I followed the AHA’s recommendation for added sugar: Day 7
Garden avocado bagel sandwich on honey whole wheat from Einstein Bros – 7g added sugar
Coffee – 0g
Smoothie King smoothie with my usual substitutions – 0g
Sofritas bowl with brown rice, black beans, extra fajita veggies, salsa, guacamole, and lettuce from Chipotle – 0g
This is a little controversial as the website does not list added sugar, only total sugar which is 17g. However, this is simply the natural sugar that is found in the ingredients. Upon more digging it seems that Chipotle doesn’t add any sugar to anything other than their salad dressing, in the form of honey. As a side note, the meal that I usually get calculates to over 800 calories. While this exercise isn’t about total calories it is something worth noting. That being said, a burrito bowl from Chipotle will always last me at least 2 meals, sometimes 3. So not only is it healthy, but it’s also cost effective.
Hu Dark chocolate covered almonds – 3g
This is a great option for a little something sweet without breaking the bank
Some reflections after a week of reducing my sugar intake. First, reducing sugar requires awareness and conscious choice as added sugar is everywhere. According to www.sugars.com, over 60% of items in a regular grocery store contain added sugar. I believe this is for many reasons. It is true that sugar acts as a preservative and stabilizer. In addition, sugar does add flavor as well as texture to many products. However, I’d imagine the real reason sugar is added to many products in larger amounts than necessary comes down to business and product sales. “Give the people what they want”! And what we want is sugar! Studies have shown that even a moderate amount of sugar each day changes our brain chemistry similarly to addictive drugs. This effect will encourage us to replace activities like learning, social interaction, and even sex with sugar!
I encourage you to start looking at labels and asking questions. How much added sugar are you eating in a day? Could you keep it below the AHA’s recommendation of less than 25g/day for women and 30g/day for men?
Beth Jauquet, RD