(NC) Summer is when we can truly enjoy fruits and vegetables at their tastiest. Healthy eating should be a breeze, right? But summer can also be a time for socializing—backyard barbecues, late-afternoon cocktails and snacks are all tempting treats that can make your daily sugar intake skyrocket.
Fortunately, cutting down on sugar is not as hard as you may think. Get started with these quick tips:
Opt for sugar-free drink alternatives. Water is best, but if you crave something sweet, a refreshing alternative like sugar-free lemonade is a great option. You can turn your recipes into a fun activity the kids can also enjoy by setting up a lemonade stand and then donate the proceeds to help send kids living with type 1 diabetes to Diabetes Canada’s medically supervised camp called D-Camps.
Limit highly processed foods. Processed and prepared foods are often high in sugar, sodium and saturated fat. Eat them less often or have different, healthier options.
Compare labels. When looking at nutrition facts, tables and ingredients, choose foods that have little-to-no added sugars. Added sugar can come in many names. For example, look for brown sugar, cane sugar, concentrated fruit juice, corn syrup, dextrose, glucose-fructose corn syrup, maltose and more. Here’s a hint: ingredients ending in “ose” are likely sugar.
Consider your eating habits. Be mindful of what and why you are eating. Are you choosing the sugar-rich food and drink options because you are bored? Or it’s convenient? If so, try to avoid having highly processed, sugar-rich foods in the house. You are less likely to grab it if it’s not convenient. Have other snacks handy and ready to grab, like fruit, nuts, seeds and yogurt.
Cut back your serving size. When opting for sugary foods, have them in smaller amounts.
Add fruit. Instead of adding sugar, try adding fresh or dried fruits to your recipes.
Learn more about sending kids with type 1 diabetes to camp at putasqueeze.ca.