Sugar Addiction

Have you given up sugar, only to embrace it again – like a long lost lover you missed dearly?

And then made up for lost time by eating even more than before?

Don’t feel bad, this scenario is very common.

Here is where you may want to find out where you stand by taking the Are You a Sugar Addict? - Quiz Are you wondering what my story is?

Well, I didn’t think I was a addicted to sweets because I wasn’t really overweight (maybe by 10 pounds or so), I ate oatmeal for breakfast, and I used Splenda instead of the real thing. When I went to nutrition school, I realized I was an addict, gave up the processed sweets (and artificial sweeteners) and lost 10 pounds!

I also felt great and had loads more energy.

It was an amazing experience and I love to share what I learned to help clients permanently change their relationship with the sweet stuff.

How much are we eating?

It’s around 170 pounds per person per year!!

That is just crazy.

Why are we eating so much? Our tongues are desensitized to it so manufacturers keep adding more and we keep eating more.

What happens when we eat sweets or highly processed carbs like pasta and bagels?

Our blood sugar spikes, then insulin comes in to bring it down and we get a crash. This rollercoaster ride leads to low energy which leads to cravings for more sweets which eventually leads to diabetes and other health issues.

Get off the rollercoaster!

Here is where I have to say: NOT ALL CARBS ARE BAD!

We need complex carbohydrates like brown rice, quinoa and oatmeal to give us long lasting energy without the spikes. Adding these complex carbs is key to overcoming this addiction.

What else helps?

Start with awareness – how much of the sweet stuff are you eating?

Really read lables (and check out the number of servings in the package) and add it up. You should be consuming 30 grams or less in the form of processed sugar in my opinion – and a Coke has about 54 grams!

By the way, this is equivalent to 14, yes 14 teaspoons of sugar. Can you imagine drinking a glass of water with all that sweetness mixed in? That’s what a soda is (and many other seemingly healthy drinks)! Yeuch!

What is the impact on your health? Just a few of the downsides:

Weight gain
Heart disease
Lowers the Immune System

Do you think artificial sweeteners are better?

I would rather have you eat the real thing than the fake stuff!

Let’s talk about the biggest one, Splenda, for a moment. It is sucrose plus 3 chlorine molecules (a chlorocarbon). Chlorocarbons like PCB are poison and in fact Splenda has more chemical similarity to DDT (a harmful insecticide) than sugar. Chlorocarbons are linked to cancer, liver and kidney damage, birth defects and immune system destruction.

On top of that, studies show artificial sweeteners may distort the body’s natural calorie counter, leading to more sweet cravings and more weight gain.

Throw it away now!

Sweets are often comfort food, what we turn to when we are stressed, depressed, bored or lonely.

So, the key to overcoming this addiction is delving into the emotional aspects of it. This is a very individual issue and is best addressed with counseling or nutritional coaching.

There are also some physical aspects: these Tips to Baninsh Sugar Cravings should help with the physical side of the addiction.

The key here is balance, if our food intake is balanced, with lots of whole grains, fruits, veggies and good protein, we find cravings disappear.

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