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Sugar is a popular topic in nutrition discussion. Sugar goes unnoticed in the diet more than any other fat-building substance that causes hormonal and neurological chemistry imbalances, overall health detriment, and unwanted weight gain. Becoming more aware of where unnecessary sugar is contained and how to avoid it all together to be healthier and more vital.

Sugar alcohols: not sugar, not alcohol. They are carbohydrates with structures that only resemble sugar and alcohol, and are considered nutritive sweeteners because they provide fewer calories when consumed. The list includes  isomalt, lactitol, maltitol, HSH, erythritol, sorbitol, mannitol and xylitol.

Avoid all artificial sweeteners. Artificial sweeteners belong to the non-nutritive additives in food, and are chemically over-processed. In the United States, sweeteners fall under the “Generally Recognized as Safe” (GRAS) list or as food additives under the 1958 Food Additives Amendment to the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.

Drink more water. Increasing water consumption will help the body stay hydrated and there is no sugar calories involved. Limiting the juice consumption to one 6oz.-8oz. glass a day is a great option.
Make your own food at home. Eating out does not allow you as much control about what ingredients are used. Also, choose your restaurants wisely where the quality of the food and ingredients healthy.
Prepare your own salad dressings and sauces. An simple dressing can be prepared with olive oil, vinegar, lemon, salt, and pepper. If eating out, ask for the dressing on the side or for just olive oil and vinegar.
Watch your portion sizes. If you eat out regularly for work or social reasons, book your meals at restaurants where you know the portion sizes are small or only eat half of your meal and save the rest for later.
Avoid from processed & packaged foods. Check the food labels for the  ingredients is important. Many seemingly-healthy foods, such as health bars, cereal mixes, and other packaged snacks may contain high fructorse corn syrup, corn sugar, corn syrup, corn sweetener, dextrose, lactose, maltose, invert sugar, malt syrup, molasses, cornstarch and other forms of glucose.
Choose your fruit wisely. Go for fruit with less sugar, which are typically smaller in size and more tart, such as blueberries, apples, pears, grapes, strawberries, peaches, kiwi, and other.
Choose chocolate as an occasional treat. Choose dark chocolate or bitter chocolate for cooking. Chocolate also contains antioxidants and helps increase seratonin to elevate the mood.

Have questions? Contact me here, at drtijana.dc@gmail.comFacebook, or Twitter!

Be healthy & happy, Dr. Tijana

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