Reduce (Refined) Sugar Intake
SixFix aim for sugar intake: reduce total sugars, added sugar and use unrefined sugar when you do add it to recipes.
Just limit your intake of biscuits & cakes, right? Well, that’s a good start. If you still want the occasional biscuit, look for reduced fat & sugar versions. Or make your own.
Food labels often tell you how much sugar a food contains. So again, if you learn ‘label language’ you can compare labels and choose foods that are lower in sugar.
Look for the ‘carbohydrates (of which sugars)’ figure in the nutrition label.
- ‘High: over 15g of total sugars per 100g
- ‘Low: 5g of total sugars or less per 100g
If the amount of sugars per 100g is between these figures, then that is a medium level of sugars.
The sugars figure in the nutrition label is the total amount of sugars in the food. It includes sugars from fruit and milk, as well as the sugars that have been added.
A food containing lots of fruit or milk will be a healthier choice than one that contains lots of added sugars, even if the two products contain the same total amount of sugars. You can tell if the food contains lots of added sugars by checking the ingredients list (see below).
Sometimes you will see a figure for ‘carbohydrates’, and not for ‘carbohydrates (of which sugars)’.
The ‘carbohydrates’ figure will also include starchy carbohydrates, so you can’t use it to work out the sugar content. In this case, check the ingredients list to see if the food is high in added sugars.
Here are some other tips on how to reduce your sugar intake:
- Cut out sugar in tea – reduce it little by little over about 3 months and soon you’ll be down to none. After that if you get given the wrong cup of tea, you’ll soon know!
- Reduce sugar in coffee – I know drinking it without anything doesn’t suit everyone.
- Reduce and then cut out adding sugar to your breakfast cereal (like with tea, cut out over a few months and soon you’ll not miss it).
- When baking, add dried fruit to your cakes, bakes & biscuits to add sweetness or try Tate & Lyle ‘Fruit Sugar’ – it’s much sweeter than cane sugar so you use less (about a third less).
- Try using dark or light muscovado sugar – because of its toffee flavour I find you need less (plus get more flavour into the bargain)
- Sugar free squash as mentioned previously.
- Reduced sugar products such as ketchup, brown sauce and baked beans as mentioned previously.
- Learn ‘label language’ to compare the sugar content of breakfast cereals – even bran flakes contain added sugar