LOW SUGAR FOODS TO REDUCE SUGAR INTAKE: OUR DIETITIAN SERIES
Our in-house Dietitian, Emily, discusses why it may be beneficial for some to reduce their sugar intake and how we can introduce more low sugar foods into our diet. Discover more here.
In our latest video, our in-house Dietitian, Emily Stuart, explains the benefits to some of following a low sugar diet and the reasons why we may want to consider opting for more low sugar foods.
What is Sugar?
Sugar is naturally present in some foods such as fruit and milk, or it can be added to foods for various reasons. In this discussion, we are going to focus on this type of added sugar and explore why many of us should try to follow a low sugar diet.
Sugar can be added to some foods and drinks to improve the balance of flavour or add sweetness. It can also be used as a preservative or to add extra energy to certain foods. Foods that claim to be low in sugar are those which have 5g of total sugars or less per 100g.
As Emily explains, sugar is a type of dietary carbohydrate with starch and fibre being other types of carbohydrates. Excess sugar consumption in our diets can often lead to health issues such as dental problems, so let’s explore some of the benefits of a low sugar diet.
Why may a low sugar diet be good for me?
Public Health Nutrition Advice recommends that the daily sugar intake for an average adult should be no more than 30g of sugar a day, which is equivalent to 7 sugar cubes.
Too much added sugar in our diets can lead to poor dental health and unwanted weight gain. Trying to limit your added sugar intake can help you to maintain a healthy weight and protect your teeth against harmful decay.
What is a low sugar diet?
To follow a low sugar diet, try to avoid or limit your intake of foods that contain large amounts of added sugar.
Added sugar is present in many of the things we consume every day, such as:
- Sweetened drinks
- Sweet foods like cakes or biscuits
- Some breakfast cereals
Choosing low sugar foods can help you to reduce your overall daily sugar intake. Therefore, it’s a great idea to find simple ways to introduce low sugar options of the things you enjoy into your diet.
Try replacing your usual sweet snacks with a low sugar alternative, such as
- Carrot or apple sticks
- Low sugar or natural, unsweetened yoghurts
You could also swap regular sugary drinks for sugar free options, milk or water and add sweetness to cereal with fruit instead of honey.
Whilst many of us will benefit from cutting back our sugar intake a little, it is important to remember that sugar can also be a valuable source of energy. Some people may benefit from eating sugary foods more frequently, for example if they have unintentionally lost weight recently. Ensure you always seek professional advice on your own situation.
How do I know how much sugar is in my food?
Traffic light labelling on foods can help you to be aware of the sugar content. If foods are high in sugar, they will have a red ‘traffic light’ for sugar, and foods low in sugar will have a green ‘traffic light’. It is important to note that, although all our frozen ready meals have traffic light labelling, not all foods show this. Looking at the ingredients list can also help you to work out if sugar has been added. If it has and is close to the top of the ingredients list, chances are the quantity is high.
Here at Wiltshire Farm Foods we work closely with our Dietitian, Emily, to ensure we develop and produce meals which not only taste delicious, but also form part of a nutritious, balanced diet.
For example, our Reduced Sugar Desserts offer a variety of sweet treats that contain at least 30% less sugar than our standard desserts, perfect if you have a sweet tooth but want to reduce your sugar intake. Similarly, our Nutritious and Delicious menu provides a range of flavoursome ready meals that are low in sugar as well as fat, saturated fat, and salt.
If you’re interested in hearing more from Emily about healthy fats to include in your diet, be sure to take a look at the previous video in our dietitian series. If you have any nutrition related questions you'd love to ask Emily, then please use our new Dietitian Form on our website.
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