Too Much Sugar May Affect Your Nutritional Health

Too Much Sugar May Affect Your Nutritional Health

It looks like science has given us one more reason to pay attention to how much sugar we consume.

A recent study revealed that a high intake of “free sugar” (sugar added to packaged or home cooked foods) can lead to a lower consumption of important nutrients, including calcium and magnesium.  Based on data collected from 6,150 adults, nutritional deficiency was at it’s highest when free-sugar or added sugar consumption reached 25% of their daily calories.  This discovery makes sense, since processed food with high amounts of added sugar tend to be less nutrient dense and contain more empty calories.

It’s important to note that the study also showed that when free-sugar intake makes up less than 5% of overall calories the risk of nutritional deficiency is also present.  This could be related to restrictive dieting and/or not eating enough food since elimination diets have been know to lack important nutrients.

Based on the study mentioned above, added sugar has it’s place and I don’t believe that it needs to be demonized.  However, if too much added sugar can potentially harm our health, it’s probably a good idea to consider limiting how much we consume on a daily basis.  Food for thought.  🙂

Here’s to a happy and healthy week!

Shared with love,



Simple Ways To Cut Back On Sugar

Simple Ways To Cut Back On Sugar

Photo by Brian Chan on Unsplash

When it comes to nutrition, I do not believe in being overly restrictive in any area of your diet unless you are being advised to do so by a medical professional for good solid reasons.  If you enjoy sweets than I believe you should allow yourself to eat them.

It’s important to note that some sugar is actually good for you.  Naturally occurring sugars found in whole foods are an important part of a diverse diet.  We need carbs to function properly.  However, too much added sugar in your diet can throw your body out of whack and  has been linked to some serious health issues.  Added sugars are sugars and syrups that are added to foods or beverages when they are processed or prepared.

Added sugar can show up in foods you might not expect, like salad dressings and bread.  Simple steps like making your own salad dressings and sauces at home can hep you cut back on sugar without sacrificing taste.  While I’m probably not going to start baking bread every week, making my own salad dressing is definitely doable and I can buy bread with no added sugar.

I recommend reading the labels before buying prepared foods.  You don’t need to obsess, just simply become aware of how much sugar you are eating on a daily basis.  If everything you are eating has “added” sugar, consider alternative brands with less sugar or even making some of the food from scratch and skipping the sugar altogether.  Often times, it’s being used for a preservative so removing it from the ingredients list is not that big of a deal.

Here’s a simple salad dressing recipe to help you get started:

This recipe makes two servings so you may want to double or triple the recipe. 🙂

3 Tbsp olive oil

1 Tbsp Apple Cider or White Wine Vinegar

1/4 Tsp salt

1/4 Tsp black pepper or salt free seasoning like Trader Joe’s 21 Seasoning Salute.  It’s okay to get creative.

Place all ingredients in a salad dressing shaker.  You can usually find them in your kitchen section at your local hardware store or search for one on line.  Shake and serve over your favorite salad.

Cutting back on excess sugar isn’t about deprivation.  It’s about creating balance in your daily diet, feeling good, and taking good care of your health.

Here’s to a happy and healthy week!

Shared with love,





You Don’t Ever Have To Diet Again

Pretty young woman in kitchen

When I entered the fitness industry back in 1989 the topic of calories was very cut and dry.  In order to lose weight you simply needed to burn more calories than you were taking in.  Fast forward to today and research is proving that there is way more to the weight loss equation than simple math and a person’s willpower.  In fact, research proves that weight loss is controlled by how our body is functioning more than our own self-control.

I’ve been helping people lose weight for over twenty six years and there was a time when a person’s inability to lose weight would be blamed on an over-reporting of physical activity and an under-reporting of food intake.   While I agree that this does happen from time to time, modern technology such as activity trackers, electronic food journals, and clinical studies are all helping researchers prove it’s usually not the case.  What we’re finding is that biology has more to do with a person’s ability or inability to lose weight than anything else.  I’ve worked with clients that were honestly filling out food journals and reporting their exercise.  Based on the old “calories consumed versus calories burned” math they should have been losing weight but the needle on the scale was not budging.  This not only frustrated them, it  prompted me to help figure out why.

Fitness, just like medicine, is always changing and fortunately we seem to be gaining more knowledge and common sense.  We are learning why the diet industry has a ninety five percent failure rate.  We are also learning how to help people not just lose weight but make balanced food choices that promote long-lasting weight loss while positively contributing to their overall health and well being.  The time has come to just say no to restrictive dieting and yes to healthy living.

Three Things You Can Do To Lose Weight Without Ever Dieting

Avoid low calorie restrictive diets.   It’s no secret that if you starve yourself you will lose weight quickly which is what makes restrictive diets so appealing.  The problem is eventually everyone gains the weight back.  Research shows that you need to eat food to lose weight.  When you cut calories way back or eliminate entire food groups, the body fights back.  Your metabolism will slow down to make up for the reduction in food and you will be hungrier.  Your level of satiety can change which will make you feel less satisfied with an otherwise normal portion size and more obsessed with higher-calorie processed foods.

Instead of restricting what you eat, you’ll find more success when you focus on a balanced diet that is centered around whole foods. A balanced diet includes carbohydrates, proteins, fruits and vegetables, healthy fats, and water. Any diet that cuts one of these important nutrients out should be avoided.

Cut back on Simple Carbs.  This is huge!  All calories are not created equal.  A can of soda and a handful of nuts may have the same calorie count but they affect your metabolism in VERY different ways.  Sugary snacks and drinks, and low fat highly processed starches, can cause your body to store calories as fat which can then cause fat cells to increase in number and size.  Processed carbs and added sugar in foods can program fat cells to grow and as a result cause someone to overeat.  When you limit the simple carbs and focus on eating mostly whole foods, it’s much easier to lose and/or maintain your weight.

Don’t be afraid to eat fat.  Whenever I review a new client’s food journal this is usually one of the number one nutrients I notice is lacking in their diet.  Dietary fat is not only helpful, it’s necessary for long term weight loss.  The body gets really good at storing what it doesn’t get enough of.  Based on the current research and an understanding of how the human metabolism works, I personally believe the low fat diet craze has contributed to many of the weight issues that people struggle with.

Olive oil, nuts, an monounsaturated fats are all part of a healthy diet and research is even taking a second look at the value of saturated fat in our daily lives.  Studies have shown that people that consume dairy have less belly fat.  Stick to whole dairy and avoid the low fat versions.  The idea is moderation.  Butter and cheese are meant to be consumed in small amounts.

Just like calories, not all fat is good for you.  Avoid chemically processed fat like partially hydrogenated oils also known as transfats which are usually found in boxed, frozen, and snack foods.  Transfats not only increase levels of harmful cholesterol in your body they inhibit your body’s ability to make good cholesterol.  Not a good combination so it’s best to stay away from them entirely.

These simple dietary strategies combined with moving more, getting plenty of sleep, and limiting stress in your life are not only the healthiest and most effective way for you to lose weight, they also help you maintain balance in your life.

To your long term health and fitness!

With Love,

The material in this article is intended for informational purposes only and not intended as a substitute for the advice and care of your physician.  Always consult with your physician before starting a new weight loss program or making major changes to your diet.