Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Hidden Sugars

I am a former sugar addict. I still crave those delectable sweets, but I try to satisfy any crazy cravings with fruit. While I have come a long way (I allow myself one reasonably portioned "dessert" dessert per week), I find that some of the clean foods I've been eating have added sugars. For someone who is trying to combat a genetic history of heart disease, high cholesterol, and spare tires, any way that I can avoid added sugars is desirable. Not only do added sugars pack on the pounds, but the more you eat the more you crave it (not good when you're a former addict). So what is a girl to do? Well, I did a little research and compiled a list of foods to watch out for because they contain hidden sugars, even in their organic state. I also added list that will help you decipher the names and forms sugar can take...

Sneaky Foods
  • protein bars
  • flavored yogurt/ greek yogurt
  • certain breads (watch out for raisin breads and honey wheat breads)
  • low fat salad dressing (they take out the fat, but add sugar for taste)
  • ketchup
  • spaghetti sauce
  • peanut butter
Sugar Names  
Natural Sugar Sources
  • sucrose (table sugar)
  • cane sugar
  • maltose
  • fructose
  • dextrose
  • lactose
  • honey
  • agave nectar
  • Stevia extract (considered a sugar substitute, but research so far has shown that it is not chemically processed)
  • sucanat
  • sugar beet syrup
  • barley malt syrup
*please note that fructose and lactose are natural sugars from fruits and milk products, respectively

Artificial Sugars (chemically processed and to be avoided at all costs)
  • saccharin
  • aspartame
  • sucralose (not to be confused with sucrose)
  • neotame
  • acesulfame potassium
  • sorbitol
  • xylitol
  • corn syrup
  • high fructose corn syrup
  • isomalt
There are many more sources of sugar that are out there, but I chose the most common that I see on labels.Also please feel free to correct me as I am not an expert and could always use the guidance of an expert!


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