Sugar has attracted a lot of attention recently, particularly with the introduction of the long-awaited sugar tax.
The new levy has soft drinks firmly in its sights, which are often jam-packed with sugar, making it all too easy for us to sip away our daily allowance.
To help you reclaim your sugar quota, we have some smile-saving sugar swaps to share.
Sugar swap #1: large caramel macchiato with drizzle for green tea
Your favourite flavoured coffee – complete with syrup and sprinkles – could easily have the same amount of calories as a small meal and more than your daily allowance of sugar. The NHS recommends around 30g of sugar a day while a large caramel macchiato contains a whopping 40g of sugar.
Instead, opt for a no-frills latte, which has half the sugar of a caramel macchiato. Better still, go for green tea. Green tea contains zero sugar and a study has shown that people who drink green tea regularly have better oral health. Result!
Sugar saving: 40g
Sugar swap #2: raspberry caipirinha for a martini
Some occasions call for a cocktail. Unfortunately, most cocktails call for sugar. The average raspberry caipirinha contains around 20g of sugar, and not much else. It’s also far too easy to enjoy more than one and quickly exceed your daily sugar allowance.
To save on sugar, take inspiration from Bond and order a martini, or celebrate with a glass of champers. Both options contain less than 3g of sugar.
Sugar saving: 17g
Sugar swap #3: cola for sparkling water and fruit
You may have seen first-hand how cola can dissolve teeth or double as a toilet cleaner. One single can of cola contains about 35g of sugar – that’s the equivalent of 12 sugar cubes! If you make just one change to your diet, cutting out soft drinks is a great place to start.
A refreshingly fizzy alternative to cola and other high-sugar soft drinks is sparkling water with fresh fruit. Soda water contains no sugar, so you’ll be in control of how much sugar your drink contains. Add a squeeze of fresh lime or a slice of melon and your drink will still contain less than 2g of sugar.
Sugar saving: 33g
Sugar swap #4: flavoured water for coconut water
Flavoured water might seem virtuous, but a small bottle can contain 40g of sugar – more than a can of cola!
Check labels carefully because they’re not all bad. Alternatively, try coconut water. While it contains some sugar – around 10g per glass – it’s also high in antioxidants and minerals.
Sugar saving: 30g
Sugar swap #5: frozen blended coffee for an iced latte
Brace yourself: a large frozen blended coffee can contain as much as 69g of sugar. That’s over twice your recommended daily allowance – and that doesn’t even include the optional whipped cream.
A far better choice is an iced latte – still coffee-flavoured, still cold, but with 54g less sugar!
Sugar saving: 54g