When you go sugar free you get asked a lot of questions about what you eat and what you mean by “sugar free”.
How did your family react or what do you do when offered sugary food?
Here’s some of our more common questions we get asked.
When we say sugar we mean ‘sucrose’, the crystalised white stuff that often goes into coffee. We don’t eat sucrose.
Why don’t you eat sugar/sucrose?
Sucrose is half glucose, half fructose. It’s the fructose half we avoid.
What’s wrong with fructose?
Your body isn’t designed to eat large amounts of fructose. As it passes from your stomach to your blood stream every part of your body refuses to use it and it gets dumped in your liver where it is stored as fat.
Excess fructose has been linked to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, a possible increased risk of heart disease, type II diabetes, and dementia. And it’s really addictive that’s why it is so hard to stop at just one biscuit or to eat sugar “in moderation”.
Do you think you were addicted to sugar?
Absolutely. We craved, we binged, we had withdrawals when we quit. All signs of addiction.
So just sugar/sucrose then? Honey, agave, maple syrup they’re all ok, right?
No unfortunately they all contain fructose.
The only sweeteners we now eat are dextrose & glucose syrup (both pure glucose) and rice malt syrup, which is a like a light version of golden syrup and fructose free. We also enjoy milk and cream which contain lactose and occasionally stevia.
What about fruit? Isn’t fructose ‘fruit sugar’?
Yes fruit does contain fructose and sometimes fructose is known as ‘fruit sugar’. BUT the big difference with fruit is that in its natural state fruit contains fibre.
Having fibre with fructose reduces the damage it can cause. Luckily Mother Nature provides fructose and fibre together with the skin and flesh of the fruit.
What about fruit juice and dried fruit?
Sadly, almost all of the fibre is lost in the juicing process, so when you drink a juice you are getting a large hit of sugar with no natural fibre.
With dried fruit you get a concentrated hit of sugar and tend to eat more than you would if the fruit was in its natural state. There are roughly 70 sultanas in one little 40g box, try eating 70 grapes in one sitting!
How about artificial sweeteners then?
No, they’re not a great option and something we prefer not to eat.
So what do you do when you go out for dinner or to a party?
We enjoy dinner, order carefully to avoid sweet sauces and maybe have some cheese or fruit for dessert. The great thing is these days we don’t go home feeling ill because we’ve over eaten, stuffing a dessert in just because ‘it was there’.
What do your friends and family think?
To begin with they were a little surprised but are now all supportive with some joining us on the sugar free journey.
These are our most commonly asked questions, we’d love to hear yours.
If you’ve quit sugar what questions do you get asked? Or if you’re thinking of quitting sugar what would you like to know?