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Think you’re eating healthily? Read this and think again

13th November 2017

TWO weeks ago we started the Drop A Size For Christmas challenge. So – how are you doing so far? Have you been practising your small habits every day? If you have been diligent about your baby steps then go to the top of the class. If life has got in the way and you haven’t quite managed it every day, then look at it as a learning experience rather than giving up.

Think about how you can learn from what’s not gone so well and rather than getting emotional about it and thinking you’re a failure – do it differently.

One of the things you can do over the next few weeks to really move yourself forward both in terms of health and your weight loss is to be aware of your sugar consumption – and I mean the added sugar and hidden sugar that’s in our everyday food.

I know I keep on about this but it’s really really important.  Last Friday at the Sugar Summit in London, it was revealed that people’s concern about the dangers of sugar is very high.

Here’s one of the slides with the statistics, photographed off the screen at the summit.

A lot of the reason we consume so much sugar is that hidden in everything!

Look at the different names sugar goes under in everyday food…

So my challenge to you for the next week is to be vigilant and if you think you eat healthy food, think again.  Look for the sugar content in what you’re buying then limit your consumption to the recommended healthy amount…

Which is 25g a day (6tsp) for a woman and 38g (9tsp) a day for a man. If you’re anything like me, you were conditioned to look for the fat content in food.

Years ago I used to swear by Rosemary Conley’s Hip and Thigh diet and followed it religiously – limiting my fat consumption to only a few grams a day.

But things have moved on and several years ago I discovered a lot of the fat I was excluding from my daily nutrition was in fact important to have IN my body for essential health reasons.

However, refined, added sugar is NOT needed by our bodies at all and we consume too much of it.  So even if you think you’re eating healthy food, please spend a week checking your labels.

I spoke to a lady recently who said she eats healthy food all the time and couldn’t understand why she wasn’t shifting fat. Yet on closer investigation I discovered most of her food is convenience food from a very well-known “healthy” brand and there was huge amounts of sugar in the savoury food.

This is because sugar acts as a preservative to make shelf life longer and helps the freezing process to be more effective, too.  So today I’m issuing you with a challenge within a challenge!

My new challenge for you is about making sure the food you’re eating is healthy and not riddled with sugar – because so much of it is.

If you’re listening to a Slimpod this should be easy peasy to do!

Let me know in the comments below if you’re up for that and I’ll check in with you next week to see how it’s going!

What do you think? Please leave a comment

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29 Comments

Irene McGee

Sugar has never been an issue for me – except in wine. My issue is definitely portion control – but issuing smaller plates has helped and I’m seeing retails

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Ann Stirrup

I totally agree with you Sandra & will be extra vigilant. I didn’t know some of those alternative names for sugar & it’s truly amazing that it is put into so many foods that one wouldn’t expect!!

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MAIRE Moore

I’m game! Thanks for the added motivation.

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Eva myers

Totally agree; very aware of the sugar in lots of foods and so I try to cook from scratch so that I know what’s in it. Occasionally I fancy something like mousse or toffee yogurt and I choose to eat it ‘mindfully’ ……. all things in moderation. I don’t think I’ve lost much weight but neither have I gained any and that, for me, is a bonus. What has gone on over the years is not going to come off in weeks. Just knowing that I’m not on a “diet” is wonderful.

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Wendy

Thanks Sandra. This is a real eye opener. I have been looking at labels when I shop but this list is mind boggling!

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Catherine

I am going shopping this afternoon and I will certainly be checking the labels for sugar. I have occasionally looked at labels and was surprised at some of the savoury items which contained sugar. In future I will be more vigilant.

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Andrea

Will do. I think I eat little sugar but will be good to check this out.

