Natural sugar is the kind of sugar that occurs naturally in foods, such as the sugar in fruits and veggies or the ones in dairy products. Added sugar is processed sugar the manufacturer adds to packaged and processed foods.
The obvious added sugars are found in sugary treats like donuts, cakes and cookies. But did you know there are added sugars in almost all processed and packaged foods to up their flavor appeal? Here’s a list of foods that include added sugar that you may not be aware of:
Canned or jarred pasta sauce
Ketchup and other similar condiments
Breads (even whole wheat), rolls and other bread based products
Gluten free packaged snacks
Energy drinks (they are chock full of sugar)
Almost all canned food
Sweetened yogurt (this includes fruit on the bottom)
Refined (white) flour and products made with refined flour
(Thank you to ElizabethRider.com for this list)
So…now you know what to stay away from. What should I eat? How should I plan for the three days?
- First, pick three days in a row where eating 0 added sugar would be the easiest. For me, this is three workdays in a row, i.e. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday or Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday. Weekends are out because an unexpected get-together with friends or family can quickly derail all my best laid plans. I also have much more control of what I will eat for lunch because I pack it ahead of time. Can’t eat what I didn’t bring!
- Second, throw out or at least make it extra hard to get to any “added sugar” snacks in your home.
- Third, get online and search for low sugar or no sugar breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack ideas. You’ll need at least three of each meal idea and nine snack ideas. If you’re a Pinterest person, make yourself a board titled “no sugar meals” and pin your favorites.
- Fourth, make a grocery list that includes ingredients for your nine meals and nine snacks you have planned out. Also stock up on fresh fruits and veggies, raw nuts etc. in case you need a little extra something.
- Fifth, drink plenty of water during these three days. You should have at least 64 ounces of water each day. My suggestion is to drink ONLY water. Three days is not that long to go without some other type of drink. If you have to have coffee, drink it black and no sweetener in your tea. Okay, Stevia if you have to, but nothing else!
- Once you are done with your 3 days with no added sugar, keep track of your grams of sugar on food labels. Men should have no more than 37.5 grams and women should have no more than 25 grams daily. Will you stay under every day? Probably not, but the more days you can hit that goal, the better you will feel!
I usually do a 3 days, no added sugar challenge right after New Years Day. If you would like to join me this year go to my Facebook page, Sue Kauffman Fitness and like the page. I’ll be posting links to resources you can use and we will be supporting each other during the three days.
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