Which dishes are sugar-added “assassins”?People who control sugar and lose weight should be careful

Which dishes are sugar-added “assassins”?People who control sugar and lose weight should be careful


I wonder if you have noticed the recent trend – more and more sugar is added to food and beverages. Whether you go to a restaurant or a cafeteria to eat, the same trend follows. A chef also told me that recently his colleagues are more and more fond of putting sugar in their dishes. Because no matter what the cuisine is, it seems that as long as you add a little sugar to salty dishes, the taste will be more mellow and diners will welcome it more.

While sugar-reduced and sugar-free beverages, snacks, and pastries are popular, a large amount of sugar is added to dishes and staple foods. This matter is worrying. Especially for those who often have banquets, order takeaways, and buy staple foods, eating a lot of sugar from catering products every day is really not a good thing.

Do you often eat these high-sugar dishes?

1. Most of the most popular dishes nowadays require a lot of sugar.

Sweet and sour pork ribs, sweet and sour pork loin, fish-flavored shredded pork, kung pao chicken, sweet and sour fish, cola chicken, braised pork, sweet and sour pork, lychee meat, West Lake vinegar fish, tomato scrambled egg, roasted eggplant, teriyaki chicken steak , Thai chicken meatballs, Orleans grilled wings… there is always something you like.

2. When grilling chicken or barbecue, sugar is often added when marinating.

Because after adding sugar, the baked food will have a stronger flavor and color, making it more attractive.

3. Sugar is also added when making kimchi and pickles.

Because after doing this, the same amount of salt will not seem so salty, and you will eat more.

4. The sweet sauce is very popular.

When dishes need to be eaten with sauce, sweet noodle sauce, tomato sauce, plum sauce, mayonnaise, Thousand Island dressing, honey mustard sauce, sand tea sauce, etc. are also a little sweet.

5. Japanese and Korean side dishes are mostly sweet.

Korean-style kimchi and seaweed, Japanese-style seaweed, and Japanese-Korean-style mashed potatoes are all sweet.

6. Staple foods are also conquered by sugar.

Certain brands of pastry are popular because of the sugar in them. Multigrain steamed buns are sweet, steamed buns are sweet, nut red bean rolls are sweet, and tortillas are also sweet. The faint sweetness in particular makes people relax their vigilance and think that it is just a healthy staple food, without realizing that it is actually very close to sweets.

 How much sugar do we accidentally eat every day?

5% sugar does not provide a satisfying sweetness, while 8% sugar is popular and considered palatable. As for foods such as biscuits and snacks, if you want people to eat them with normal sweetness, you have to add 15%-20% sugar.

There is sugar in soy sauce and cooking wine, but if you add one spoon of cooking wine and two spoons of soy sauce, the total amount of sugar is still very limited, so there is no need to be afraid. The chef’s tablespoon of extra sugar is the scariest thing. If you eat 300 grams of sugar-added vegetables every day, plus 200 grams of lightly sweetened staple foods (cooked weight) with added sugar, you can easily eat at least 30 grams of sugar.

Both the Dietary Guidelines for Chinese Residents and the World Health Organization suggest that it is best to control added sugar within 25 grams a day, and no more than 50 grams at most. Now that there are dishes with added sugar, the 25g limit has been exceeded. Under this premise, we must be more careful about drinks, and it is best not to pair them with drinks or sweets. 100 grams of yogurt is 8 grams of sugar. Add in a piece of bread and a serving of ice cream, and the 50-gram limit will be exceeded.

What are the disadvantages of adding sugar to dishes in large quantities?

1. The introduction of added sugar increases the burden of blood sugar control.

When people with diabetes eat out, their blood sugar will rise sharply even if they don’t eat staple food. On the one hand, there are a small amount of starchy ingredients such as potatoes and taro in the dish, plus added sugar, which adds up to dozens of grams of carbohydrates; on the other hand, banquets are usually “marathon” meals, and after the meal If you are unable to stand up and move around in time, and you sit for two or three hours at a meal, without exercise, your blood sugar will skyrocket and remain high.

2. It increases the calories of food but does not increase the amount of vitamins and minerals.

This results in a reduction in the nutrient density of the food. Many people are afraid of adding sugar when drinking yogurt, but rarely pay attention to how much sugar is added when eating vegetables.

3. Increase salt intake.

After adding sugar, people’s ability to perceive salty taste will decrease. Therefore, those sweet and savory dishes will have higher salt content than those without added sugar. After eating something with “a lot of sugar + a lot of salt”, you will be more likely to feel thirsty after a meal. MSG cannot be blamed for this.

4. It will promote the Maillard reaction and increase pro-inflammatory substances.

The reactants of the Maillard reaction are amino groups brought by protein amino acids, plus carbonyl groups brought by sugars (or carbonyl groups brought by fat oxidation products). After high-protein foods are pickled with sugar, the carbonyl reactants increase, which promotes the Maillard reaction. While producing a thicker brown color and more aroma, more acrylamide and AGEs (advanced glycation end products) are produced. ), which are both pro-inflammatory ingredients.

5. If the taste of the dishes is too strong, it will be too “easy to eat”.

Such dishes are most delicious when paired with white rice and steamed buns, so we will unknowingly increase our total calorie intake.

6. Reduce the diners’ ability to perceive natural flavors and make the taste heavier.

In fact, fresh vegetables contain 2%-5% sugar. Even if no sugar is added, they are still lightly sweet. But now most people’s tongues have been dulled by a large amount of sugar and salt, and they can no longer taste the natural flavor.

 Is it okay to use sugar alcohols and other sweeteners instead of sugar in cooking?

Doing so doesn’t solve the problem.

On the one hand, cooking with sugar alcohols cannot add flavor or color because sugar alcohols cannot undergo the Maillard reaction.

On the other hand, eating too much sugar alcohol may not necessarily be good. Previous studies have shown that eating too much erythritol can strongly increase the risk of blood clots. Too much sugar alcohol can also promote diarrhea and disrupt the balance of intestinal flora. The World Health Organization has issued a report saying that sweeteners do not help prevent obesity and chronic disease. Don’t expect any magic solution to your harmful sweet cravings.

Therefore, when ordering dishes in the future, you should ask for less or no sugar, just like you ask for less salt and less oil. Let’s work together to change our sweet taste and put an end to the trend of increasingly sweet dishes!

Text/Fan Zhihong (Director of the Chinese Nutrition Society, chief scientific communication expert employed by the China Association for Science and Technology)


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