Are you addicted to sugar? Cravings are a sign that you’re out of balance.
Refined sugar is an anti-nutrient, which means it takes more to process the sugar than it can give back in the form of nutrients in the body. It also reduces the efficacy of your immune system. Did you that only 4g of sugar (that is 1 tsp) can suppress your white blood cell count (those are the bacteria fighting soldiers) for up to 5 hours? It now makes sense why we seem to get sick more often during or after the holidays with all the added decadence that may be consumed.
You probably already know that sugar isn't great for you and you are not really looking for more reasons to give up sugar, but rather simple ways to help you kick the habit. Check out these 10 tips to truly help you balance your blood sugar, reduce inflammation, restore gut health, and finally feel in control with sugar.
Tip #1 - “Crowd Out”
Going cold turkey from all sweets is likely to backfire. All or nothing mentality is a great way to push yourself into feelings of failure and disappointment should you slip. Instead, start to crow out the refined carbohydrates with healthier versions. Here is a great alternative to the typical store bought chocolate muffin that is a fan favorite in my house!
Tip #2 - Avoid artificial sweeteners
Saccharin, aspartame, acesulfame potassium, sucralose, and neotame are amongst the top artificial sweetness used in packaged processed food today. They increase your appetite and your sugar cravings. Can decrease the good bacteria in your gut Artificial sweeteners also inhibit fat metabolism. Switch to real low-glycemic sweeteners like coconut sugar, dates, stevia, and organic maple syrup.
Tip #3 - Don’t buy junk food/ keep it out of your home
This may seem too easy because it is. If it isn't in the house then you won't eat it! Next time you go to the grocery store, turn off auto-pilot and be more intentional with what you are putting in your cart. Will it give you energy or steal it?
Tip #4 - Read labels
Perfect segue into this next tip! Yes, grams of sugar is important, but what is even more important is the type of sugar you are consuming. Look at the ingredients on every package you buy and start to notice where the sugar is sneaking in. You will be appalled with how much your daily intake of sugar can add up!
Tip #5 - Eat more fruit and sweet veggies
Try reaching for these instead; they’ll actually quell your cravings! Frozen berries and cherries are great for munching. Sliced apples or pears with an almond butter smear or dipping sauce.
Tip #6 - Eat good fats (like raw nuts and coconut oil)
Good fats will help to modulate cravings and stabilize blood sugar which is what you want to maintain a healthy gut, happy hormones, and all day energy.
Tip #7 - Remember that we’re not talking calories. . .
This may sound crude, but. . . A little bit of crack is still crack! When you’re kicking the sugar habit rely on healthy alternatives mentioned above, not modified amounts of the same old stuff. The body will quickly remember old habits. Small amounts will trigger return cravings and binges.
Tip #8 - Move your body (exercise)
Movement helps the body to metabolize glucose and help your cells be more receptive to that hormone insulin. It also help regulate sleep which in turn helps regulate cravings! Yay! Get up and go!
If you need support to kick the habit, reach out and get it!
It makes sense that we have the desire to eat sweets. Of the five different taste buds in our mouth, we have more “sweet” buds than any of the others. So be sure not to deny yourself some sweetness! Work with the above tips to ease those cravings, create new healthy supportive habits and you will be well on your way to better health.