To lose weight you have to consume fewer calories than you take in. One source of excess calories is sugar. So, reducing your intake of sugary foods is clearly one way to cut calories.
Here are few ideas for reducing the sugar in your diet:
- Reduce your intake of foods with added sugar. That means cookies, cake, candy, sodas, juice drinks, pies and sugary desserts. Breakfast cereals and other ready-to-eat foods often contain a large amount of added sugar, so read food labels carefully.
- Add less sugar to food and drink that you prepare at home. Preparing foods at home give you the advantage of controlling just how much sugar you use.
- Eat smaller portions of foods that are high in sugar.
- Retrain your appetite. Make a special effort to eat less sugar for 21 to 28 days. It usually takes about 28 days to get used to eating foods without sugar or with significantly less sugar. Give yourself time.
- Choose naturally sweet foods, especially fresh fruits, to satisfy your sweet tooth. These foods will not only eliminate the sugar calories, they will add important vitamins, minerals, fiber and other health-promoting phytonutrients to keep you healthy as you lose weight.
- Keep a bottle of water handy and drink at regular intervals to keep your cravings at bay.
- Do not substitute artificial sweeteners for sugar. These sweeteners could potentially hurt your efforts rather than help you to lose weight.
Monitor your sugar intake regularly to determine how well you are doing. Be prepared to make additional adjustments as needed.
If you need help planning your diet to lose weight, consult a registered dietitian. You can find a registered dietitian by visiting the American Dietetic Association website at www.eatright.org or doing a generic search online.
Read Dr. Carter's Daily Diet Guide for today.