Hello My Bella Fit Divas
Those of you who live in Florida, hope you all are safe, getting back on track and starting to see the light after these crazy, unpredictable weeks of mother nature. Hurricane Irma. This has been my first experience of any hurricane and to experience a Cat 4…one of the worst to ever hit this area in 50 years. Needless to say, it has left imprints in more ways than one. The biggest lesson…and we hear it all the time and never expect it to happen to “us”…Life can change in the blink of an eye. I have learned to be more open-minded, more flexible and go truly go with the flow of each and every day AND be MORE prepared! Until you actually go through the motions, you really never know how prepared you MUST be.
I was going to send this blog out 2 weeks ago… and then the warnings and evacuations started and decided to wait, because there were other things to be more concerned with.
NOW…I can tie this very Important topic about sugar into this stressful time, because when any tragedy hits…we ALL tend to consume and indulge more on heavy sugar foods to cope with stress. I have been hearing it all week from my clients. Laura….I have gained X amount of pounds because I ate so much crap and drank so much more than usual and now feel like shit. Ok….Understandable!!!! Even more motivation to change.
Lets get started!!
FACT: Most Americans consume way too much sugar on a daily basis. It has been shown that sugar can be as addictive as cocaine, nicotine and even heroin. What???!!
Very few things get my inner italian diva attitude going….(ok, maybe more than a few!), but the HUGE problem with too much sugar consumed and half of it is hidden due to lack of knowledge or discussion gets me so fired up for many reasons.
We get stuck on trends about Fats and Carbs and Proteins…but what about sugar??
Like most of us…we want easy, quick answers & results. The simplest possible solutions to feel and look healthy, to feel more confident and feel stronger! Yes, you must move your body, workout and sweat BUT do you know you have to be accountable for EVERYTHING EVERYTHING that you eat & drink. I know you hear and read it all the time…..but it IS true.
- Tough LOVE
Are you addicted to sugar? Be honest. It’s crazy how it can make you want more and more and you don’t even realize it because it becomes a daily craving. I hear from clients a lot..I just want something sweet after my meals. Ok, I have felt that way too, BUT I promise it is a habit that you created.
Ever notice when you don’t consume the crap and you go on vacation and start with the attitude..Ok I’ll have dessert today but that’s it. HA! Then its the next and next….yes mindset, but your body is now craving it everyday. This becomes sugar addiction. Once you stop and only consume the natural amount you need, the cravings will go away. I promise! AND…you all of a sudden feel full of energy and amazing again.
This doesn’t mean you start eating and drinking foods that are “Sugar-Free” either. Those are worse for you than the real deal. Another topic I will get into later.
How Much Sugar?
So how much is too much and how much “good” sugar do we need to function? Unfortunately most consume WAY too much on a daily basis, which not only causes your body fat to go up, but other unhealthy issues start to play in as well. Skin issues, gut issues, fatigue and many deadly health concerns can come into play. Kinda scary!
By all means..enjoy a dessert or 2 during the week or a few glasses of wine but just be more aware before it’s too late.
Love this chart below:
Food and Sugar Facts:
- Bananas have about 18 G of sugar
- Apples: 24g of sugar
- I cup of grapes: 24g of sugar
- 1 tablespoon of honey: 16 g
- yoplait or dannon yogurt: 20-28 g
Ok…YES, these foods are good for you and yes they offer many health benefits, but if you have a serving of each a day plus, the sugar in your coffee, plus the marinade you roasted you chicken in and the yogurt you had and maybe the “healthy protein bar” you ate in ONE day adds up to be an INSANE amount of sugar that your body cannot burn off and it goes right to your belly or buns. Worse than that..is starts to make you feel tired and moody. Then bigger health issues can start to occur. Oh…did you add the glass of wine or 2 or the possible desert you had????? You see my point. It adds up quick.
Read Nutrition Labels
Do you read your food labels? It’s SO automatic since i have been doing it for years, but its mind-blowing on how much sugar really is in foods and drinks then you would ever imagine.
A few Common Examples:
- Vanilla almond milk 12 G of sugar per serving Compared to Unsweetened vanilla almond milk ZERO and it tastes great!
- Mango or peach salsa: 4-5 G per tablespoon. YES, love it and use it, but its easy to consume ½ cup without knowing it!
- Sweet chilli sauce: Making an asian dish? Most have 7-14 g sugar per tablespoon.
- Ketchup: 1 tablespoon has 5 grams. You know you use more than a tablespoon when it comes to dipping those fries plus the burger. There are many organic brands that are super tasty and have only 2 g. The ketchup actually tastes more like tomatoes! Give it a try.
- Flavored yogurt: 20-28 g a serving Try: greek yogurt plain and add fruit or some brands like: Siggis greek yogurt that are flavored are only 8-10g sugar
My point…Pick and choose how you want to consume your sugar and try to keep it between 20-28 g a day.
Ideas for your sweet tooth
As long as you can control your portion, there are many healthier, fit diva approved choices that you can have throughout your week. You just need to get creative!
- Try to avoid any food or drink that say sugar-free. These are artificially flavored with “fake” sugars that your body cannot digest fully and they will actually trick your brain to want to consume more than you wanted in the first place.
- Try using Stevia when you want something sweetened. Like your coffee or tea. This is a natural plant that is either dried out and either found in powder form like sugar or liquid in a glass bottle with a dropper. Different brands do have slightly different tastes. I have found Whole foods brand to have one the best tastes as well as sweet drops. They even come in flavors such as: French vanilla (my fav), chocolate, hazelnut and a few more. Just be careful on how much you use. It has a much sweeter taste than regular sugar
- If you are going to limit the amount of sugar and actually count the grams you use per day….go for the real stuff! Use honey, raw cane sugar or coconut sugar.
~ Mix non fat or low-fat plain greek yogurt with a half scoop of your fav protein powder or real cocoa and a little stevia. Mix well, add a tsp of almond butter on top! De-lish
~ 1-2 oz of dark chocolate and put a little almond or peanut butter on top.
~ I like this product called better than peanut butter spread! 2 g of sugar and 2 g fat. Nothing artificial. I will use it on thin rice cakes and place 3-4 slices of frozen banana on top
~Halo Ice cream: Ok….Im a little hesitant with this one! Haha. First of all if you can consume it over 2-3 servings and only have it 1-2 x a week, go for it. If not, I don’t allow my clients to use this option…becomes additive.
~ KIND bars: the ones labeled with 5 g sugar only Caramel sea salt is one of my favs
~ Bear Naked Granola: Vanilla FIT is the flavor. Only 5 g sugar per serving.
This blog was meant to raise some awareness on how much you and especially your kids are consuming on a daily basis. There is so much info out here for suggestions, ideas, ways to switch this food for that. Eat This not That is a great website! I only listed a few that I come across with my clients or myself. Start reading your food labels more often. Not just for the fat or carbs that are in your food or drink…add up that sugar and see what happens to your body, mind and energy levels.
As always Fit Divas, if you have any further questions or need more ideas, let me know!
Happy Fall Season! Next Blog: French Fries that you can consume without Guilt!
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very good read! thank you!