruit every day and you will likely not crave sweets as often

The American Heart Association recommends that men limit added sugar to 9 tsp per day, which equates to 36 grams or 150 calories worth. For women, the limit is 6 tsp (25 grams equal to 100 calories).

Have you checked a soda label recently?

This 20 oz bottle of Mountain Dew contains twice as much added sugar as is recommended for men and three times as much as for women!

Many people, in an effort to lose weight or manage their blood sugar, have switched from drinking sugary drinks to an artificially sweetened version. This makes sense because there are no calories in artificially sweetened drinks and no sugar that can cause a rapid rise in blood sugar for people with diabetes. However, artificial sweeteners have not turned out to be the solution. They will not reduce cravings for sweets and there is not evidence to show that people who drink diet drinks weigh less than those who don’t.

If you are at a loss for what to drink, try these simple tips:

Read the Nutrition Facts labels. Limit added sugar to 36 grams (9 tsp) for men and 25 grams (6 tsp) for women per day

If it helps, use diet drinks as stepping stones to wean off of the “liquid candy” (soda and other sugary drinks). But limit the artificially sweetened drinks to 20 oz per day.

Be sure not to use drinking a diet drink as an excuse for eating a candy bar or ordering a big burger

Staying hydrated helps reduce the craving for sweets, so drink plenty of water. If you haven’t developed a taste for plain water yet, try adding lemon juice, cut up fruit or mint to your water.

Eat 2-3 servings of fruit every day and you will likely not crave sweets as often

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