ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How to go sugar free: Our new family challenge

Updated on March 5, 2015

Do Sugar Free Snacks Exist?

It all started with a realization

Eating sugary and sweet treats have always been a a bit of a release for me. Lately I've been finding that I've been projecting my bad habits onto my kids. Treats are often used in our home as a reward or as an incentive. The power that refined sugar has on us is strong-I've found that lately, our 3 year old has been experiencing a lot of manic behaviour. These meltdowns, we've come to realize, were all a part of his relationship with sugar (or treats). Unhealthy snacking between meals has become a problem for us and for our child. Most of the snacks that we have been consuming are full of sugar and are highly processed. We've experienced sugar induced behaviour as well (my husband and I), just showing up in different ways. Lately I've been feeling more tired lately (could be the sun, but I think it relates directly to my sugar intake). Anyway, because of my son's behaviour as of late, and his picky eating habits, we're hoping to stop the madness by taking out ALL refined sugars from his and our diet and we're learning how to go sugar free.

Another realization I had was that we (my husband and I)consumed a lot of our treats after 9 pm, once the kids were all asleep. Not only should we NOT be eating after 9 pm, we should not be loading our bodies up with refined sugar at night, when we can't even burn off the calories. Sugar free snacks will be essential for us in the next while.

How to Go Sugar Free: Where to Begin

We began our journey of going sugar free by simply removing all items from our cupboards and fridge that contained refined sugar. One exception we made was to keep bread around for our 3 year old, a picky eater, who basically lives on bread. Which brings up a potential challenge for kids-what food items can be easily removed and which food items need to stay, for the time being? You can't just start 100% from scratch when it comes to changing your kids' diets.

Next, we began to research sugar free foods and sugar free recipes and ideas and started our first healthy grocery list. It's amazing how there is refined sugar in almost EVERYTHING! Pasta sauce, bread, canned soups, salad dressings, just to name a few. I guess we'll be taking out processed foods altogether and making a lot of things from scratch. My first trip to the store after coming up with a make-shift plan was the first one in months that didn't include buying a ton of sugary treats. And no ice cream either.

On the sugar free food list so far:

  • Rice (we've discovered rice bowls and rice wraps)
  • Rice wraps
  • Seaweed snacks
  • Barley
  • Steel cut oats
  • Cheese
  • Peanut butter (sugar free and all natural)
  • Sugar free jam
  • Plain yogert
  • Coconut milk (for cooking)
  • Meats (chicken, beef, sausage)
  • Fish (salmon, white fish, shrimp or prawns)
  • Smoothies
  • Apples
  • Bananas
  • Grapes
  • Melon
  • Bananas
  • Peaches (fresh from the tree in the summer)
  • Cut up veggies with humous (I keep a constant supply in the fridge for snacking)
  • Romane lettuce (I use these for wraps-great bread substitute!)
  • Peppers
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Celery sticks (we put PB and raisins on top)
  • Cucumber (with tzikki)
  • Sweet potatoes (you can make great homous dip with sweet potatoes!)
  • Homemade, sugar free muffins
  • Homemade pizza
  • Homemade sugar-free popsicles (current favourite is coconut banana pineapple)
  • Various nuts and seeds
  • Sparkling water (we make our own with our soda stream)

Sugar free diet plan


Sugar free diary

Week 1

Even after one full day of going sugar free, I'm still reaching around in the cupboards for something sweet and chocolatey, but no luck. Our cupboards are cleared out of anything sugary.

I love to bake and I'm not planning to give this up, going sugar free. So I'm learning about sugar (and white flour) substitutes. I made some delicious zuchinni banana muffins the other day (see recipe below). I used coconut flour, coconut oil (a good, healthy substitute for butter or other oils) and honey. The best part about the muffins is that my son loves them (he's pretty picky) and they have VEGETABLES in them! And no refined sugar to boot!

Week 2

Last night was my sisters bachelorette party and we did a pub crawl. I threw out the sugar free rules for one night because, guess what? Every single drink has sugar in it. Except water, but I wasn't planning on drinking just water on such a memorable occasion. After a night of drinking, I couldn't stop myself from buying candy at the convenience store that night. Sugar is really an addiction, once you start, it's really hard to stop.

Sugar free snacks: Healthy Zucchini muffins
Sugar free snacks: Healthy Zucchini muffins

Zucchini muffins (grain free, dairy-free)

  • 1/2 cup coconut flour
  • 1/4 cup Spelt or almond flour
  • 2 teaspoons Cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon Nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon Baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 4 Eggs
  • 1/3 cup Honey
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons Coconut oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon Apple cider vinegar
  • 1 banana, mashed
  • 1 cup unpeeled, shredded zucchini

Instructions-Zucchini muffins

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Fill muffin tin with liners or grease.
  2. Combine the dry ingredients. Pulse together eggs, honey, vanilla, and coconut oil until combined. Add the dry ingredients to the wet and pulse.
  3. Let mix sit for 3-5 minutes to allow the coconut flour to absorb. Add the apple cider vinegar, banana and zucchini and pulse.
  4. Scoop batter into muffin tins and bake for 20-25 min.

Sugar free snacks: Healthy, delicious muffins

3 stars from 47 ratings of Healthy zucchini muffins

Sugar free foods can be delicious


How to go sugar free

Step 1

Clear out everything with refined sugar

Step 2

Make a sugar free diet plan and make a grocery list of supplies, sugar free snacks and sugar substitutes.

Step 3

Talk to your family about how you want to see sugar free foods introduced to your family's eating plan. Even preschoolers will be able to understand and benefit from an explanation. It's important for everyone to know why you're doing this. The bottom line is to be more physically healthy as a family.

Step 4

Make a plan to slowly take the sugar out of your kids snacks and foods. If there's a food item that they love that IS sugary, see if there's a way to modify it. For example, flavored yogerts have a TON of sugar in them. If your kids love yogert, just feed them plain yogert with some honey or maple syrup mixed in with some fruits. Slowly cut back the amount of sweetener over time.

Step 5

Continue to find delicious and nutritious recipes that your family will enjoy.

Just because it's sugar free doesn't mean it's good for you

In being more diligent about reading food labels and ingredients, I've some to the conclusion that just because something is sugar-free, doesn't mean it's healthy. Some products are low in sugar or even gluten free but the sodium levels are sky high! And let's be logical people, just because french fries or potato chips don't have sugar in them doesn't mean they should be on the sugar free food list.

© 2013 healthygurl


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)