Poor sugar…misunderstood, unnaturally consumed, incorrectly written about and inappropriately used. There are those of us that consume too much of it, too little of it or consume it via the wrong means. Sugar comes from the sugarcane – a completely natural plant, so yes sugar IS natural! But what is too often than not unnatural about the role of sugar in our modern diets is how its consumed. Sugar provides us with a vital source of energy and our taste buds are designed to recognise sugar and seek it. The problem now is that we consume it by eating man made products rather than natural foods.
Recently I was asked to provide some advice on weaning children off sugar and helping them to consume it in a healthier, more balanced way by a magazine. So I thought I’d share some of my suggestions with you below.
> Select sweets that contain some fat and protein such as toffees, milk bottles and fudge. Even sweets containing gelatine have some protein like Jelly Babies!
> Get that sweet chewy fix with dried fruit such as raisins, pineapple, papaya and sweetened coconut.
> Serve sweet deserts like jelly and sorbets with ice-cream, yoghurt or cream.
> If your child wants a sugary drink offer them a milkshake, smoothie or coconut water with fruit juice.
> Select biscuits that are oat based and preferably made with butter or palm oil.
> Better options for cakes, tarts and other deserts are those made with saturated fat and protein such as brownies, soufflé, crème brulee, cheesecake, custard tarts, trifle and Christmas cake.
> If you have time, start making your own sweet treats so you can use sugar alternatives like honey, pre-soaked dried fruit and stevia.
> Pressed dried fruit and nut bars make a great alternative to cereal bars.
> Add cinnamon, honey, fruit or cocoa powder to porridge and bland cereals instead of sugar.
> Eat fruits at their ripest for a sweeter taste.
> Instead of ice-lollies, buy or make ice-cream, frozen yoghurt or homemade ice-lollies with coconut water & fruit juice.
For more tips on sugar, feel free to contact me via my contact page.