How To Break Addiction To Sugar
I've already written about sugar in my post on How to stock your pantry to regain health. Now we are going to dive deeper into why so many people crave sugar and I will also share some simple solutions on how to break this dependency. Although kicking addiction is never easy, when you finish reading this post, you will have the motivation and tools to say farewell to this most addictive compound in our everyday life.
As I mentioned earlier, nowadays, sugar is in everything. Since our childhood, we were getting loads of sugar. Even breast milk is slightly sweet. We got sweets when we behaved, we were offered candy and cakes for birthday, lollipops on spring fairs. Now, I'm not talking about honey, maple syrup or fruit, I'm talking about highly processed sugar that has many names. Below, you can find ingredients on labels that really spell 'S-U-G-A-R'. Put food products and supplements with these ingredients back on the grocery shelf:
Agave, Agave nectar, cane sugar, caramel, corn syrup, dextrin, dextrose, high-fructose corn syrup, invert sugar, malt syrup, maltodextrin, brown sugar, caramel, refined sugar, sucrose. In France 'sirop de glucose de ble' (wheat glucose syrup) is used in almost every processed food. You will also find sugar in food flavourings (e.g.in flavoured yoghurt), in baby formula or in salty foods such as pasta sauce. Don't forget that refined carbohydrates (bread, pasta, white rice, muffins, pancakes, biscuits) and, of course, junk foods literally translate: 'sugar'.
There is nothing wrong with loving sweet things. That’s how we evolved. Hunter-gatherers collected wild honey and it was their biggest reward. Only, we have come way too far. We don’t have to climb trees anymore to get the sweat treat. We just have to go and buy it. And it’s cheap! When you eat refined sugar, not only you get zero nutrition from it, moreover, as it is highly addictive, your body craves for more as it is never satisfied. As we now know, sugar also feeds cancer cells and plethora of other diseases (metabolic syndrome, arthritis, Alzheimer's, type 2 diabetes, obesity, etc.). Scientists now call Alzheimer's disease “Type 3 diabetes.” Robert Lustig, a leading U.S. obesity expert believes sugar is such an addictive toxin that it should be regulated in the same way as cigarettes.
Sugar also causes brain fog, it is the reason why you can't button those tight fitting jeans and believe it or not, makes your skin saggy and wrinkly (ouch!). More on that in this article.
I hope you understand from the above, that added sugar has no place in your diet. If you have decided to break your addiction, read ahead.
What you can do to stop sugar cravings
Many people who crave sugar have some underlying health issue such as yeast/candida overgrowth, failing adrenal glands or even too much ‘bad’ bacteria in the gut. The solution is very simple. Instead of sugar, you need to get more fiber, more protein and more healthy fat and consume sour foods. In my own experience, the easiest way to kick the addiction is to go 'cold turkey' and do a 'sugar detox' when you stop eating all sugar (including sugar alternatives) for 20 days. The molecular structure of refined sugar is almost identical to cocaine, so you can have withdrawal symptoms such as digestive upset and headache. Use cinnamon in your meals. Cinnamon has been shown in research to help to reduce sugar cravings by controlling blood glucose levels. This minimizes insulin spikes after meals that lead to more hunger and consuming even more sugar. Also, chromium is effective against sugar cravings. After 20 days of 'sugar detox', you can add 'healthy' alternatives such as coconut sugar, stevia or complex carbohydrates such as brown rice or quinoa.
Good luck and let me know how did you manage to break your addiction to sugar on my Facebook page!