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carol hayden

Hi Sandra , I’m actually finally seeing results and I don’t mean on the scale but definitely in my clothes horaaaay trousers that were tight actually fit beautifully and a dress that is favourite of mine, that lbd , I wore for the first time in two years and got so many compliments so it’s a big yes from me 😜 I cannot and will not revert back I just feel much healthier got lots more energy even with a nasty cough 🙄 but it’s not stopping me still doing the step challenge which helps keep you motivated thank you Sandra thank you slimpod xx

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Joe Pick

Hi, As I’ve mentioned before I’m a firm believer in all that you say about sugar and have been off it for awhile. The problem sometimes is the contents section on what you buy is in such small print I sometimes ask people in the supermarket what is the grahm or percentage level of sugar…. I’m not sure sometimes I think that i’ve lost weight and other times I just think I’ve reached a plateau, an encouraging thing that you wrote reminded me that we all lose weight in different ways and sometimes it’s just slower, so I’ve decided to soldier on and just carry on for the time being. Regards, Joe

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Christine Callaghan

I have found added sugar in nearly all the food I was eating before, and it is addictive. I am finding it hard to give up. But it does get easier if you keep trying.

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Wendy

Although I make most meals from scratch, my sugar consumption is far too high. My weak time is when watching tv in the evening. Thank you for reminding me..

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Becky

I’m going shopping this evening so will be sure and check for those hidden sugars, thank you

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Lisa

I’m already doing this challenge, I’m one week in tomorrow.

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Stella Plant

You must have sent this while I was out shopping but thankfully I didn’t buy any convenience food only fresh. Now I’m retired I have more time to cook and I do enjoy it.

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Shannon Scutari

Thanks for this article Sandra. Yes, sugar is lurking everywhere.

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Liz Lambert

I do worry about the lactose in milk, I only use skimmed milk but when I taste the milk on my bowl of uncooked porridge oats it tastes soooo sweet. One of my baby steps was to give up mayonnaise because of the sugar content, and I have managed to stick to that. I also worry about the tomato sauce that comes with pilchards and sardines, so I may switch to mackerel instead.

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Carol Bray

Thank you for another inspiring article – to think we have no nutritional benefit from sugar, yet it’s commonly used in various foods!! Makes me angry 😠 Will be vigilant, thanks again

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Eve

I eat mainly fresh vegetables, meat, Fruit and frozen fish and meat. I think my biggest problems are portion sizes. I could do with advice on how to reduce them.

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Maria Woodford

I do my best to avoid sugar wherever poss but do slip from time to time
What about fruit is the sugar in this to be avoided too

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Carol Clark

I have been looking at the level of sugar in food for a while now alongside listening to my Slimpod. I have been loosing Weight slowly but am happy with this. Usually at this time of the year I am craving sugar all the time as I have Seasonal Affective Disorder. This year I haven’t been doing this. I continue to work on what you have been suggesting.

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Anna

I had started thinking about this after reading how Davina Mcall gave up sugar. What scared me was how much I was unknowingly giving my children, even in seemingly healthy cereals aimed at children such as multigrain hoops, a bowl had up to 8g!!!! Really made me think so am trying them on porridge tomorrow!

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Iris Cunningham

I’m in I’ll be on the lookout for all the different names for sugar now

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Di

Really going to go down the road to being sugar free.

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Barbara Hayes

I have checked the sugar content for quite a long time now as I always tried to give up sugar for Lent and only succeeded a handful of times over the years but when I did I always felt better. I think the problem was I did not know how much sugar the body actually needed and the number of different names which, now I know I think will help me. Also, I am a sweet addict and turn to it for comfort which I have done a lot over the last 6 months but since I joined slimpod I do not eat the sweet aisle in the supermarket as I did and have lost weight as I have gone down a dress size. Whey hey ….. now I know how much and more names I am hoping I can curb the comfort eating. Onwards and upwards.

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Vicky Boswell

Great Sandra will be more aware now and look for hidden sugars . Thank you

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Pam Audsley

I’m eating less sugar and less fat, and cutting down seriously on chocolate , biscuits and crisps.

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Gemma

It really annoys me that these,are hidden in many foods! It should be clear on all products so you can make the right choices! I’m definitely going to be checking my regular foods to see how much hidden sugar I’m actually consuming, I dread to think. 😒

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Kay Forrest

I do check for added sugars ..type 2 but well controlled…. sometimes however it it very difficult as life takes over ,in a rush etc

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Sarah leedham

Yes I will definitely be extra vigilant when shopping thanks for the reminder

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