Reduce Your Sugar and Get Rid of Those Love Handles!
In order to better understand how decreasing your daily sugar intake can decrease your “love handles,” it is important to note the sugar pathway of the body. When sugar is first digested, it travels to the liver. The liver can only store so much sugar, so excess sugar is transported to muscles where it can later be converted into physical energy. The muscles also have a storage capacity for sugar. If this limit is exceeded and sugar is not converted into energy through exercise, then remaining sugars are stored as adipose tissue (aka: FAT).
There are many different kinds of sugars: fructose (natural sugars that come from fruit), sucrose (granulated sugar), lactose (sugar found in milk), etc. It is important to note that the liver prefers fructose over other forms of sugar. Fructose is quickly and easily metabolized and has the ability to rapidly convert into usable energy. Other sugars eaten in addition to fructose have a higher chance of being stored as fat. If weightless is your goal, then opt for a piece of fruit over something processed, like a granola bar.
If we want to lose weight, then we should aim to have less than 40 grams of sugar per day (that tends to be the amount that the liver and muscles can use in a given day).
This chart should give you an idea of how much sugar is in the foods we commonly eat:
Fructose-Based Foods Sugar Content
- 1 medium-sized banana 4 tablespoons (15 grams)
- 1 cup strawberries 2 tablespoons (7 grams)
- 1 cup grapes 5 tablespoons (20 grams)
- 1 cup cantaloupe (cubed) 3 tablespoons (13 grams)
- 1 navel orange 6 tablespoons (23 grams)
- 1 large apple 6 tablespoons (23 grams)
- 1 large peach 3.5 tablespoons (15 grams)
- 1 cup watermelon (cubed) 4.25 tablespoons (18 grams)
- 1 cup pineapple (cubed) 2.25 tablespoons (9 grams)
Non Fructose-Based Foods Sugar Content
- 2 slices white bread 3 teaspoons (compared to sucrose)
- 1 bowl cereal 4-5 teaspoons
- 1 bagel 4-5 teaspoons
- ½ cup dried fruit 4 teaspoons
- ½ cup fruit juice 3-4 teaspoons
- 1 can soda 9 teaspoons
- 1 cup chocolate milk 6 teaspoons
- 1 bowl ice cream 23 teaspoons
To monitor your daily sugar intake, just start checking the labels of the foods that you consume (and make sure that you are not eating more than 1 serving at a time). To find out the sugar content of natural foods, such as fruits, check online by using search engines such as Google.
And remember…..life can still be sweet without the sugar. You’re love handles can thank me later 🙂