Are you wondering why you're not losing weight, even though you're eating a healthy diet? The culprit may be the hidden sugar in so many apparently healthy foods. If you're eating prepared foods rather than cooking from scratch, you could be downing spoonfuls of sugar without even knowing it. So here are some foods with hidden sugars that will be adding to your waistline …
1. Pasta Sauce
Pasta sauce must be healthy, with all that tomato, right? Only if you're making it yourself. Commercial sauces contain the equivalent of 3-4 teaspoons of sugar. And this is a savory dish! While you might want to add a pinch of sugar to balance the acid of the tomatoes, you wouldn't add 3 teaspoons, would you? So make your own sauce, using canned tomatoes and fresh vegetables - it'll be both tastier and healthier.
2. Breakfast Cereals
It's no surprise that many breakfast cereals are high in sugar, especially those aimed at children. It's the sugar content that makes them so appealing. But even apparently healthy cereals such as oatmeal and bran cereals can have a high sugar content. Check the label - the healthiest option will be making your own oatmeal or porridge.
3. Barbecue Sauce
You should be cautious of any sauce, as they are often high in sugar. Barbecue sauce, ketchup, salad dressings and the like are packed with hidden sugar. If you're generous with the sauce (I love ketchup, and tend to pile it on), you'll be consuming quite a lot. Leave these sauces off your plate, or just have a very small taste.
4. Baked Beans
Baked beans on toast is a really popular snack among the Brits, but it won't be doing British waistlines any good, with up to 4 spoonfuls of added sugar. If you're fond of canned beans yourself, and you're trying to lose weight, egg on toast would be a healthier snack meal.
Takeout may be a treat, but can be a surprisingly sweet one. Ordering a sweet & sour chicken will give you a fair amount of sweetness, with the equivalent of 5 teaspoons of sugar. A korma sauce is another culprit. Even a humble sandwich can have hidden sugars, both in the bread and filling.
6. Energy Drinks
Sodas of any kind are not your friend, especially if you want to lose weight or maintain it at a healthy level. And energy drinks can be some of the worst. Think about it - what's giving you the energy? Not water! Find out just how much sugar your favorite energy drink contains, and you'll probably never touch it again. If you need an energy boost, eat a banana instead.
7. Bottled Teas
Bottled teas have become the next big thing for consumers looking for a refreshing drink. But they're another drink that you wouldn't suspect of being high in sugar - up to TWELVE teaspoons. Horrendous. Quench your thirst with plain water, or if you want some flavor, add slices of lemon.
If you want to lose weight, the best option is to cut out all prepared foods and cook only with fresh ingredients. You'll be able to keep track of how much sugar you're eating, and won't unwittingly sabotage your own efforts with a hidden sugar intake. What is your favorite sweet treat?