Lisa Dunbar is a health and nutrition coach from Dundalk
There has been a lot of controversy surrounding sugar recently. The main issues are
The World Health Organisation recommends that we consume a maximum of about 25g (roughly 6 teaspoons) of “added sugar” per day. It is reported that in Ireland we consume on average quadruple that amount! I also regularly meet people who consume over 10 times that amount!
By the way, “added sugar” means sugar that has been added to food either by you (e.g. in your tea) or by the food manufacturer (i.e. in the ingredients). It also includes fruit juices (NOT whole fruits) and sugar substitutes such as honey and syrups.
Here are a few tips in case the recent hype has got you thinking about cutting down on your sugar intake:
#1 Don’t Drink Your Sugar
The first place I always encourage people to look when it comes to their sugar consumption is at their drinks. Most 500ml bottles of fizzy drinks contain about 13 teaspoons of sugar! That’s more than double your recommended daily intake…in one drink!
#2 Reign In The Sweet Treats
We are all aware that some of the most sugar-laden foods are things like sweets, biscuits, chocolate
#3 Have Healthy Snacks
I’m sure you’ve heard that you should never go food shopping on an empty stomach, right?
#4 Keep It Real
I’ve noticed more and more people turning to “diet” and “sugar-free” drinks and foods, which often contain artificial sweeteners. This is NOT the solution to the sugar epidemic! I feel very strongly that artificial sweeteners are not food, so we shouldn’t be eating them. Apart from that, what artificial sweeteners tend to do is reinforce our love of sweet things and make our taste buds and bodies crave them even more!
So remember, eat less sugar, cos you’re sweet enough already!
Lisa is a Nutrition and Health Coach based in Dundalk. Having used diet and lifestyle changes to help recover from physical and mental health challenges, Lisa is now on a mission to motivate others to live a healthier life. See: www.lisadunbarhealth.com/ or follow Lisa