My name is Ashley and I was a sugar addict!” Like BAD SUGAR ADDICT. Little Debbie Snacks and entire bags of candy on the reg!
I truly think decreasing sugar is the #1 change every person on this planet should and could make in their diet to drastically improve their health and today I am going to share four tips for managing your sugar intake.
Earlier this year I read a book called the Case Against Sugar. While I actually didn’t love it (it was a bit too historical for me), there were some amazing takeaways I wanted to share with you.
- Inventor of Coca-Cola had a morphine addiction and invented Coca-Cola to help wean him off of the harder drugs
- Sugar induces the same response in the region of the brain known as the reward center, the nucleus accumbens, as does cocaine, nicotine, heroin, alcohol
- Addict a rat over the course of months to intravenous blouses of cocaine and then offered a choice of a sweet solution or its daily cocaine fix and the rat will switch over to sweets within two days
- By 1980 the USDA estimates Americans were drinking over 7 1/2 gallons of fruit juice a year and by the late 1990s over 9 gallons, roughly equivalent to drinking an additional 8 pounds of sugar per year
- Researchers believe metabolic effects of consuming sugar or fructose can happen in as little as a week if animals are fed huge amounts, almost 70% of the calories in their diet. The effects may take several months if the animals are fed closer to what humans consume, around 20%. Stop feeding them sugar in either case and the fatty liver goes away and with it the insulin resistance
(Metabolic syndrome ties together a host of disorders such as obesity, hypertension, high triglycerides, low HDL cholesterol, heart disease, diabetes, inflammation – a basic disruption in regulatory systems throughout the body causing pathological consequences everywhere)
Let me continue by saying, “Do I still eat sugar, sure – but I have become very aware of how it makes me feel and what it does to my body. I listen to my body and if I find myself getting addicted because I have consumed too much of it, I wean it back out of my diet. To be really frank, I can’t consume much at all without getting a headache, which I am grateful for. Self regulation at its finest!
Onto those 4 tips I promised you!
Four Tips For Managing Sugar Intake
Crowd it out.
This is a concept I learned in my Health Coach training and it makes perfect sense. The more you can crowd your body with good foods, the more your body will not only crave the good but you will likely have little room left for those fun foods, as we call them in our home!
Balance your plate.
Make sure you are eating enough protein, fat and fiber with the sugar so it slows down digestion, release of the sugar and subsequent insulin spike, which will help with avoiding those highs and lows you feel. If you know you want dessert, make sure to have it with your meal or shortly after. (psst – this is why nuts and chocolate chips are a great sweet snack).
Eat the natural sweets.
All the fresh fruit.
Blend up fruit and make into an ice cream. This is my favorite machine to make homemade ice cream using just frozen fruit (and I am giving one away below!)
Or consider a smoothie (which is great because of the fiber and you can make it extra balanced by adding in some avocado good fats).
(Psst – download my free Smoothie Guide)
This is truly the best way to deal with sugar – knowledge is power! Save your sugar intake for the yummy sugar, not all those added unnecessary sugars in products.
If you are ready to detox your body from sugar, check out my tips here.