How to Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth Without Packing on the Pounds

When you are dieting, it is really hard to satisfy that nagging sweet tooth that keeps telling you to eat more and more sweets. It screams: Chocolate! Ice Cream! Candy Bars! There are so many types of sweets out there. From pies to cookies to cakes, you are sure to have cravings for something sweet. This craving can be pesky when you are trying to lose weight. Here you will find a few ways to satisfy that sweet tooth while still eating healthy and losing weight. No matter what you are doing, you are sure to find yourself wondering what there is to eat around you that is sweet. One of the most popular sweets is chocolate. Try something that is sweet that will not have you worrying all day about how many calories you may have forced into your mouth – okay, so maybe you did not force it, you ate it willingly. Do not feel guilty the next time you are tempted to eat something sweet, instead go for a wise option instead of an unhealthy one.

While it may seem easy to fork down a few pieces of cake, maybe you should try sticking with smaller portions. Do not eat a giant helping of sweets, instead eat a smaller portion. Take the time to find a portion that will give you exactly what you need. There are a lot of different low calorie snacks out there that are sweet. You can even find some that are prepackaged that tell you exactly how many calories you will be eating. Usually when you want something sweet it is not because you are necessarily hungry but rather you want something to fight off that edge of sweet tooth that is nagging at you.

There are many different options out there for you. You will find that even choices such as fresh fruit will help you to cut out that sweet tooth and satisfy it. When you are aching for some chocolate, try darker chocolate. It is usually better for you and has a lot of antioxidants that are not only good for you, but they also allow you to have the sweets that your body is craving.

If you want something cold and creamy, then you should try low calorie ice cream or non fat yogurt. You can also try something such as sorbet. These are often much healthier options. A pudding cup can also do just the trick that you are looking for when you want something small and sweet.

No matter what it is that you are wanting that is sweet, you are sure to find alternatives that can be much healthier for you. With more and more health foods becoming available on the market, you are sure to be able to find just about anything that you could imagine on a shelf in a health food store that would compare to what you would want. You may even find that it is not half bad and you may even enjoy it if you give it a try.

Health Benefits of Fruits

Fruits are some of the most beautiful creations of God and given to us for food. Humans have gathered wild fruits for food since the time of Adam and Eve. Indeed, many people appreciate the beauty and taste of fruits, but without giving much thought about their goodness and nutritional value. Simple sugars like fructose and sucrose as well as some fibres are the main nutritional components of fruits. They are also the best source of natural sweeteners packed with smaller amounts of many other nutrients like Vitamins A and C, and minerals like potassium. Fruits contain a wide variety of nutrients that needed by us to support good health. The succulent and irresistible taste of wholesome fruits has surely earned them a place of honour in the diet of natural food.

When purchasing fruits, it is best to select fruits that are local and in season. Fruits with a cooling nature are more suitable for people with overheated blood systems. According to traditional Chinese medicine, cooling fruits can cause wind and should not be taken by persons with a cool blood system. Wind in the body may cause tremors, convulsion, spasms and travelling pain. Certain cooling fruits can aggravate epilepsy, arthritis and rheumatism. Therefore, it is very important to understand the nature of fruits, that is whether they are cooling, neutral or warming in nature before consuming them so that fruits are beneficial to the body and not vice versa. Refer to the few examples below that I would like to share about the health benefits of each of them:

The apple is a fruit with a cooling nature, sweet and slightly sour. Sweet, red apples have a more neutral nature. Apples have very little vitamin C and this is easily lost when they are stored for too long. With a low sodium but high potassium content, apples enhance the muscle functions of the heart, thus strengthening it. Apples quench thirsts, normalise blood pressure and cholesterol, relieve constipation when eaten with skin, it also aids digestion and increase appetite in convalescing persons. For people with cool blood system, steam apples may help to reduce the cooling effect.

Dates are a neutral to warming nature and sweet. They are rich in phosphorus, Vitamin B 2 and C. Red dates nourish the body fluids and blood, tone the spleen and stomach, stop diarrhoea, detoxify and harmonise the internal body, as well as calm the mind. Dates lubricate the lungs and stop coughs. Black dates are made from red dates that are dried in the sun and then steamed and baked. This is done repeatedly until they turn black. They are slightly warming in nature. Please be cautious that too many dates may cause distended stomaches and create mucous.

Kiwi fruits are cooling in nature, sweet and sour. They contain more than 100% of Vitamin C of our daily needs, fibre and magnesium. They lower cholesterol and blood pressure, build stronger arteries and are good for skeletal repair and growth. When buying kiwi fruits, select fruits that are firm, but give in slightly when pressed. They are best taken chilled and plain, scooped directly from the skin with a teaspoon. Please be cautious that kiwi fruits may trigger coughing spasm or wheezing in persons who are allergic to it

Pineapples are a neutral to warming nature, sweet and sour. The most nourishing pineapples are the sun-ripened ones. The fullness of the eyes and strong aroma are good indicators of ripeness. Check the fruit stalk for freshness. Do not pick pineapples with shriveled fruit stalks. Sour or not ripened pineapples are less warming. Pineapples are good for quenching thirst. They help keep up a healthy spleen, aid digestion and urination, reduce swelling, stop diarrhoea and remove heat from body.

