5 Surprising Sneaky Foods High in Sugar

Let’s face it, who doesn’t love sugar?!

Sugar gives us energy throughout the day but consuming it in high amounts is very bad for our health. Exactly why is it that bad? Studies show that high sugar intake is associated with various illnesses, i.e. cancer, obesity, diabetes, heart diseases, teeth issues, etc. It's also linked to a higher risk of developing acne and faster skin aging! Yikes! 

Of course, we’re not putting sugar directly on top of our food where we can see it, so where does all this extra sugar come from? Well, for one, the majority of our added sugar intake is hidden inside a lot of processed and packaged foods. On top of that, these are even marketed as healthy foods! No surprise there since sugar comes in so many disguises such as dextrose, high-fructose corn syrup, maltose, and sucrose, to name a few.

Here are our five sneaky food picks:

1. GRANOLA

Granola’s main ingredient is oats, and thus, can be considered as a healthy option. BUT, the nutrition in these oats is destroyed when combined with the other ingredients – from maple syrup to honey to chocolate to other sweeteners, and voila! You ultimately have a dessert on your hands!

Try this instead:

Check our original Feel Good Muesli flavors!

Swap granola with muesli. Muesli is made from raw ingredients such as dried fruits, nuts, oats, and seeds. Unlike granola, muesli does not need a sweetener to bind all the ingredients and does not contain sugar and oil. Aside from feeling better after eating muesli, it also keeps you full for a longer time! Win-win!

2. FLAVORED YOGURT

Yogurt is undoubtedly one of the most popular options for breakfast or snacks. However, not all yogurts have the same benefits when it boils down to nutrition. Most flavored yogurts have around an average of 26g sugar. Eating flavored yogurt is almost the same as eating candy or a chocolate bar!

Try this instead: 

Check out this local brand, Thrive and Co!

Skip the flavored yogurt and opt for plain or even dairy-free yogurt! Plain yogurt might be a bit boring, so don't fret as you may choose to add your own sugar-free ingredients (such as nuts and seeds) as an alternative.

3. BOTTLED SAUCES

Bottled sauces – such as ketchup and barbecue sauce – might taste savory but you wouldn’t believe how many grams of sugar is lurking behind them. USDA states that 100g of ketchup has a whopping 22g of sugar already!

Try this instead:

Looks promising! Check out their IG

Look for sauces with the least amount of sugar added or listed sugar at the bottom of the ingredient list which means it's not a major ingredient of the sauce. Of course, always check your portion sizes too so that you won't exceed the suggested serving size.

4. INSTANT OATMEAL

Oatmeal in its richest form, i.e. whole oats, is one of the healthiest grains and one of the favorite options for breakfast. But when it's processed and becomes what we now know as instant oatmeal, it's now jam-packed (pun intended) with sugar. Choosing instant oatmeal on its own can already spike blood sugar levels, so adding other oatmeal toppings (honey, fruits, etc.) will surely make blood sugar levels skyrocket.

Try this instead:

Feel Good Grocer Gluten-free Whole Rolled Oats

Swap with healthier versions of oatmeal, better if it's plain. Just like muesli, you can soak it and ta-da, you already have overnight oats! You can also combine or add your own ingredients with it like fruits, nuts or seeds.

5. PROTEIN/ENERGY BARS

Protein/Energy bars are well-known for people who spend their entire day in the gym building muscle or just craving for an energy boost. These energy boosts come from - you guessed it - sugar! It’s not uncommon for an energy bar to contain around 14g of sugar or sometimes, even more than a doughnut! Uh-oh.

Try this instead:

Try our All Nuts Trail Mix

If you really want a protein bar, some brands make a low-sugar option so you can choose that. If you’re eating these bars solely because of protein, you may opt for raw nuts and seeds instead. They are protein-rich as well minus the added sugar.

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For an average adult, WHO recommends 5-10 teaspoons of sugar intake per day, which is approximately 20g-50g. If you consume any of the foods in this list daily, you are most likely consuming above the recommended daily sugar intake.

We at Feel Good Grocer challenge you to pause, to really read and scrutinize nutrition labels, and to choose smarter and healthier (sugar-free!) alternatives. Are you up for this? ;)

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