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Sugar and artificial sweeteners in the diet (Part 2)

Posted by Aisling Murray on

This is a continuation of last week’s article in the Examiner in which I discussed a little about the danger of too much sugar in the diet. For example I explained you do not have to be overweight to be affected negatively by overconsumption of sugar. Individuals of normal weight are still susceptible to conditions such as high blood pressure, liver problems, type 2 diabetes, etc. I also explained how much sugar in some common foods and how so called “healthy” foods can actually be high in sugar. This week I explain food choices that can help cut your sugar intake.

How to cut down on sugar?

If you are trying to reduce your sugar intake then cut back on the following:

  • Fizzy drinks, energy drinks and juices.
  • Sweets, biscuits, chocolate, confectionary products 
  • Be aware of that low fat products are not always low in sugar so ensure to check labels for sugar content.
  • Ice cream 
  • Energy bars 
  • Sauces, like tomato sauce and brown sauces. 


Lower sugar alternatives

If you have a sweet tooth, try getting sugar from more healthy alternatives:

  • Freshly squeezed juice; try it half and half water to juice to reduce sugar level even more 
  • Fresh fruit. Fruit contains natural sugar in the form of fructose and it might be just what you need to satisfy your sugar craving.
  • Low sugar/sugar free health bar like Nakd® bars, or try 3-4 squares of high cocoa chocolate.  
  • Homemade snacks; for example by making your own flip jacks and brownies you can control the added sugar. 
  • Use sugar alternatives now and again; Stevia is a very popular sweetener at the moment. It can be used in baking or anywhere else you would normally use sugar. 
  • Make sauce from scratch. Bolognese sauce is very simply made by adding onion, garlic, tinned tomatoes and tomato puree together. This reduces the sugar but maintains the taste. 
  • Eating little and often can stabilise your blood sugar levels  


To be continued…next week


Whelehans Nutrition Service

Whelehans nutritional service is a private one to one advice service with our nutritionist Aisling Murray. Aisling’s areas of interest include weight loss management, nutrition education and food intolerance. Our nutrition service offers you the chance to change your life in a positive way by focusing on your overall wellbeing as well as the chance to follow up on your progress.


Aisling Murray has a Bachelor of Science in Nutrition and offers a one to one specialist nutrition service at Whelehans Pharmacy. Plans start from €10 per week. Call Whelehans at 04493 34591 for an appointment

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