Star fruits are a cooling to warming nature, sweet and slightly astringent. Green and sour fruits are more cooling in nature while the yellow and sweet ones are more warming. Star fruits aid in the formation of body fluids and activate saliva production. They promote urination and reduce fevers. Star fruits also help digestion and relieve stomach disorders, lover blood pressure, ease coughing and throat inflammation and help the detox of body

Other Health Benefits of Fruits such as:

Pomegranate Health Benefits

Personally, I like fruits a lot and have tried to include different fruits in my daily diet. By eating different types of fruits, it improves my health a lot and the problem of constipation no long bother me at all since i started this “fruit rich” diet about 2 years ago. Everyone of us should try to gain more knowledge about the health benefits of fruits and include as much fruits as possible into your daily diet.

Sweets After Weight Loss Sugery: Smart Choices

Sweets are a real problem for people who have undergone gastric bypass or lap-band weight loss surgery. Patients report feelings of loss for sweets and strong cravings. Yet patients know sweets pose several problems after weight loss surgery including dumping syndrome and weight gain. Patients who indulge in sweets not only get physically ill they also suffer feelings of failure and self-loathing for lack of will power.

According to Dr. David Katz in his book The Way to Eat a sweet tooth is not a matter of will power it is a matter of genetics. Early humans found sugar was a quick source of energy when they consumed it in the form of fruit, honey and sugar cane. So the tendency to like sweet is in our genetic code. But the difference today from then: sugar is now highly processed and in abundant supply.

Dieters consider sugar evil and blame sweets for weight gain. According to Dr. Katz “Sugary foods are often high-fat, calorie-dense foods as well; the pleasant taste of sugar stimulates high intake while the fat does much of the damage in terms of calories, weight gain and adverse health affects.”

I like that Dr. Katz’s attributes our genetic code for the sweet tooth – in my pre-WLS dieting life I considered myself a weak failure for having a sweet tooth. Unfortunately, my bariatric surgeon didn’t fix my genetic code for sweets. But what did happen during the early post-op and the weight loss phases is my interest in sweets waned. I believe once I was off the carb-fat-sugar roller coaster my body adapted to the more nutritional diet without processed sweets.

Limit Sugar For Health:
General health guidelines indicate we should limit sugar intake, particularly processed sugar. Dr. Katz advises “Make some general commitment about the acceptable place of sweet foods in your diet.” He adds, “Such a commitment is only as good as your follow-through, of course. But making decisions about tempting foods at a time other than when you are tempted is a good strategy in general.”

For WLS people with gastric bypass that commitment is firm – most patients will get sick (dumping) if they consume sugary products. Lap-band patients don’t live with that fear, they need some personal resolve to limit or avoid sugar products. For all of us the desire to maintain our weight loss should be a good motivator.

Sugar Substitutes:
So far we have two facts: 1- We are genetically coded to desire sweets and 2- We need to limit sugar intake for our health. Could two facts be more contradictory?

A variety of artificial sweeteners are available from the sugar alcohols (Sorbitol, Xylitol and Mannitol) that cause gas and bloating problems to the non-nutritive sweeteners such as Saccharine, Aspartame and Sucralose (Splenda). Dr. Andrew Weil, author of “The Healthy Kitchen” is concerned about the use of artificial sweeteners. In his book he says, “In the first place, there is no evidence that they help anyone lose weight, although that is why people use them…Second, most of them taste funny. And, most important, the highly popular ones may be harmful.” He sites studies that link Saccharin and Aspartamine to health problems.

Dr. Weil recommends sucralose, sold under the band name Splenda. He said, “It tastes better than aspartame and appears safer.”

Splenda, Sugar and WLS Diet:
In general nutritionists working with WLS patients agree Splenda is an acceptable sweetener for patients when used in moderation. (Moderation – that word comes up a lot in our WLS food discussions!)

Many recipes can be adjusted to use all Splenda or a blend of Splenda and sugar. Using a blend of sugar and Splenda produces the best results for texture and moistness yet cuts half of the calories and carbohydrates. Using all Splenda eliminates all sugar calories, however, some consumers say using all Splenda results in an unpleasant after taste and unappealing texture. Using all sugar is not an acceptable option for WLS patients for reasons already noted.

Knowledge, Moderation, Occasion
Ultimately, the key to including sweets in the WLS lifestyle is knowledge, moderation and occasion.

  • Know what is in the sweet product you are eating. Find sweets recipes that contain other nutritionally beneficial ingredients while eliminating or at least decreasing the sugar and fat.
  • Moderation: a small serving is fine. Scientific studies indicate a craving can be satiated with a modest portion eaten slowly and savored. I have found my occasional chocolate craving can be satiated with one Andes’ thin mint – think about it! One mint – 26 calories and 2.6 grams of sugar, 1.6 grams of fat.
  • Plan your occasions when you know you will indulge and then indulge wisely. Know the kind of sweetener used in your treat, know your serving size and know you will stop when that serving is consumed. At first it isn’t easy but with diligence planned occasional treats can be included in your WLS lifestyle.
  • Love your new diet:
    Finally, rather than focusing on all the beloved lost foods spend time enjoying and loving your new way of eating. Dr. Katz said, “Even though you were born to like sugar, if your diet shifts, step-by-step to one richer in nutrient-dense, calorie-dilute, natural foods, there will simply be less place for processed sugar in your diet.”