Most people think of sugar as an ingredient that’s in sodas, candy, donuts, cakes, cereal, and other goods. The truth is, sugar is in far more foods than you might think – in fact about three-quarters of the foods we eat in the U.S. contain this not-so-healthy ingredient. Why does sugar get a bad rap – and is it really that terrible?
When consumed in moderation, and from the right sources, it isn’t something you should be concerned about. For example, oranges, apples and other fruits contain natural sugar, which is actually healthy for consumers. The problem is the extra sugar we consume, which is difficult to avoid considering it’s nearly everywhere.
How is sugar detrimental to health? Not only does consuming too much sugar contribute to weight gain, it also increases the risk of heart disease over time and can lead to, or worsen, diabetes, a huge health problem in our country. Considering sugar is in 75% of packaged foods, it seems it would be impossible to avoid it.
Here’s what to do
First of all, make sure to read all packaged food labels. It’s important to know labels may have different wording than simply “sugar.” Some of the ingredients you may see include corn sweetener, fructose, corn syrup, corn syrup solids, crystal dextrose or anhydrous dextrose. While it’s impossible to avoid every food that contains sugar, you can cut down dramatically by simply reading the labels.
Have to sweeten your coffee or hot tea? Consider honey, a much healthier alternative. Instead of drinking soda, try some water with lemon or unsweetened tea. Many people drink soft drinks (Coke, Dr. Pepper, etc.) from the time they get up in the morning until they finish dinner at night – a recipe for disaster.
Sugar that occurs naturally, such as that found in vegetables, fruit, and milk, are not a problem; it’s the added sugars that are the culprit.
Cutting down on added sugar is tricky, given that it’s in so many packaged and processed foods. The American Heart Association has provided a few tips you’ll find useful on how to cut down on sugar.
Unhealthy foods are everywhere – in school cafeterias, retail restaurants, grocery stores, corporate dining, concessions, catering. The good news is, consumers have been focusing on healthier eating over the past year or two, making changes in their eating habits for a healthier, longer life.
At Gourmet Services Inc., we are doing our part as a contract foodservices company by offering the freshest, high-quality ingredients and foods to help people enjoy a satisfying dining experience that’s not only delicious, but healthy. If you’re in search of a foodservice company to help put your menu and preparation methods on the right track, trust Gourmet Services for nothing but the best.