My Eat Yourself Fit Tips for Eliminating Sugar:
1 GIVE IT 21 DAYS
Twenty-one days is generally considered the appropriate length of time to break a habit. I find that total abstinence for this time is the best way to break the addiction, because even tasting a little bit of sugar can kick start the cycle all over again. After just a few weeks off it, refined sugar will taste synthetic and far too sweet.
2 READ NUTRITION LABELS
Always check the ingredients listed on packaged foods carefully and never believe the hype and marketing claims made on packaging. Aim to stock up on foods as close to their natural state as possible, such as fruit, vegetables, nuts, nut butters, seeds, quinoa, beans and legumes.
3 KEEP A FOOD DIARY
This can really help you to track and eliminate mindless snacking and where and when you’re adding extra sugar to your diet, such as in cups of tea and coffee or late-night cravings for sweet foods.
4 STAY HYDRATED
It can be easy to go through a busy day and forget to drink water. Get into the habit of sipping from a large bottle of water throughout the day. You need at least eight glasses of water per day and more in warm weather or if you’re exercising. Veggie juices and herbal teas count too, but caffeinated drinks act as diuretics and can dehydrate you.
5 BE PREPARED
Stock up on healthy snacks. When a sugar craving hits, try eating a piece of ripe fruit with a little nut butter or a handful of raw almonds. Green apples, citrus fruits and berries are lower in sugar than other types of fruit and make a great snack.
6 CHOOSE HOMEMADE OVER EATING OUT
This can be tricky for anyone out all day at work, but being in control of what goes onto your plate can make all the difference. Aim to pack your own lunches rather than grabbing a shop-bought sandwich. Get into the habit of requesting potentially sugar laden sauces, dips and dressings on the side and try not to tempt yourself with the bread basket or dessert menu.
7 STOCK UP ON CINNAMON
I sprinkle this sweet warming spice on a range of dishes and add it to smoothies because I find it brilliant for helping to curb sugar cravings. Plus it helps to fight fungal infections, boosts blood circulation and it’s a rich source of minerals and antioxidants. It’s also a good source of the mineral chromium, which helps to regulate blood sugar levels and the laying down of fat in your body.
8 CHEAT WITH A TREAT
No matter what type of eating plan you follow, if any, I think it’s important to reward healthy living with an occasional tasty dessert or sweet treat. All my desserts and sweet treat recipes are simple to make and free from refined sugar, trans-fats, artificial ingredients, gluten and dairy.