Singapore is one of the most sleep deprived nations in the world with almost 8 to 10 Singaporeans spending their weekends trying to repay their sleep debt. But can that actually work?
How Much Sugar Are You Consuming?
We all love our sweet treats and desserts, but are we consuming too much sugar?
HOW MUCH SUGAR ARE YOU CONSUMING A DAY?
With plenty of F&B trends such as artisan and creative confectionary to the ever-popular bubble tea, it is no surprise that sugar consumption among Singaporeans on average are higher than recommended. Late last year, it was reported that Singaporeans are consuming 60g on average a day, more than twice the World Health’s Organisation’s (WHO) recommendation of 25g1 (5.25 teaspoons).
However, most people are unsure about the amount of sugar they are consuming while eating their favourite dessert or slurping down a refreshing soda. For a general guide, here are the sugar contents in some common desserts and drinks.
It is no secret that sugar consumed in excessive amounts over a long period of time contributes to weight gain, and also increases the risks of diabetes. An additional intake of a 250ml sweetened drink daily increases the risk of diabetes by 18 to 26 percent, according to Health Promotion Board2.
5 HACKS TO CURB SUGAR CRAVINGS
There are many reasons and causes of sugar cravings - whether you have a sweet tooth, or your body might be unconsciously craving the sugar rush as a stress reliever or simply because you need a quick mid-day pick-me-up treat.
It is fine when you give in to your sugar cravings once in a while; the problem is when we allow it to become a daily habit. Read on for tips on how to nip your sugar cravings in the bud before it has a chance to negatively impact our long-term health and result in chronic health conditions.
We live in a sleep deprived nation, where 44% of us sleep for less than 7 hours a night3. When we do not get enough sleep, we feel tired and our bodies’ hunger signals are mixed up, making us feel hungry when we are actually not. We then reach out to sugar for a quick fix, and fall back into the cycle of a sugar high and energy crash later.
Having good quality sleep is important, not only to prevent sugar cravings, but also to support our body’s optimum functioning. Click here to find out more on how we can make sure we get a good night’s rest.
People often mistake lack of water consumption for sugar cravings and hunger pangs. Insufficient water intake may make it difficult for our bodies to metabolise glycogen for energy, thus making our bodies crave sugar for the quick energy fix. An average adult needs about 2 litres of water a day.
Before you reach out for a cookie, ask yourself if you have had water or if you are actually feeling thirsty.
Consume Fruits and Vegetables That Are High in Fibre
When it comes to overcoming sugar cravings, it really does boil down to mind over matter. You need to make a conscious effort to choose healthier options such as fruits and vegetables that are high in fibre. Fibre-rich foods helps to provide satiety and wholesome foods like fruits and vegetables supplies our bodies with important nutrients needed to maintain good health.
Consider making yourself a green smoothie as a delicious substitute for that high fat, sugary sweet milkshake… yes, we mean “that milkshake with ice cream”.
When you start to accustom your body and taste palate to healthy, wholesome nutrient-packed options, your body will slowly stop craving for the empty-calorie sugary stuff.
Eat Proper Meals Regularly
Irregular meal times or too long of an interval between meals may make you turn to sugary and fatty foods to curb your hunger. Instead, you can opt to have small meals every 3 to 5 hours, and choose to include protein and healthy fats in your meals, such as whole grains, fish, poultry and eggs. They keep you feeling fuller for a longer period of time and provide you with energy, so your body doesn’t find the need to turn to sweet treats. Eating healthily and regularly helps to balance your blood sugar levels too!
Take Glucose Management Supplements
Sometimes, all we need is a little extra help! For some days when you feel guilty over giving into your temptations, try taking GNC Herbal Plus® Bitter Melon Complex which contains a high potency of Bitter Melon extract that has natural insulin-like properties to help with glucose utilisation. Another great option would be GNC PN Healthy Blood Sugar Formula, which contains clinically studied Reducose® that may help to improve carbohydrates metabolism, and a blend of nutrients and herbs for glucose metabolism. To combat your sugar cravings, you may find GNC Chromium Picolinate useful.
Sweet treats are not all that bad; they lift our moods up and are a joy to eat. However, it is important to be responsible for our own health and consume them in moderation.
1Kalik, S. (19 Nov, 2018). Retrieved June, 2019, from www.straitstimes.com: https://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/health/salt-and-sugar-intake-way-too-high-though-fruit-and-veg-consumption-improving-hpb
2 Baker, J. A. (16 Dec, 2018). Retrieved June, 2019, from www.channelnewsasia.com: https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/sugary-soft-drinks-effects-diabetes-weight-gain-11027204
3 Goh, T. (11 Dec, 2018). Retrieved June, 2019, from www.straitstimes.com: https://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/health/survey-finds-4-in-10-singaporeans-not-getting-enough-sleep-but-those-above-55-sleep