Retrain Your Taste Buds
You don’t need sugar as much as you think you do. In fact, you can train your taste buds to enjoy things that aren’t as sweet. Try cutting out one sweet food from your diet each week. For example, pass on dessert after dinner. Start putting less sugar in your coffee or cereal. Over time, you will lose your need for that sugar taste.
Sugar Addiction And Anxiety
Anxiety and sugar craving have a direct relationship. Eating disorders like binge eating or anorexia occur for underlying reasons. Often times, the person suffering from such disorders is struggling for psychological and emotional reasons. Stress eating is common example of the relationship between eating disorders and anxiety, and sugar consumption is commonly associated with stress eating.
Anxiety causes the stress hormone cortisol to be released in the body, which can suppress appetite in some. On the other hand, the stress may encourage people who already like sugar into more cravings. When sugar addiction co-occurs with eating to soothe anxiety, the end result is typically weight gain. Despite sugar initially boosting serotonin levels in the brain, sugar can worsen anxiety as sugar lows create feelings of fatigue and depression.
Keep Your Meals Diverse
Make sure you incorporate all food groups when you prepare a meal. According to Nutrition Stripped founder, McKel Hill, MS, RDN, LDN, people don’t realize they’re what they’re missing in their meals and it could be detrimental. “I’ve found in my practice that often people crave sugar because of generally imbalanced diet as a whole,” she says. “At mealtimes, they might be missing out on enough fiber to keep them physically full or can be lacking enough protein to keep them satiated, or enough healthy fats. All the macronutrients work together to keep our blood sugars stabilized and keep us satiated so we need them all.”
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Sugar Reset: Your 1 Month Plan To Get Off Sugar
Is sugar just a sweetener, or an addictive substance on par with a drug? Depending on which experts you ask, the answer may surprise you. While we are primed to want the sweet taste of energy-rich simple carbohydrates, eating too much can not only give us uncontrollable cravings for more, it can set us up for a lifetime of chronic health issues.
Address Past Or Current Stressors That Might Be Causing Dependency
At least one study showed that sugar dependency and cravings are not necessarily about the sugar itself, but may be caused by environmental stressors and situations.
One way to manage sugar cravings is to make it a point to be present with yourself and tune into your patterns. Do you always reach for sugar after a stressful day? Do you experience a craving after you encounter a trigger for a past trauma? Awareness of when and why cravings occur is the first step in freeing yourself from them.
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Joyful Eating Nourished Life
Joyful Eating, Nourished Life is a 6 week virtual wellness program that teaches you how to get healthy without deprivation, calorie counting, or stress about food or exercise. It was created by three registered dietitians who specialize in intuitive and mindful eating – me, Anne Mauney and Alex Caspero. Our next group is starting October 10th, so for more information and to sign up.
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You Are Not Eating Enough
Whether you are cutting carbs to drastic levels or just not eating enough, being too restrictive on your diet may be what’s driving you to eat more sugar.
This is purely survival mechanisms at work. Under-eating can signal a request for more calorie dense foods that will supply additional energy and quick energy in order for you to support your daily needs . Since sugar is one of the fastest sources of glucose you can get, it would make sense that you crave it when calories are sparse.
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Embrace A Gratitude Mindset
Its very difficult to replace a bad habit with a healthier lifestyle choice if we dont enjoy it. You can retrain your palate to enjoy healthier foods you may not have liked in the past. Get excited about feeling better and taking better care of yourself!
I find meditation to be a useful tool in changing subconscious thought patterns and breaking unwanted habits.
At the height of my unhealthy relationship with food, I thought of food in a negative way. I was so obsessed with it, that I would not even eat a banana, because it had too many carbs and too much sugar.
When I changed my perspective to understanding that food is good, beautiful, nourishing, strengthening, things changed for the better. While I no longer crave or even really enjoy sugary foods, I feel no guilt about eating a few bites of cake on a birthday, or even a double scoop of gelato on vacation. I dont believe in having any foods off-limits as we often want the things we cant have. Its the forbidden fruit syndrome.
I started to think like an athlete. Rather than dieting and exercising, I started training and eating. Can you feel the difference? The former is restrictive, while the latter empowering.
Think, know, and feel this: I feel best when I nourish my body and mind with whole foods. Sugar and processed foods make me feel sick, and Im tired of feeling sick.
Sugar Addiction And Binge Eating
A particularly worrisome aspect of sugar addiction is binge eating. Binge eating is eating too much and too rapidly followed by feelings of guilt, shame, and disgust. This can include a focus on sweets for the same mood-regulating and self-medicating effects of binge eating non-sugary foods. It is critical to remember that food, especially sugar, is a short-term fix for emotional conditions. If you or someone you love is struggling with depression and using food as a crutch, consider therapy or rehab.
