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Aging Well: Use common sense, detective work to be sugar smart

Names for added sugars

■ White or granulated white sugar

■ Brown sugar

■ Confectioners sugar

■ Raw sugar

■ Turbinado sugar

■ Date sugar

■ Maple sugar or syrup

■ Cane juice or syrup

■ Corn syrup or sweeteners

■ High-fructose corn syrup

■ Invert sugar

■ Fruit juice concentrate

■ Malt sugar or syrup

■ Syrup

■ Honey

■ Molasses

■ Agave nectar

■ Sugar molecules ending in “ose” (dextrose, glucose, sucrose, etc.)

Sources: The Mayo Clinic and Harvard School of Public Health

Low-sugar drink ideas

■ Infused water: Add citrus or cucumber slices, fresh mint or other herbs or peeled and sliced ginger to your glass of water.

■ Tea: Tea is naturally calorie-free, so adding a teaspoon of sugar or honey is fine. Some teas taste sweet without sugar. Black and green teas also are rich in antioxidants and flavonoids that might be good for health.

■ Coffee: Coffee is calorie-free, but avoid loading it with cream and sugar. Pass on coffeehouse confections with whipped cream and sugar syrups, which can have upwards of 300 to 400 calories per extra-large cup.

■ Sparkling water with a splash of juice: Sparkling juices sold ready-made often are heavy on the juice and may have almost as many calories as soda. Make your own at home with 12 ounces of sparkling water and an ounce or two of juice. For a flavor twist, add sliced citrus or fresh herbs.

■ Fresh fruit cooler: Store-bought or cafe smoothies often are loaded with sugar and high in calories. Make a sugar-free fresh fruit cooler instead: Place 1/2 cup ice, 3/4 cup sparkling water, 1/3 cup melon or berries and chopped mint leaves or citrus slices in a blender. Blend until slushy.

Source: Harvard School of Public Health