If I’m going to cut sugar out of my diet, I need to be clear about what I mean by “sugar”. So I thought I’d explore this topic a little and figure out what the heck I mean when I say I’m “quitting sugar”. So here goes…
The Many Faces of Sugar
A quick search on planet Google, gave me some food for thought. The first form of sugar that I think of when I say “sugar” is granulated table sugar. Here’s what Wikipedia says about sugar:
“Sugar is a term for a class of edible crystalline carbohydrates, mainly sucrose, lactose, and fructose, characterized by a sweet flavor. In food, sugars refer to all monosaccharides and disaccharides present in food, but excludes polyols, while in its singular form, sugar normally refers to sucrose, which in its fully refined (or free sugar) form primarily comes from sugar cane and sugar beet, though is present in natural form in many carbohydrates. Other free sugars are used in industrial food preparation, but are usually known by more specific names—glucose, fructose or fruit sugar, high fructose corn syrup, etc.”
That’s a pretty good place to start, but how relevant will all of that be when I’m in a grocery store trying to decipher the nutrition labels I’m reading?