Diet dilemma: Hidden sugars

·2-min read
AGE Fotostock

Even when you're mindful of what you're eating and drinking, sneaky sugars can still get into your diet.

Ditching cakes, sweets, chocolate and so on means cutting down on sugar, but the white stuff is in a lot of other foods too - ones you might not necessarily know about.

Read on to find out where the sugar in your diet may be coming from.

White flour

How can something so bland and powdery be bad for you? Eating foods containing this ingredient in small doses is fine, but be wary of how much you intake. The refining process of flour turns the grains into a form of sugar which will be absorbed abnormally quickly into your body. With this process comes an increased appetite - by not feeling as full you will find yourself craving more, even if you have a large portion.

Some of the most obvious foods are white bread and pasta, biscuits, and pretty much all refined white carbohydrates. Try swapping them for a wholemeal variety to keep you going for longer.

Tomato and brown sauce

Try to avoid smothering your dinner in these condiments as what makes them so tasty and sweet is all the added sugar. Tomatoes used in the sauce are often picked too early, meaning extra sugar is mixed to counter their acidity. Roughly a teaspoon of sugar is in a tablespoon of the red stuff, so be careful how much you use. The same goes for brown sauce, minus the tomatoes. There are reduced salt and sugar options out there which will work wonders on your waistline.

Breakfast cereals

There may be way more sugar than you realise in a humble bowl of cereal. Per 100g portion of classic Cornflakes contains around 5g - 7g of sugar and even the options considered to be healthy, such as Bran Flakes, hold around 11g per 100g. Read the ingredients very carefully before pouring a bowl in the morning.

Canned foods

Soup and vegetables are known to be healthy, but take notice of the sugar (and salt) added to preserve the contents of a can. By making your own soup and cooking your vegetables fresh you can control exactly what goes in them and mix it up a little rather than settling for the only options on the shelf.

Fruit and fruit juices

Not such a secret, but it bears repeating. After sipping on fresh juice, your teeth can often feel coated and fuzzy. Opt for a sugar-free cordial with water if you fancy a sweet beverage to cater to your thirst. As for fruits like bananas and pineapple, don't overdo your intake. Stick to your five a day and add in low-sugar fruits such as berries or apples.

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