Seven deadly sins of sugar

Gert Coetzee, Pharmacist and Diet pioneer, who founded The Diet Everyone Talks About comments on the mistakes that people make when they start a new diet.

“Now is a perfect time to take stock of your health. Changing your lifestyle feels right, right about now! Exercise and diet are vital in achieving a more balanced lifestyle, but while we embark on this journey, there are some common mistakes people make when it comes specifically to sugar consumption. It is also important to note that sugar itself (even if you are not going on a diet) is harmful to your health. An excess of sugar not only leads to weight gain but also blood sugar problems, an increased risk of heart disease and many other dangerous conditions.

“It is essential to do your research before starting a new diet. Whether you are wanting to control your sugar consumption or trying to cut sugar entirely out of your diet, there are some mistakes you could be making, which will ultimately sabotage your efforts.

Below are the seven deadly sins of sugar when going on a diet:

1. Going for too many sugar-free drinks: Sugar-free drinks mat contain sugar alcohols (a popular sugar alternative) which may contain enough carbs to raise your insulin and blood sugar levels. If you decide to go for sugar-free drinks, do it in moderation.

2. Replacing sugar with sweeteners: Replacing sugar with sweeteners sounds like a good idea but does it really benefit your health? The sweeteners that you use in place of sugar can have a lot of adverse effects on your health. Also, some ‘no sugar added’ foods have artificial sweeteners and naturally occurring sugar. Try avoiding sweeteners altogether, a cup of coffee on its own is not such a bad idea. In fact, once you get used to not having sugar in your coffee, it becomes really satisfying to taste the pure coffee taste,

3. Going fat-free: A lot of people go for ‘fat-free’ products as they are said to help with weight loss. Your body needs good fats, and ‘fat-free’ products are usually packed with sugar. Instead of going the ‘fat-free’ route, rather eat more healthy fats such as those found in avocados, egg yolks and fish. The fats you should be worried about are trans and saturated fats which are found in foods such as fried food, pastries, desserts and sausages.

4. Eating a lot of fruit: Fruits contain a natural sugar called fructose. Even though fruits contain some nutrients which are good for your body, the sugar found in them can have a negative effect if eaten in excess, leading to more sugar cravings. An overconsumption of sugar does not only apply to the spoons of sugar you put in your food; it applies to all other types of sugar, including the natural sugar found in fruits.

5. Mixing your gin with tonic: When having a glass of gin, a lot of people use tonic as a mixer because it is dry. Gin is a popular alcoholic beverage and if you’re going to have some, mix it with a sugar-free tonic as it is a better option compared to normal tonic.

6. Not reading food labels: People assume that ‘no sugar added’, ‘no added sugar’, and ‘0 grams of added sugar’ means that the food is sugar-free but what it actually means is that there is no sugar added during the food’s manufacturing process. Chances are, if you see this written on a food label, the product already has too much sugar in it. Make sure that You consider sugar, carb, and sugar alcohol amounts per serving, so be sure to scan through the ingredient list of any food you buy.

7. Chomping down on Protein bars: Many people replace chocolate bars with protein bars as they assume that they are a healthier option. The truth is that protein bars are often high in kilojoules and contain rice syrup, honey, and molasses, which all have high sugar content.”

The great news is that during lockdown, The Diet Everyone Talks About can still assist you in your lifestyle choices and weight loss. Consultations can be done online. Simply contact (016) 362 4890 or send an email to: