Nailing down a diet that fits your lifestyle can be tremendously tricky, especially when you’re a keen athlete.
You need so and so many calories to have enough energy, and you need so and so many proteins to make sure your body has the means to rebuild muscle and get stronger and leaner.
When you need absurd many calories or proteins, it’s normal to sway towards substitutes and quick solutions such as bars, powder drinks etc. Now this is where it gets tricky. It’s important to get the nutrients you need, but you need to keep an eye on the sugar levels of your quick fix!
Some drinks and bars are loaded with sugar. Short term, the sugars aren’t necessarily going to impact much on your health and well being. However, in long term there can be some serious damage to your health, especially to your teeth if you’re sporting a heavy sugar and acid diet.
1. Sports Drinks
It’s easy to be fooled by the six pack on the can. But there’s no magic bullet, or fountain of fitness that you can drink from unfortunately.
Sports drinks are marketed in a way that will fool even the brightest. They’re good for your your body, they’ll make you faster, leaner and stronger.
But, if you aren’t a professional athlete, the sugar contents of a Lucozade are ludacris! In a small 380ml bottle there’s a whooping 49 grams or sugar!
There are different recommendations as to how much sugar you should consume in a day, but most recommendations lie around 30g/day.
Perhaps the most surprising entry on the list, but an entry nonetheless.
We are of course not referring to the broth and broccoli low cal soup you made at home, but the canned soups that you can get in most supermarkets.
The average can of soup has between 10 and 15 grams of sugar. Not exactly what you’d expect from a can of soup, is it?
3. Flavoured Coffees
Deep down, we all know that a caramel latte is a devil in disguise. But how much sugar is actually in these ridiculously delicious drinks?
Costa serves a Chai Latte with a mind blowing 79.9g of sugar/ serving! That’s the equivalent of 20 teaspoons of sugar. Bit more that you expected?
Starbucks holds the UK sugar record, so next time you fancy a Hot Mulled Fruit Grape with Chai, Orange and Cinnamon, prepare yourself for an staggering 99g of sugar! That’s more that three times the recommended daily sugar intake!
Fruits are good, therefore fruit juice is good. This seems to be a common conclusion that people draw, and understandably so.
Fruits are packed with lots of good stuff like minerals fibres and vitamins. But they also come with a lot of sugar.
When you extract the juice and nutrients from the fruit, the sugar comes too unfortunately.
As it takes quite a lot of fruit to make a glass of juice, you can quickly consume a lot of sugar without thinking much about it.
5. Low Fat Foods
Surely low fat foods are healthier than regular foods, right? Well it’s a little more complicated than so. When you reduce the fat in foods, the taste tend to suffers.
To make up for the taste compromise, the manufacturers often add more sugar.
We had a look at the nutritional value of a common known yogurt:
|Natural Yogurt (150ml)||Low-Fat Yogurt (150ml)|
An increase in sugar from 9.75g to 12.75g maybe doesn’t seem like an awful lot, but that’s 30% more sugar in a yogurt that’s marketed as a healthy alternative!
It’s the same across low-fat yogurts, low-fat spreads and low-fat ready meals etc.
Author Bio: Angela Rowlands // Co-founder at Buttercup 7 Day Dental. Angela grew up in Glasgow and was a distinguished student at Glasgow University, graduating with honours in 2004 with the William Hunter Medal in Prosthodontics, the James Rankin Brownlie prize for Dental Surgery and the Lord Provost’s prize. Angela founded Buttercup in 2011 with Gerwyn Rowlands.