Sugar has become an overwhelming temptation that we feel powerless to resist. Can it be said that sugar is an addiction?
1. How much sugar are you consuming?
The average American eats about 1 pound of sugar every day. There are close to 600,000 processed food items in our environment and 80% of them contain added sugar. 90% of kids and 50% of adults in the U.S. drink soda once a day. One can of soda a day increases a kid’s chance of obesity by 60%.
Let’s take a Sugar Addiction Quiz: Write down True or False
I eat refined sugar every day
I can’t go a day without sugar
I have cravings for one or more of the following: Candy, Ice Cream, Alcohol, or Chocolate
I drink soda on a regular basis
I hide sweets in my house
I drink coffee, sweet rolls, bagels for breakfast
I can’t go an hour after exercising without eating
I can’t stop eating sweets after a bite or two
I need something sweet after a meal
I can’t go 3 hours without eating and not get grumpy, shaky, or fatigued
I usually always have any sweets in my house
If you answered 4 questions true you have a sugar addiction If you answered 1-3 questions true you may develop a sugar addiction later If you answered 0 questions true you don’t have a problem
2. How can Sugar Impact you Physically?
Cancer, as the sugar feeds the carcinogenic cells
Resistance to Insulin – Diabetes
Inflammation in the Diet, which can lead to serious health problems
Weight Gain and Obesity
Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease
Decrease in HDL and increase in LDL
The list goes on and on…
3. Effects on Blood Sugar
Sugar can enter quickly into the bloodstream and wreak havoc on the body causing really high blood sugars – causing excitability, nervous tension, and hyperactivity and then dropping it extremely low – causing fatigue, depression, weariness, and fluctuations.
4. Healthy Sugar Alternatives
Is best kept at a minimum
There are a lot of natural sweeteners
Look for naturally derived
Contain some nutrients and antioxidants
5. Examples of 5 Natural Sugars
6. Artificial Sweeteners
Trick your body into storing fat and raise your risk of diabetes
Food or beverages containing artificial sweeteners, such as diet soda promote weight gain
Sweeteners worsen insulin sensitivity
Sweeteners promote more serious health problems
Sweeteners promote obesity and disease by disrupting your intestinal microflora
7. Sugar Addiction
Detox from the drug-like foods and beverages you have been hooked on
Big Foods hire craving experts to make sure you become addicted
When we treat addicts for alcohol or cocaine we don’t say “practice moderation”
Reprogram your biology
Sugar is eight times more addictive than cocaine
Sugar foods, processed foods filled with sweetness, and refined carbohydrates, such as bread, pasta, and chips, all turn into sugar in your body and spike your blood sugar levels. Sugar lights up pleasure centers in your brain, just like cocaine and heroin do.
The primary culprit is an excessive intake of hidden sugar in the form of fructose, whether natural fructose such as agave syrup, 100 percent fruit juice, or in the form of high fructose corn syrup (which is the main ingredient in countless beverages and processed pre-packaged foods.
It is extremely easy to consume high amounts of fructose on a daily basis, especially if most of your foods are processed in any way or you drink sodas or other sweetened beverages.
Reduce or eliminate caffeine
Eat Sweet Vegetables and Fruit
Avoid chemicalized, artificial sweeteners and foods with added sugar
Get physically active
Get more sleep, rest, and relaxation
Evaluate the amount of animal food you eat
Eliminate fat-free or low-fat packaged snack food
Experiment with spices
Slow Down and find sweetness in non-food ways
Tips for Quitting Sugar
Get it out of your house
Look for Hidden Culprits
Give it 30 days
Drink a lot of water
Skip the Replacements
Involve your family
Start a challenge or do a vision board
It is a process
Be gentle with yourself
Stay Well Fed
There are a lot of myths about sugar-related to how it affects your health and wellbeing. 2B Well Integrative Nutrition Counselor, Brandy Hickman, CHHC, RYT, will dispel the rumors and provide accurate, relevant information that you can put to use immediately and begin to feel better.
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