4 tips to reduce consumption of added sugar and manage diabetes


New Delhi: Diabetes is tricky – if you ear sugary foods, your blood sugar is likely to be spiked to unhealthy levels, and if you cut sugar, carbs, and starch out of your diet completely, you are at risk of hypoglycemia. This is why, diabetes management requires you to be cautious and careful, at all times. Diet and exercise are very important factors in diabetes management, and a healthy diet and lifestyle, with a regular exercise routine, can reduce most complications and problems that arise due to diabetes.

One important component of diabetes management is to regulate your sugar intake. According to the WHO, the maximum amount of added sugar one should have in a day is 50g. However, the healthy limit would be 25 g of added sugar, only. Added sugar can cause harm even when you are healthy, but for diabetics, it is even more harmful. Natural sugar, on the other hand, found in fruits, vegetables, etc is not harmful, as these foods also contain vitamins, minerals and fibre. However, not all tips and tricks that people preach about diabetes management are practical, or possible to follow when someone has a specific routine or lifestyle that they follow. Here are 4 practical tips for you to cut down on sugar and make diabetes management easier.

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Processed foods contain sugar, even when some claim to be healthy and sugar-free. It is best to read their labels and understand how much of added sugar do they really contain, per serving. It is impossible to remember all ingredients in all processed foods that denote sugar, but words ending with -ose (like fructose, glucose, etc), sugar, and syrup are the most commonly used to denote sugar. Spot these words and understand how much sugar your processed foods contain, and avoid the ones that contain too many.

Include more whole foods in your diet

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Whole foods are foods in their natural form – fruits, vegetables, legumes, whole grains, nuts, seeds, etc. Whole foods contain only natural sugar and do not contain any added sugar. If you include as many whole foods as you can for different meals and snacks throughout the day, you are likely to consume less added sugar, reduce sugar cravings and induce the feeling of satiety. Fats from whole foods sources also help in keeping you fuller for longer and reducing sugar cravings.

Do not drink your calories

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A can of soda contains about 40g of added sugar, which leaves only 10g sugar for you to reach the maximum limit of 50g in a day. Many people forget to count the added sugar and calories consumed as beverages, and that is when their diabetes management goes wrong. Try to keep a strict tab on the added sugar in your drinks, and try to avoid sugary sodas, carbonated drinks and opt for natural drinks like lemon water, green tea, etc.

Include more protein in your diet

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Including protein helps induce the feeling of satiety and helps in keeping sugar cravings away. If you have a sugary breakfast, which is not protein-rich, you are likely to feel hungry soon. Not just hungry, your blood sugar will see a rise when you have your breakfast, and then dip. This can cause sugar cravings, which will make you eat more added sugar, and mess with your diabetes management.

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