We always justify it to ourselves saying that “Well, we don’t eat it regularly. So, we should be fine” or “It is just once in a while. A small sweet bar can’t harm me”. You are right.
Guest Post By Shaheen Majeed
That being said, a small sweet bar can’t harm you, but it is necessary to keep a track of how much sugar you consume. Critics would argue that a little sugar does not really create major health problems for you and so it should be fine, but all that sugar does is provide empty calories, without providing any real substantive nutritional value.
There are countless studies that link high sugar intake with lifestyle diseases such as Obesity, Type-2 Diabetes, metabolic syndrome and so on. Excess sugar is also known to raise the risk of heart diseases. It is important to take precaution from being prey to such diseases than seeking cure later.
It should not come as a surprise though since reports reveal that an alarming 69.1 million diabetics live in India, the second-highest number after China. The incidence of diabetes mellitus, is likely to have a 15% bump in India alone. And if not managed well, will lead to complications in the long run, with heart attacks, strokes, blindness, nerve damage, amputation of limbs among others.
Indian Ayurveda, our ancient medical science, as we are aware, developed thousands of years ago, claims it not only can control but also cure this deadly ailment. Ayurveda, with its dietary regime, time-tested herbal treatment and yogic breathing can definitely be a wonder. Implementing that to your daily routine can add to overall wellbeing.
Are You Addicted to Sugar?
Even if you knew that you are an addict, you will find it difficult to stop. Your brain will find it difficult to know when you are full of the sugar will interfere with the brain’s satiety signals. Hence, it will drive compulsive eating. Sugar will also hinder the burning of fat by hindering fat-burning enzymes and instead encourage excess storage as fat.
Here are a few tips and tricks that can help you deal with your sugar craving, while at the same time pamper your taste buds with the best food in town!
Avoid cola, Drink Water
The benefits of drinking water have been told zillion time! Bear with me again as I extol the virtues of H2O. Pick the water bottle instead of a fizzy cola drink. Better still, don’t buy colas or fructose-laden drinks. The temptation to drink the fizzy drinks is too much to control when they are there in the fridge. It becomes easier if it is not there. If you want fizz, have a plain soda. Or drink fruit juices or whole fruits, whose natural sugars are more beneficial to the body than table sugar.
Switch To Savoury
I know it will be a sacrilege to completely abolish sweets. You could look at creating savoury dishes/snacks with veggies in it during the week and keep the indulgent high-sugar puddings, sweets for the weekend. By doing so, you could cut the sugar consumption in the days leading up to the weekend and yet indulge your sweet tooth cravings on days without feeling guilty and make your weekend satisfactory.
Plan What You Eat
It is good to plan in advance, the craving comes when the sweets are lying around waiting to be eaten. So ensure you include healthy food when the sweet dishes are prepared in the right quantity. It will be difficult to keep your family or your guests from indulging in food, but you sure can control what they eat.
If you are planning a big dinner, then limit carbs at dinner time. The carbs that we eat gets broken down into sugar, so one must keep an eye on that too.
Don’t skip meals in anticipation of the big dinner or lunch. You will be doing a lot more harm than good as this will cause your blood sugar levels to drop. We all have a habit of eating sweets whenever we see them, irrespective of the time of the day. We must ensure that we don’t consume sweets on an empty stomach as this would cause the blood sugar levels to rise.
When you have sweets along with a meal, it would help control the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream and won’t leave you hanging either with a sugar high or a sugar crash. Eat slowly and drink water to help with proper digestion. Practice moderation.
Fatigue causes us to have cravings for fatty and sugary foods as the body is in dire need of energy. If you pamper yourself with sweet, then it will raise your blood sugar. If you don’t, then well you just feel tired.
Try and sleep for seven hours at least. It is important that you give your body a complete rest, especially times when we are on a free diet day.
Take A Walk
No one expects you to start shedding weight in anticipation of a number of sweets you will be having. But, walking is a fantastic activity to keep your calories under check and also a great way to beat the sweet intake. Walking regularly also helps to keep the metabolism in check and thus prevent us from the feeling of having eaten too much. You don’t want to roll off the dining table and into the bed. Take a short walk to help settle the food.
Hope these tips will help you keep up the spirit of Good health, while being responsible about the food ou eat!
Mr. Shaheen Majeed is the Marketing Director of Sami-Sabinsa group
Lead image via Dr. Phil Maffetone