Our diets nowadays are simply loaded with sugar. More and more people are coming to realize the health implications of this – including obesity, heart disease, gum disease and diabetes. Nutritionists have discovered that when the body has been used to regular high levels of sugar consumption, then a withdrawal of this from the diet can have many of the same effects as withdrawal from drugs! Yes, it’s true – we really are becoming addicts to sugar so much so that we may undergo sugar withdrawal if we try to quit. Today we are going to help you cut down on your sugar intake and know how to deal with the withdrawal that can arise.
Sugar withdrawal is very real despite what some people think. There are reports of people having shooting headaches, feelings of sickness, aching limbs and fantasies about sweet sugary drinks.
An average American man consumes an astonishing 45 teaspoons of sugar every day. It isn’t uncommon for people to begin the day with a sugary cereal and then drink sodas all day long.
Corporations and advertisers have made us addicted to junk food. If you think its time to be free from sugar then read on.
How To Avoid Sugar Withdrawal
One way to avoid sugar withdrawal completely is to taper down your intake slowly a few weeks instead of stopping abruptly.
If you try to cut all the sugar out at once, you may find yourself failing within just a few days. You need to give your body time to adjust to the new, healthier diet.
- Try diluting sweet beverages. For example, you could put one sugar in your coffee instead of two, or mix lemonade with unsweetened seltzer.
- Quitting sugar abruptly may result in headaches, nausea and intense cravings.
Use Sugar Substitutes ( For A Little While)
Sugar substitutes and artificial sweeteners are a good strategy to use in the short term. If you find that your body is craving something sweet in the first few weeks, try using a sugar substitute. However, ultimately your body needs to become trained to eat less sweet food and so you shouldn’t use this as a permanent solution.
- Natural sugar substitutes such as Xylitol or Stevia are thought to be better than artificial ones like Aspartame.
- Some research suggests however that using these sweeteners may contribute to weight gain. You become desensitized to naturally sweet foods like fruit and vegetables.
When You Get Cravings – Fight Back With Exercise
Strong cravings for sugar may tempt you into driving to your local store and picking up a bar of chocolate. Instead, a better way to deal with the cravings during sugar withdrawal is to engage in physical activity.
Whenever you feel those cravings particularly strong, go for a short run, jog or walk. Lifting some weights also works. A good physical exercise will release endorphins in the body, which helps to regulate your mood.
To Beat Sugar Withdrawal – Get Rid Of All The Sugar In Your House
Getting rid of the rubbish sugary foods has a number of benefits.
- It removes any temptation, by putting a physical distance between you and sugary foods when you are at home.
- Throwing out the food is also making a commitment to yourself. You are breaking your ties to your old habit, and changing your ways.
- It forces you to look for a more healthy alternative when you are feeling hungry or thirsty.
Remember, quitting something isn’t all about having massive willpower. If you remove the temptation from your life, then you actually have a better chance of success.
When Dealing With Sugar Withdrawal – Drink Plenty Of Water
Actually the cravings you feel for sugary food can often be your body craving a liquid. Simply drinking a glass of water can be enough to get rid of your cravings.
People who have been addicted to high levels of sugar in their diet from childhood may have trouble distinguishing between a craving for sugar and thirst.
It’s recommended that you drink between 9 – 13 glasses of water a day during sugar withdrawal.
Get More Fruit In Your Life
Fruit is packed with healthy, natural and unrefined sugars. Of course, fruit also has loads of other beneficial components like minerals, vitamins, and anti-oxidants.
Try to eat fresh fruit as opposed to canned fruit which will often have sugar added.
Keeping a food journal can be a wonderful way of tracking what you are eating.
Keep a detailed journal of your diet, and try to update it every day. You should also note down your feelings and emotions as you go through sugar withdrawal. This will help you to process your journey with your new healthier diet.
Keep a daily note of your sleeping habits, your weight, and your energy levels. Soon you will gain insight and clarity into the effects that sugar has had on your life and your health.
- As well as writing about your problems, remember to keep a note of what feels good about cutting out sugar. Focusing on the positive aspects will provide you with further motivation.
- Keep sugar free recipes. This is a great place to keep a note of your new diet, and the experiments you are trying with meals and cooking.
- If you enjoy being online, consider starting a blog and sharing your experience. This can help others, as well as yourself and you can become an advocate for a reduced sugar or sugar-free diet.
Many of the symptoms of sugar withdrawal are eerily similar to what you might expect to hear from someone withdrawing from drugs. Sugar withdrawal is real and it is a challenge.
But don’t forget you are strong too – and stronger than the addiction.
If you have a setback, don’t beat yourself up about it. The best thing is to say you will do better from now on, instead of going on a binge eating spiral fueled by negative feelings.
Just remember to slowly reduce your intake and that way you will be able to avoid the worst symptoms of sugar withdrawal.