Sugar isn’t the worst substance in the world. In moderation, it can form a part of a healthy diet. However, when it comes down to it, the majority of us don’t eat sugar in moderation – we consume excessive amounts on a day to day basis.
If you consume a couple of hot drinks with added sugar, fizzy drinks, or juices, you can quickly exceed your daily allowance. That’s before we consider sweet treats, such as chocolates, jellies, cakes, and biscuits. But why should we cut down the amount of sugar we eat and how can we actively reduce its presence in our diets?
Why Do We Like Sugar?
It’s rare that you find someone who cannot stand the sweetness of a little sugar. So why do we tend to like sugar so much? Well, evolutionary theorists generally argue that in the past, our ancestors desired sweeter fruits as this indicated that they were ripe and ready to eat. Ripe fruits contained more energy and would fuel us for longer periods of time. So in some ways, sugar could prove beneficial. However, nowadays, sugar is so mass produced that we are eating much more of it than our ancestors would have ever eaten.
Sugar in fruit comes hand in hand with benefits. However, the foods that sugar is incorporated into nowadays tends to also have low nutritional value or high fat content – meaning that the more sugar you are eating, the more junk food you’re eating.
How Sugar Affects Us
Sugar can have a detrimental impact on our overall health and wellbeing in various ways. Here are just a few reasons that we should cut down the amount we incorporate into our diets.
- Sugar wreaks havoc on our oral and dental health. It essentially provides the bacteria in our mouth with easily digestible energy, giving it the fuel to proliferate. This can lead to tooth decay, toothache and the need for consequent dental procedures.
- Sugar does not contribute any essential vitamins or nutrients into our diet. When you consume sugar, you are essentially consuming empty calories.
You can find out more about the health benefits of cutting out sugar here.
Cutting Down on Sugar
So, how can you cut down the amount of sugar you are eating and drinking? Here are a few steps to consider.
Drink More Water
Switch sugary drinks for plain water. Sure, plain water might not taste quite as good as other options, but it doesn’t taste bad. Not only can opting for water reduce the amount of sugar in your diet, but it can help you to meet your daily recommendation of eight glasses a day and keep you thoroughly hydrated too.
Change Your Snacks
The majority of sugar we eat tends to be in snacks rather than our main meals. So, reconsider the types of snacks that you purchase. Instead of reaching for a biscuit, cake, or chocolate bar, choose a healthier savory option. Olives, nuts, and seeds will all be a whole lot healthier for you.
As you can see, having a little sugar now and then isn’t the end of the world, but there are healthier alternatives out there. Try incorporating the advice above in your lifestyle so you can cut the excess amount of sugar from your diet.