Sugar by Any Other Name

A sugary treat may settle your sweet tooth, but that’s where its cordial kiss ends. After peeling away that tooth’s enamel, it slithers into your bloodstream where it raises your risk for diabetes, heart disease, and compromised immunity. Of course you need sugar to fuel your brain and body — but not the 180 pounds of refined junk Americans consume annually.

Unfortunately, scanning ingredients for the harmful carb isn’t easy. Sugar disguises itself under a variety of aliases:

Any word that ends in ose (fructose, glucose, dextrose, maltose)
Barley malt
High-fructose corn syrup
Turbinabo sugar.

Try these hints:

Stick to natural sugars like whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and milk to meet your daily energy needs. Avoid processed carbs like white breads, rice, pastas, sodas, candy, and juice cocktails that deliver little but empty calories.

Keep your chromium and vitamin B levels in check — key nutrients in balancing blood sugar, feeling full, and stabilizing energy. A deficiency could spoil your mood and crank up cravings. Talk to your doctor about supplements, or up your intake of oats, fish, and avocado (high in vitamin B) as well as chromium-rich romaine lettuces, onions, and tomatoes.

Pump up your protein. When you splurge on dessert, couple it with a protein-heavy partner to modulate sugar’s digestive samba into your blood (like nuts sprinkled over ice cream or a layer of cheese over apple pie).

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