What the Heck Should I Eat? Sugar & Sweeteners

I've been reading Food, What the Heck Should I Eat? by Mark Hayman, MD and found it so informational! 

I am going to give you the skinny of each chapter throughout the months to come. I want to you to be able to make well informed decisions when it comes to food, you can thank me later 😉

 Lets' start with Sugar & Sweeteners, it’s one of the biggest culprits. Really it's not a food, but it's everywhere and we eat so much of it. 

 Good news: 

*There are some sugars that are ok to have in your diet (all in moderation of course, it’s not a free for all). 

*When you cut out sugar, you’ll see that you’ll have fewer cravings and your body won’t tolerate overly sweet foods. 

*You’ll look younger, longer…BIG PLUS, I think! 

 Not so good news:

Sugar causes obesity, diabetes, heart disease, cancer, dementia, stroke, depression, speeds up the aging process, damages your live like alcohol. 

Facts I found interesting:

1.)  Can you believe almost 20% of our calories come from sugary beverages like soda, sports drinks, juice, & sweetened coffees & teas?

2.)  Sugar is more than empty calories, it promotes inflammation and speeds up weight gain. 

3.)  The food industry adds sugar to almost everything, such as chicken soup, spaghetti sauce, multigrain crackers, bacon, smoked salmon, & salad dressings. Most of the added sugar we consume come from processed foods we buy in grocery stores and fast-food places and restaurants. 

4.)  Sugar is addictive, actually more so than cocaine, what?!! YES!! 

5.)  Sugar spikes your sugar levels and then crashes and that when you crave more sugar and starch.

Think then,  “I’ll use artificial sweeteners,” bad idea, it’s worse, you’ll have more cravings and can push you to binge on more sugar and junk food. 

You must read the ingredients, the nutrition label only tells you how many grams, but not what type of sugar is in it (added or natural).  

 Get familiar with the many words that mean sugar: 


Corn Anything (unless it’s whole corn)

Any derivative of rice (unless it’s vinegar), brown rice syrup

Anything that starts with the word cane

Suffix “-ose”

Malt anything

Prefix “ios-“

Syrup anything



 So…what should I eat?

Fresh, pureed fruit


Organic palm sugar

Date Sugar

Coconut Sugar

Monk Fruit

Organic Maple Syrup


Stevia (sparingly)

Which should I avoid?

-Artificial Sweeteners of all kinds 

-Sugary Beverages

-High-fructose corn syrup and any ingredient with the word syrup in it (except pure organic maple syrup)

-“All Natural” anything. Big Offenders agave syrup, corn syrup, sugarcane, evaporated can juice, brown rice syrup

-Packaged foods that contain added sugar (if it has a long ingredient list, or additives with the suffix “-ose,” that’s usually a sign there’s sugar hidden. 

-Refined white sugar

-Brown sugar

-Aspartame (NurtaSweet or Equal)

-Sucralose (Splenda)

-Saccharin (Sweet’N Low)

-Acesulfame potassium (Equal)

Check your kitchen, do you have foods that contain ingredients we should avoid? As best as you can try to get rid of those foods.

Vanessa Flores