National Diabetes Month: Top 5 ways to cut sugars


With an estimated 870,000 Michigan adults diagnosed diabetic (with another 2.7 million pre-diabetics), Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer proclaimed November 2019 as Diabetes Awareness Month to shed light on the disease and the preventive steps everyone can take to limit their risk of developing the condition.

The seventh leading cause of death in the United States and Michigan, the risk for diabetes is increased by the excessive consumption of sugar, making cutting sugar intake an integral practice to cutting one’s risk for diabetes.

On top of lowering the risk for developing diabetes, cutting down on added sugar intake carries many additional health benefits.

Cutting sugar


Here are the top 5 most effective ways to cut sugar from your diet, supplied by the registered dietitians at McLaren Macomb Diabetes and Nutrition Counseling.

Cut back on added sugar
Nutrition labels list the amount of added sugar per serving. When purchasing items from the grocery store, read the label for ‘Added Sugar’ and choose the item with less. The recommendation is to reduce added sugar consumption to less than 10 percent of total daily calories.

Swap out soda
While sodas may taste great, soft drinks are high in added sugar and offer almost no nutrition benefit. The next time thirst hits, reach for a water, iced tea or another drink that contains little to no sugar.

Substitute for fruits
Much like soda, a lot of snack foods are loaded with sugar (and usually processed with many preservatives). If you’re looking for an afternoon energy boost, fruits are a great, healthy source.

Try extracts…
If a recipe calls for sugar, look at substituting flavor extract into the dish. With a variety of flavors to fit countless recipes, a little bit of concentrated extract flavoring goes a long way.

…or replace sweeteners entirely
If you don’t want to replace sugar with an extract, look in the kitchen cupboard and see if another spice might fit the dish. Nutmeg, cinnamon, ginger, allspice and others are flavorful and can heighten many dishes.

Risks of excessive sugar


More than diabetes, excessive sugar consumption is linked to a number of health risks.
  • Obesity
  • Metabolic syndrome
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Chronic inflammation
  • Fatty liver disease

Learn more about how nutritional counseling can aid in your good health.

Call McLaren Macomb Diabetes and Nutrition Counseling at (586) 493-8500.

Make an appointment with a McLaren Macomb primary care physician.

Schedule an appointment online.

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