Just in case you’ve been living under a rock, turns out a sugar addition is seriously bad for you! But let’s focus on the positives: the benefits of having less sugar in your diet.
This might seem counterintuitive as we all know sugar can give us an energy high. The thing is, this is a short term boost that is inevitably followed by a sugar crash. The yoyoing from low to high has a detrimental impact on our overall energy levels and can also negatively affect your sleep. Better quality sleep will mean your energy levels will be better throughout the day making it less likely you’ll reach for the lollies around 3pm.
A winning smile
It’s no surprise that sugar isn’t any good for our teeth, but actually seeing the effects can be pretty confronting. Check out this clip of 17-year-old Larry from That Sugar Film.
Sugar can damage collagen and elastin in our skin, causing wrinkles, sagging and rough texture. Ditch it for healthy, supple and young-looking skin.
More positive moods
A diet high in sugar has been linked to increased inflammation in the body. Among other health conditions, chronic inflammation has been linked to depression. You can check out the study here.
Better cognitive function
Our brain runs on glucose, but the fluctuations caused by the highs and lows (or a persistently high blood glucose level) brought on by sugar consumption can be associated with reduced brain function. You may feel “foggy” and have trouble with memory.
A healthy heart
A diet high in sugar may raise your risk of dying of heart disease even if you are at a healthy weight. Look after your heart by cutting down on the white poison.
How do I kick my sugar habit?
CHEFGOOD tips for quitting sugar:
- Remove temptations from the fridge and pantry. It’s easier to say ‘no’ to sugar when it’s not right in front of you.
- Stop buying high sugar foods, keep an eye out for anything processed (usually found in the middle aisles of the supermarket) that might have hidden sugars.
- Give cinnamon a try. Touted as a cure for sugar-cravings, you can add cinnamon to healthy desserts, your breakfast or even as a sprinkle on slices of apple.
- Eat more protein and good fats. Both of these things will keep you fuller for longer, making it less likely you’ll feel like hunting down the last Milky Way in the office.
- When a sugar craving hits do something else. You could make a cup of herbal tea or go for a walk instead.
- Pack a hard-boiled egg for the 3pm slump.
- Drink plenty of water. “Thirsty” can sometimes be confused with a sugar craving.
- Stress less! Try meditation, yoga or some deep breathing to deal with a stressful situation instead of reaching for the packet of lolly snakes.
- Choose a multigrain or brown (like rye) bread instead of white.
- Hand in hand with stressing less is getting enough rest. Good quality sleep helps keep your hunger hormones in check.
- Welcome the savoury life! Find healthy, savoury foods you enjoy and eat them instead of sugary treats or highly processed foods.
- Give your desserts a healthy twist by choosing recipes with less sugar and more flavour from fresh fruits, herbs and spices.
- Eat more whole fruits. Eating whole fruits, with the skin on when you can, will give you a fibre boost as well as impart lots of vitamins and antioxidants to your diet.
- Try a small handful of nuts instead. Packed with good fats, protein and fibre, nuts a much healthier alternative to a sugary snack.