What is sugar?

We eat too much sugar. A can of Coca-Cola is 10 teaspoon of sugar. That one can is almost double what you should be consuming! But what do we mean by sugar? 

You should keep your sugar intake to 6 or less teaspoons of sugar a day. A simple way to figure out sugar is to divide the grams of sugar by 4. A serving, 3/4 cup, of Cocoa Puffs is 10 grams of sugar. That means that one unsatisfying bowl of this cereal is about half of your daily sugar! But still, what is sugar?

Is all sugar bad? Added sugar is what to watch out for. The “sugar” in an apple is very different than the refined sugar that is added to processed foods. So even though an apple has about 20 grams of “sugar” that isn’t working against you. We’ve trended towards demonizing the term sugar without actually understanding what it is. Only concern yourself with added sugars

What does that mean? You can eat an apple and not worry about it adversely affecting your diet. You should eat fruits and vegetables to be healthy. If you’re trying to lose weight don’t worry about your sugar intake if your sugar is coming from natural foods like fruits and vegetables. A medium carrot, 3 grams of sugar, isn’t going to take you off your diet. If you cut all “sugar” out of your diet your food would lack several sections of the food pyramid. 

When you’re reading ingredient labels or tracking your food concern yourself less with the” sugar” line and question more where that sugar is coming from. If that sugar is naturally part of the fruit or vegetable don’t think of it as sugar. If the sugar is added, as it always is in processed foods, stay away from that item. 

It’s good to manage the ratio of food items, but don’t vilify the food choices that your body needs: fruits and vegetables. Your plate should be half fruit and vegetables which means you’re consuming plenty of “sugar” in a day. Plenty of “carbs” too. Don’t vilify the word. Vilify how that word is being used. Added sugar = villain. 

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