COMING CLEAN: Diet Cleanup: Cutting Back on Sugar

Do you like pie at Thanksgiving? Me, too! And I’ve got half an apple pie in my refrigerator if you want to stop by and pick it up. Seriously, come take it away. I can eat turkey for days, but I’m all sugared out. Or, at least I thought so. The sugar in sweets seems… Read more »

Do you like pie at Thanksgiving? Me, too! And I’ve got half an apple pie in my refrigerator if you want to stop by and pick it up.

Seriously, come take it away. I can eat turkey for days, but I’m all sugared out.

Or, at least I thought so. The sugar in sweets seems obvious, but then I started to examine the other sources of sugar in my diet — even those that were naturally occurring were surprisingly high.

  • My daily banana: about 14 grams
  • The “splash” of coconut creamer in my morning coffee: 4 grams in 1 tablespoon (I’m partial to So Delicious’s French Vanilla flavor; original has 1 gram; both contain carrageenan, which can cause digestive upset in some people)
  • Store-made sesame dressing @ the salad bar: maybe 6 to 10 grams per 2 tablespoons, but this can vary greatly. Back to olive oil and lemon juice!
  • California roll from Hissho Sushi for $5 sushi Wednesdays at Lunds: They don’t list sugars in their nutrition chart, but consider the 56 grams of carbohydrates, many of which come from the white rice and convert to sugar in the body. And since I get maki, I’m eating a lot of rice. Brown rice sushi is a better option, or better yet, sashimi. OR! A filet of broiled salmon with some tamari.

Then there’s the not-so-surprising sources, like the sugars found in flours, or the honey that I add to my tea.

So how on earth will I cut back during the heaviest treat season of the year? I’m not jazzed about cutting sugar cold turkey, but some experts suggest it’s the best plan of action. I’ve had a lot of success with detoxes in the past, so I’m switching to a detox-esque plan every day, with a few allowances for celebratory beverages and treats.

One of the best tips I’ve read: Fill up on more healthy foods and they’ll push out the not-so-healthy foods.

And where I start is delicious: adding in more healthy fats.

Because, as science has recently proven (and we’ve discussed in the magazine for years, especially when it comes to fears over cholesterol), eating fat doesn’t necessarily make you fat. Go ahead and enjoy your olive and coconut oils! (And read more on oils in our article here.)

It’s Step 1. More healthy fats.

And, you know, it’s only day 1, but I’m feeling a bit calmer, and my sugar craving hasn’t beckoned today.

I’ll keep you posted on my progress, and share Step 2 in a few days.

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