Eating well and knowing what components of nutrition to focus on or to avoid can sometimes be confusing. One of those components is sugar and like anything, too much of anything is not good. Of the hundreds of clients I’ve trained 9 times out of 10 most unintentionally consume far too much sugar despite trying to ‘eat pretty healthy’. The problem with over consuming sugar is two-fold: too much can affect your hormones and therefore how efficiently your body will function, and secondly, if you want to lose fat and look great then sugar is your foe. Too much will cover your muscles and hide the shape you want to show off.
Firstly, sugar comes in many forms and if people knew what to look for before choosing what to eat or drink then maybe diabetes, sugar addiction, and the general over weight condition wouldn’t be such an epidemic.
Here’s a list of some of the ‘other’ names sugar can be disguised as:
corn syrup high fructose corn syrup glucose sucrose fructose brown sugar cane sugar dextrose invert sugar raw sugar lactose maltodextrin turbinado sugar barley malt golden syrup honey maltose confectioner’s sugar beet sugar
What you want is to look for is foods that are low in sugar, ideally less than 5 gr per serving. So, for the odd time you get crackers or ‘boxed’ items see if its the best choice of the selection. Of course, nothing beats natural, unprocessed foods. Some of the better choices that have some sweetness but not excess would be: yams, sweet potato, tomatoes, peppers, strawberries, raspberries, grapefruit, squash just to name a few. This way you can satisfy your sweet tooth yet still achieve your fitness goals! My cook book actually has numerous sweet tasting desserts and snacks that mimic the taste of a typical dessert favourite (think brownies, cheesecake, apple crumble, etc) but are low in carbohydrates (let alone sugar), high in protein, and low in fat. Why would you not want to eat clean when you have so many food choices that will keep you satisfied all the while helping you achieve your ultimate physique? Stay tuned for part 2/3 where I discuss insulin and why (and how) too much sugar can negatively impact your gym efforts.
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