As a leader in the fight for more awareness around sugar, I feel compelled to help you break through some of that noise and learn the truth about sugar!
These are some of the most common myths that I hear around sugar that need to be brought to your attention.
“It’s OK because it’s natural”
So it arsenic and mold! When we know something is toxic to our body, it doesn’t make it healthy for us even if it does come from the earth. The fact of the matter is that most types of sugar or sweeteners that we buy today are anything but natural. Until I see you chewing on fresh sugar cane I won’t believe it. (p.s. I’ve actually chewed on real sugar cane before and it’s not even that sweet)
“Honey, maple syrup, agave, and coconut sugar are healthy substitutes”
Sugar comes in many forms. In fact, there are currently over 70 names for sugar. The really important thing to remember here is that all of these added sweeteners are still just S.U.G.A.R! I know so many people who consider using honey a free pass because it’s natural and organic. This is mostly because of very strategic marketing in the industry that guides you into believing that you are doing something better for your health. When ANY of these sweeteners enter your body, they react in the exact same way as white sugar.
I know what you’re thinking now. “But honey has health benefits, molasses has iron it in, coconut sugar is metabolized slower, agave doesn’t spike my insulin levels….”
Trust me, sugar is not where you want to be looking for your daily vitamins and minerals. That’s what real food and vegetables are for. There is virtually no difference in absorption between white cane sugar and coconut or brown sugar. It’s still all sugar. And that agave that you’ve been drizzling in your coffee also happens to be 90% fructose (which is why it doesn’t spike your insulin levels) which heads straight to your liver and gets stored as fat.
It’s all sugar. Use in moderation.
“But it’s organic”
This does not equal healthy. You can buy organic cheesies, cookies, and even pop! When the food itself is inherently bad for your health it doesn’t matter if it was produced without chemicals. If you’re going to eat sugar then yes, organic is best. But still, know that it’s sugar and that it should be used in moderation. I like to think of sugar as any other recreational drug (drinking, smoking, coffee etc..) and it should be used in moderation if you want to be in optimal health.
“I don’t have a sweet tooth”
I can’t tell you how many times people have said this to me. I get it, most of us know that sweet treats are loaded with sugar. What may surprise you is that even if you don’t usually grab for the box of cookies you are still consuming sugar and you may still very well be addicted to it. Sugar hides in over 75% of the food in your local grocery store. Salad dressing, pasta sauce, soup & soup stock, pizza sauce, yogurt, almond milk, bread, granola, granola bars, bottled beverages etc.. So next time you think that your lack of a sweet tooth has you safe, think again and take a look at those food labels.
“Dates and bananas are a healthy alternative”
This depends on your definition of healthy. If you struggle with sugar cravings and addiction, both of these foods can be deadly to your health. Yes, the fiber and vitamins in dates and bananas make them a decent option… sometimes. If you are still struggling with sugar addiction and consuming a lot of it in other areas of your life, then you should use these sparingly. 1 date is equivalent to 1 tsp of sugar. Fiber or no fiber, that’s a lot of sugar. So, as with any high sugar fruit and food, please use in moderation!
“Sugar-free options are healthier”
Any time a food makes a health claim, it’s probably not real food. Period. First off, the food has to have a package in order to make a claim… which means it’s a processed food. Strike one. Second, in order to produce flavor and keep you coming back to buy more, food companies often add addictive artificial sweeteners, unhealthy fats, and salt. So, next time you’re shopping and grab for the “sugar-free” ice cream, take a look at the list of ingredients and see what kind of chemicals and non-food items they’ve replaced the sugar with. The answer here is to go with the real food with sugar and have it in moderation. Stay clear of any packages that find the need to make claims.
Now you’re thinking “what am I supposed to do!”.
I’ve just told you that there is no free for all healthy substitute for sugar. What???!!!
The true solution is to get to a place where you are satisfied, happy, and excited to include real sugars into your life on occasion (instead of every single meal of every single day).
It is possible to eat delicious food without sugar and include an occasional treat in your life.
It is possible to be satisfied with just one cookie.
It is possible to say no thank you to a piece of cake and really mean it.
It’s all about reshaping your relationship with sugar and getting back in control of what drives those cravings.
I know this is possible because I’ve done it myself and it’s what I help all of my clients do too.
You deserve to get to that place. Your family deserves for you to get to that place. I know you want to be there. So, now’s your chance to do something about it. I’m challenging you to take one small step this week towards limiting the sugar in your life.
What will you do?? Post in the comments below!!
Love & Truth,