As I mentioned in my previous post, I’m big on trying to decrease the amount of sugar I eat on foods that are not desserts. Foods that people may already know are jammed packed with sugar are breakfast cereals. The amount obviously varies between brands and types, but most cereals contain an astounding amount of it, which is not the best to eat as a first meal to start your day. It took me a while to find a sugarless cereal locally. For a time, I ordered it online…and then one day I found it at a HEB grocery store! I was pleasantly surprised, and happy that I no longer had to order multiple packages at a time.
It was after I took a nutrition class at the University several years ago, that I began to more intentionally pursue decreasing my consumption of sugar. Even before then, and for 20+ years, my gynecologist has advised that all women should follow a low sugar, low red meat diet. Regardless of the amount of time between office visits, I heard this message from him every single time. So I suppose you could say that overtime I have been brainwashed.
Not really. Someone telling me for many years that I needed to decrease the consumption of sugar is not what made me want to decrease it. I think it would be extreme and not realistic to eliminate all sugar from our diets. However, after contemplating it long enough, I thought it was possible, and it was time for me to make some changes that would not make me feel deprived. I have made small changes at a time and I continue to love and enjoy all types of foods.
On my last post, I mentioned that I stopped drinking orange juice from one day to the next, but in reality, the work I had previously done trying other drinks and learning to love tea at other times of the day helped; so the mental work required to make the change was not that difficult. I began with eliminating the regular consumption of orange juice at breakfast, and since then, I have made many other small changes.
I am not an expert, but if I would have to explain how I came to make changes in my consumption of sugar, I would say that I first had to acknowledge that there was an issue that I wanted to address; I then spent a lot of time internalizing, reading and learning about it; then I expressed my desire to take action, and finally, I began to change my habits. I think the key was identifying something specific and finding a replacement that did not make me feel deprived, and this has helped me stay consistent.
Being consistent does not have to mean being inflexible. For example with regards to this particular breakfast cereal, it has zero sugar, but it does taste better with fresh fruit, and I eat it with a small banana. The banana adds other important nutrients to my diet, so they are not empty calories. The cereal has plenty of protein, which keeps me full until lunch time with no urges to snack in between. The best part is that it is super easy to prepare, and if I am running short on time, I keep disposable bowls and spoons to eat the cereal on the road!
The cereal brand is Earnest Eats and HEB carries three varieties that come in a similar package, but only the one on the picture below has zero sugar. The others have sugar from added fruit. The company also makes single serve versions and breakfast bars, but I have not tried looking for them, so I am not sure if they are available locally. The link below shows a picture of a 4 variety pack.
I have not yet come across another cereal that has zero sugar, but I am always looking. Comment below if you know of one. I would like to try others.
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