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The Western pallet (especially Americans) craves sweet and salty foods from early childhood; hence the sugar addiction. This is a vast contrast to the Eastern pallet, which craves sour, bitter, and pungent foods. Food manufacturers use this fact as to their benefit by adding sugar into nearly every food product available on the market. For example, one may not think of ketchup, pickles, deli meat, or potato chips being sugar sources, but manufacturers add these ingredients to sweeten their products to make them taste better and more addictive.
Rather than raw sugar, most companies use less expense sugar sources like high fructose corn syrup or dextrose. People don’t realize that sugar is added to practically everything they buy at the grocery store. But you don’t have to miss out on the foods you love. When at your local Carmel Valley store, search for products that don’t have added sugar in the ingredients. Ideally, chose the organic option, which tends not to have added sugar. But still be careful to read the ingredients to see if it is sweetened with organic sugar.
The sugar added to the foods you eat all day long slowly raises your blood sugar and then it goes back down. When you eat something too high in sugar, your blood sugar will spike and then crash back down leaving you lethargic.
Takes a couple weeks to restrict to get through the withdrawal from a sugar addiction. Yet while most people will try to eliminate it from their grocery list, most are likely not going to eliminate sugar completely. The best way to eliminate excess sugar from your diet and still address those powerful sugar cravings to us try natural sugar substitutes.
Natural sugar substitutes:
Xylitol – A naturally and beneficial sweetener found in many fruits and vegetables. It has a very low glycemic index of 7– which means it does not disrupt blood sugar levels nor does it cause the storage of fat.
Luo Han Guo Fruit Extract –Luo Han Guo is an excellent antioxidant and immune system builder. It is high in Vitamin C content, and many minerals such as calcium and potassium. Lo Han Guo is low-glycemic and calorie free.
Stevia- As a sweetener, stevia’s sweet taste has a slower onset and longer duration than that of sugar with 300 times the sweetness of sugar, although some of its extracts may have a bitter aftertaste.
Other healthy natural sweeteners that are calorie-free are Truvia and Erythritol. Ones with natural sugar are agave and raw honey.
Remember, Sucralose (also marketed as Splenda®) is not a natural sugar substitute. Avoid artificial sugar substitutes like sucralose, aspartame, acesulfame potassium and all other artificial sweeteners that our bodies were not meant to ingest. Artificial sweeteners’ negative health effects can be worse than the sugars they are replacing.
Kyle Brown is a health and nutrition expert whose portfolio includes everything from leading workshops for Fortune 500 companies and publishing nutrition articles in top-ranked fitness journals, to training celebrity clientele –from pro athletes to CEOs to multi-platinum recording artists. In 2010 and 2011, Kyle was voted San Diego’s Best Personal Trainer by the readers of The San Diego Union Tribune and Signonsandiego.com. Kyle is the CEO and the creator of FIT 365®, an all-natural, complete low-calorie meal in a shake. Kyle is also the author of the forthcoming book Secrets of a Champion.