I’ve been on a mission to get our family healthier by cutting out a lot of processed foods and to add in more vegetables and healthy fats like nuts and avocados. We’ve been doing really well! The kids don’t seem to miss out on all the sugary snacks and sweets – UNLESS they go to the grocery store and actually SEE all those inner aisles full of cookies, crackers, and chips. I just read a parenting article on Yahoo! Parenting that the average American kid consumes 20 teaspoons of sugar daily (80 grams)! DAILY! That is more than FIVE TIMES the recommended amount! That’s a problem especially considering that sugar as been linked to so many health problems such as obesity, compromised immunity, type 2 diabetes, hyperactivity, tooth decay, allergies, and digestive problems. “The problem is that it really adds up,” Melissa Halas-Liang, pediatric nutritionist and founder of
SuperKidsNutrition.com, an organization that provides nutrition workshops and resources to parents and schools throughout the nation, told Yahoo! Parenting.
But, my kids don’t get that much sugar, right??!! WRONG! Sugar is hiding in the most unsuspecting foods! Check out this list of common foods that are most likely in all our houses that our kids consume on a daily basis that are full of sugar! You think you’re giving your kids “healthy” food but it’s really full of hidden sugar. Here’s 10 foods that contain hidden sugar that you’re probably missing!
1. Yogurt – Just a quick glance at a tube of flavored yogurt and you’ll see that it’s filled with sugar, artificial colors and flavors! Look for more natural alternatives the next time you’re at the store. Greek yogurt is often a better choice!
2. Ketchup – Yes! Another surprising source of sugar – up to 4 grams in ONE tablespoon. Try mixing it with an all natural marinara sauce that has NO added sugar. I bet your kids won’t be able to tell!
3. Pasta Sauce – Another unsuspecting source! Read those labels! Often it’s a better choice to make up a big batch of homemade and freeze portions for future use. Plus you can add in some more veggies to up the health value!
4. Instant Oatmeal – What kid doesn’t like the instant brown sugar and cinnamon variety?! Full of sugar. Make your own rolled oats on the stove and top with fresh fruit and nuts. Know how much sugar is going in instead of just assuming it’s healthy since it’s oatmeal.
5. Breakfast Cereal – I bet you knew this one had to be there. But did you know even the “healthy” cereals have a ton of sugar? Check labels and aim for one with 6 grams or less.
6. Nut Butters – Yes! Even those yummy “all natural” peanut, cashew and even almond butters can have added sugar. Check the label and buy the brand that only has one ingredient – nuts.
7. Jam and Jelly – One serving of jelly can have 13 grams of sugar in it! That’s almost your daily allowance! Chose jams that are only sweetened with fruit. That will help!
8. Salad Dressings – You think you’re making a good choice since you’re giving your kids a salad – but that dressing can be full of sugar! Try olive oil, citrus, or other one ingredient dressings.
9. Milk – flavored milk is full of sugar! Choose milk that says “unsweetened” if you’re going for almond, chocolate or other flavored milks.
10. Sports drinks – Yes, those drinks that you think are doing your child good isn’t much better than soda! Choose plain water, coconut water or water flavored with fruit and pinch of salt. That is much better than all the sugar and artificial flavors your kids will be consuming!
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.