I’m going to give you strategies to avoid sugar and the cravings, but first I must make a few points about why you would want to do such a thing. Stay tuned for the next article on the dangers of artificial sweeteners.
7 Reasons to Give Up Sugar:
- Sugar is Not Food – It is empty calories with little nutritional value and actually causes your body to steal vitamins from other vital organs in attempt to process the sugar, leaving you undernourished.
- Sugar Makes You Fat – It is filled with calories that are stored in your fat tissues.
- Sugar Makes You Nervous – There is a clear link between excess sugar and disorders like anxiety, depression, and schizophrenia, because of extreme levels of insulin and adrenalin.
- Sugar Causes Diabetes, Cancer, Kidney and Heart Problems – Excess sugar can damage the pancreas’s ability to function properly.
- Sugar Kills Your Teeth – Sugar increases the bacteria in your mouth that erodes enamel. The biggest crime is that many popular toothpastes contain sugar which is not required to be put the on the label.
- Sugar Suppresses the Immune System – Sugar interferes with the body by overtaxing its defenses.
- Sugar Causes Wrinkles – A high-sugar diet damages collagen.
Tip: Read labels for hidden sugars & sugar aliases
Hidden sugars: tomato sauce, baked beans, packaged foods, chewing gum, mints, and lunch meats.
Sugar aliases: corn syrup, dextrin, dextrose, fructose, fruit juice concentrate, high-fructose corn syrup, galactose, glucose, honey, hydrogenated starch, invert sugar maltose, lactose, mannitol, maple syrup, molasses, polyols, sorghum, sucrose, sorbitol, and xylitol.
How to Get Off Sugar
It takes about 7 days to get the addiction out of your system. This does not mean the cravings will disappear but the intense addiction needs that amount of time. Depending on your personality, you can wean yourself off sugar or go cold-turkey. Know yourself and pick the way that works best for you.
Tips on How Wean Yourself:
- Eat fresh fruit to wean off slowly– Although they are filled with natural sugar, they are a healthier choice as fruit is filled with vitamins, minerals and fiber. It is okay at first to eat some of them while weaning.
- Increase Healthy Fat consumption. Eating a good source of healthy fat will ensure that you are satiated and full so you won’t get ravenously hungry and grab the fastest energy source around. (Think Avocados, walnuts, and coconut)
- Try Stevia – A natural sugar alternative that actually nourishes the pancreas and has no calories. Stevia is an herbal extract from the Stevia Rebaudiana leaf that has been shown to regulate blood sugar and blood pressure.
- Don’t skip meals – When you miss regular meals; you create a starving situation in your body and you will eat anything to bring your blood sugar level back to normal. Make sure every meal has plenty of protein!
- Instead of sugary drinks like soda, fruit juice or sweet tea – Make an herbal tea with stevia. If you need that carbonated zing, add sparkling mineral water. When at a party or at the bar, drink soda water with lime or lemon.
- No sweets in your cupboards or fridge – It is too tempting to have them available.
- When craving strikes, go for a walk – Athletes’ cravings for sweet foods declines after exercise; they prefer salty foods.