The increase in demand for healthy snacks is not only about which ingredients are in a snack; it is also about the ingredients that aren’t there. According to Mintel, a global market research firm, 84 percent of consumers want to reduce the amount of natural sugar and artificial sweetener in their diets. Participants indicated that weight management and future health concerns were the top reasons to cut sugar. In fact, 31 percent of participants agreed that removing sugar from their diet causes more weight loss than cutting out fat. Millennials or 18 to 34 year olds had additional concerns about sugar and its negative impact on dental health and the appearance of their skin.
Decreasing the amount of sugar consumed has many more positive effects on a Chicago individual’s health than the few previously mentioned. Some additional health benefits of eating less sugar are
- lower blood pressure and bad cholesterol (LDL) levels,
- decrease risk of fatty liver disease, diabetes, and heart attack,
- Lower chances of developing Alzheimer’s and dementia,
- improved cognitive function, memory, and responsiveness,
- increased energy levels.
Avoiding sugar isn’t always as easy as it sounds though. Sugar is frequently hidden in products that aren’t usually associated with sugar. It is also referred to by other names and found in many different forms including molasses, organic cane sugar, fruit juice concentrate, malt sugar, corn syrup, honey, syrup, and words ending in “ose” dextrose, lactose, maltose, fructose, glucose, and sucrose. The following suggestions are a few ways that can help Chicago employees and students choose healthy snacks and reduce sugar consumption:
- check the ingredient list for hidden sugar
- eat as close to natural as possible
- check the nutrition label to see how much sugar is actually in the product
- gradually lower your sugar intake
- eat more protein and healthy fats such as nuts, seeds, avocados, and olives
- drink naturally flavored seltzer water as an alternative to sugary beverages
The increase in demand for snacks and beverages with less sugar has led to new, easy-to-find, healthier choices including kombucha teas and drinking vinegars. Since Chicago employees are looking for a wide variety of flavors and sweetness levels, there are many new opportunities to offer healthy snacks and beverages at all sweetness levels in the office break room.
Consider offering all of your Chicago employees the chance to enjoy a healthy snack or beverage while at work. Whether enjoying a can of flavored carbonated water or a healthy snack from the vending machine, there is an option for everyone. For more information about adding healthy snacks and beverages to your office break room or updating your current vending machine options, call Mark Vend at (847) 291-9216.