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What Step To Take:
If you keep on craving candy, and think you maybe properly addicted , check out my essential steps to help you crush that sugar craving once and for all and find out what causes sugar cravings on my other blog post: When You Should Stop Eating Sugar + How To Do It.
When You Should Stop Eating Sugar + How To Do It
With more and more evidence mounting up on the negative impacts it can have on our health, a new question has emerged: should I quit eating sugar? In this post, I go in depth on how much sugar you actually can eat , and how exactly you can reduce the amount of sugar in your life without feeling deprived.
Identify Your Trigger Foods
Not all of us struggle with the same food triggers. The foods with which some of us completely lose control, others do just fine. In fact, your genes play a part in determining the degree of sugar addiction. Although a DNA test can help you determine if youre more prone to getting a sugar addiction, you can also simply pay attention to your eating habits.
The first step to break your sugar addiction is to identify which foods, specifically, you struggle with. You might find that a food journal comes in handy, here. Write down what you eat, how much of it you eat, and if you have trouble stopping. This doesnt have to be some detailed account of foods and calories, as it might simply be a record of what you eat and why.
You might write down how you felt before, during, and after eating different foods. In your journal or food diary, you could also write about any occasions of binge-eating, where you ate one of something, and just couldnt stop.
Get a crystal-clear picture of which foods or types of foods are causing you the most trouble. Reflect on the situations, times, places, thoughts, and feelings that are often present when your cravings kick in.
Often, we turn to food for distraction, coping, entertainment, stress relief or comfort. Be honest with yourself and work to cultivate a sense of self-awareness.
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The Pros And Cons Of Going Cold Turkey
A cold-turkey approach is the quickest way to quit the sugar habit, but it may not be the easiest. If youve built up a dependence, youll probably have some withdrawal symptoms, and that can make for a rough couple of weeks.Strong cravings are the most common symptom. You might also get headaches or feel fatigued and irritable.
The upside? Most peoples cravings subside within a few weeks. If you can ride out the withdrawals, quitting cold turkey is the fastest and most efficient way to get the sweet stuff out of your system.
The downside? Sticking to the plan is essential a single dessert can undo all your sugar-free progress, and youll have to start over from day one.
How To Break The Sugar Habit
Our sugar-laden diet is literally killing us. That’s the conclusion of a study reported at the annual meeting of the American Heart Association in March 2013. The study authors attributed 180,000 annual deaths worldwide25,000 in the United States aloneto sugary beverages. Sodas and fruit drinks aren’t our only sources of sugar. The average American eats between 22 and 30 teaspoons of added sugar each day, according to the AHA.
“The harmful effects of sugar are primarily due to the weight gain from added sugar in the foods we eat and sugar-sweetened beverages,” says Dr. Michelle Hauser, certified chef and nutrition educator and clinical fellow in medicine at Harvard Medical School. “Most of the deaths are related to heart disease, cancer, and diabetes.”
How much sugar do we actually need? According to AHA guidelines, women shouldn’t get more than 100 of our daily calories from added sugar. In reality, “you don’t need any added sugar,” Dr. Hauser says.
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Our Uncontrollable Sweet Tooth Wasn’t Always Like This
Two hundred years ago, the average American ate two pounds of sugar per year — today, we’re up to 152 pounds per year. How did that much added sugar get into our diet in the first place?
Unfortunately, American sugar addiction has less than sweet roots. Back in olden times, sugarcane was a labor-intensive crop that had to be cut by hand and immediately harvested for juices. In 1795, a New Orleans farmer figured out how to granulate the first sugar crystals, and it became a product that could last longer than just a few days before spoiling. Sugar plantations appeared on both sides of the Mississippi River, and thus the proliferation of the sweet stuff became just another marker of the United States’ legacy of slave labor.
The factors that led to our state of sugar consumption are further entwined with American history. During the Prohibition of the 1920s and ’30s, people turned to soda to replace their nightcaps, and sugary drinks became a staple in the American diet. By the time Prohibition ended, we were too hooked on soda to let go.
When we added alcohol back into our drinks post Prohibition, we kept the soda and sugary juice too.
Long story short, sugar addiction has its roots in the foundation of the United States. Even though it’s hard to beat, that doesn’t mean we should stop trying.
How To Beat An Addiction To Sugar And Sweet Foods
Are you looking for effective ways to beat a sugar addiction? Here you will find a whole slew of nutrition-related resources for people who want to break free of an addiction to sugar and sweet foods.
