A well known ‘hazelnut spread’ contains the following ingredients:
Sugar (50%) and vegetable oils (mostly palm oil), followed by hazelnut, cocoa solids, and skimmed milk. In the United States, this spread contains soy products. This product is marketed as “hazelnut cream” in many countries. Under Italian law, it cannot be labeled as a chocolate cream, as it does not meet minimum cocoa solids concentration criteria. About half of the calories come from fat (11g in a 37g serving, or 99 kcal out of 200 kcal) and about 40% of the calories come from sugar (20g, 80 kcal).
OK, so you’re saying ‘so what’, right?
Well here’s the thing. Last night while watching the boob tube, there was a commercial on for this product. It showed a mother and her kids at breakfast, running around and trying to get out the door in time for school or work. It showed them eating this product on bread. Not a big deal.
Then the narrator of the commercial started to speak and said that this product was a great way to start the morning as it contained
…”two whole hazelnuts in every tablespoon, skimmed milk and cocoa powder”…
Did you notice anything missing, like the sugar?? Why didn’t they mention that? Because they know how bad the sugar is for you and they just thought they’d let that pass. Perhaps they thought you wouldn’t notice. Perhaps a lot of people won’t.
SUGAR IS THE ENEMY.
Now I’m no angel when it comes to sugar, but at least I have a pretty good idea of how much I’m eating. Usually my sugar intake consists of home baked goods that I’ve made myself or my daily square or two of dark chocolate. In checking the label on the chocolate, one square contains 3.2g of carbs, which I’m sure is mostly from the sugar. And considering I don’t eat home baked goods everyday, my daily sugar intake is pretty low. I don’t eat sugary cereals and I don’t drink soda of any kind. We cook from scratch every night and don’t have ready meals or processed foods.
I use artificial sweeteners, honey, fruit sugar or agave nectar, depending on what I’m eating or drinking. I try to stay away from the sugar because I know what it does to me if I have too much of it. I have hypoglycemia/low blood sugar and it’s not fun when I get an attack.
The problem is that sugar can be an addiction just like smoking, alcohol and drugs. It takes willpower to resist but sometimes resistance can be futile.
Usually it is easier to make dietary changes gradually, however sugar has the unique ability to inspire cravings which are refueled every time you give into them. The only way to break the cycle is to stop feeding the fire. Use this challenge as an opportunity to go cold turkey and break the addiction.
And stay away from that falsely advertised hazelnut spread. Perhaps they should really call it Sugar Spread with Hazelnuts…