A sugar addiction causes over-indulgence in sweets and other sugary treats which can lead to many health complications in the long term, including obesity, diabetes, tooth decay, heart disease, and certain types of cancer. In the short term, a high consumption of sugar may cause mood swings and make you feel tired or irritable. Some of the negative effects of sugar are linked to its effect on the hormone insulin and its high calorie count , while others are linked to the impact of sugar on vital nutrients. Refined sugar is void of vitamins and minerals, so your body will have to borrow these nutrients from healthy cells in order to be able to metabolize the sugary food. This will cause your body to deplete its stores of vitamins , minerals, and enzymes.
Yet, despite everything we know about the negative effects of sugar on health, the Western world seems to be addicted to sugar. We add sugar to our foods, and we indulge in store-bought foods that contain tons of added sugar. According to estimates, the average American consumes 125-160 pounds of sugar every year.
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How To Stop Sugar Cravings: 8 Tips To Use Right Now
If you’re craving sugar, here are some ways to tame those cravings.
But won’t eating more often mean overeating? Not if you follow Neville’s advice to break up your meals. For instance, have part of your breakfast — a slice of toast with peanut butter, perhaps — and save some yogurt for a mid-morning snack. “Break up lunch the same way to help avoid a mid-afternoon slump,” Neville says.
Stop Eating Sugar Tips: The Physical Aspect
Drink a lot of water: My first recommendation is that you start drinking a lot of water right after eating sugar and throughout the day. It seems that sugar dehydrates the body and that causes even more sugar cravings.
Drink as much water as possible, at least 10 but ideally 20 glasses a day. I know it may seem like a lot, but your health will improve almost instantly and your cravings will diminish. I also know it may seem overly simple, but its extremely efficient. Do this for 21 days and share the results with me here.
Balance your sugar levels naturally: I suffer from hypoglycemia. I believe its because I ate way too many sweets growing up.
I take cinnamon mixed with dehydrated wheat grass juice daily. It looks disgusting, but it tastes OK, and it seems to balance my sugar levels. I have also noticed that taking nigari water, which is a great source of magnesium chloride, seems to bring me peace of mind, help me sleep better, and balance my reaction to sugar.
I make the water by mixing 22g of Nigari in a liter of water, but sometimes I just add one quarter of a cappuccino spoon to a glass of water and drink. I must warn you. It tastes awful, but its the only form of magnesium I know that gives me instant calmness.
I usually take it at night, one glass, an hour before bedtime. You may have to find your own plants and supplements to help balance your blood sugar levels. These two are working for me.
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Why Detox From Sugar
While carbohydrates are an important part of the average persons diet, sugar isnt necessarily the healthiest way to get them. Sugar is known to set off a chain reaction that increases insulin levels and sets you up to crave more of it later, without providing the kind of satiety that foods high in protein, fat, and fiber do.
Sugar may also increase inflammation in the body, which can lead to health problems down the line . Eating a diet high in sugary foods can also promote pathogenic bacterial growth a serious no-no if you struggle with things like digestive issues, leaky gut, or urinary tract infections. Weaning yourself off of sugar can help limit your cravings for sweet things, stabilize insulin levels, and improve your overall health.
Why We Crave Sugar
If you crave sugary foods, you’re not alone. Studies estimate that up to 90% of the adult population may experience food cravings. These cravings are often for sugary foods.
Scientists have long believed that cravings for carbohydrates and other sugary foods are driven by a desire to improve mood due to the fact that consuming sweet treats increases serotonin levels in your brain.
Serotonin, also known as a feel-good hormone, is a brain neurotransmitter that boosts your sense of well-being.
Although serotonin may be the cause of your food cravings, there are a variety of other potential causes that can also play a factor:
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Sugar Addiction And Emotional Eating
People may find sugars ability to provide instant energy, combined with the good taste of sugary foods, enticing. Sugar provides some with a quick fix during a long and stressful day. People who are enduring breakups or other emotionally stressful situations often turn to chocolate or pints of ice cream to comfort themselves during the difficult time. However, those who turn to sugar to deal with emotional issues are more likely to become addicted. Other indications of sugar addiction for emotional relief are weight gain and difficulty focusing on daily responsibilities. These side effects can damage self-esteem, cause feelings of helplessness, and lower self-worth this in turn leads to more sugar consumption and a more severe addiction.
How Long Should You Detox From Sugar
This will depend on your personal goals. Just need a reset after too much indulgence? 5 days is fine.
However, if like mine, your relationship with sugar has become a habit or physical addiction, 30 days is a good start. Many people find that it takes about a month to break a habit, however, other research suggests it may take much longer. Furthermore, to break a habit, one must replace it with another behavior.
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