Breaking Sugar Addiction

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Breaking sugar addiction, to the point where you have no cravings, is completely possible.

The key is to substitute better foods. It's not realistic to just drop the sugary foods and somehow survive on whatever else you were eating. You must replace the sugary foods with other, better foods.



Nutritious whole foods do two things: they help break the addiction, and they won't prolong or increase the addiction. They are generally not high-calorie, so you'll have room for quite a lot of nutritious food. (Sugary foods have high calories and no nutrients.)

After refined sugar, the foods that most prolong sugar addiction are processed foods made from grains. They lack fiber that would modulate the effects of sugar. They almost always have sugar (under its own or another name) listed as an ingredient on the label. Junk food in particular makes sugar addiction worse.


How To Substitute Better Foods

1. Avoid sugary foods.

2. Don't replace sugary foods with processed foods made with white flour or with other junk foods.

3. Replace sugary foods with healthy whole foods.

4. Always have alternate healthy foods available to eat:

  • Stock up at home.
  • Prepare ahead of time if necessary.
  • Carry them with you.

5. Don't keep sugary foods around the house.

6. Make a commitment to not spend money on foods that make you feel sick.


Which Foods Are Most Helpful In Breaking Sugar Addiction?

Fruit

It's easy--and extremely healthy—to simply substitute fruit whenever you otherwise would eat a sugary food.

The fruit might not seem to appeal as much--if it did, I wouldn't have been eating sugary foods in the first place!. But have the fruit on hand anyway, while at the same time doing whatever it takes to not have sugary food on hand. An otherwise unconquerable sugar craving will make an apple or a banana look pretty good.

When do you normally eat candy or pastries? For instance, mid-afternoon at work? Make sure you always have fruit with you. If you are used to dessert at the end of a meal, eat fruit instead.

Unlike the refined sugar in desserts, fruit contains vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber. The nutrients and fiber enable the body to properly metabolize fruit's natural sugar. 

  • An apple will give you a longer-lasting and more fundamental energy boost than sugary foods will. Apples contain natural fructose, a slow-release natural sugar.
  • A banana will substitute for a sugar rush without prompting a binge. Bananas contain both natural fructose and the fast-release natural sugar, natural glucose.
  • Watermelon is as sweet as any dessert.

Whole-Fruit Smoothies

A smoothie is fruit pureed in a blender, often with fruit juice, frozen yoghurt, ice cream, sorbet, milk, or soy milk. When breaking sugar addiction, however, it is counter-productive to drink smoothies with frozen yoghurt, ice cream, sorbet, or any added sweetener. Stick to fruit, ice, water, and plain yoghurt.

An ordinary blender can handle bananas and strawberries, but a Vita-Mix blender can grind virtually any whole fruit into "whole-fruit juice." Like eating a whole piece of fruit, the extra fiber and nutrition prevents the sugar reaction.

The delicious taste and texture from the whole fruit is indescribable! On a personal note, Vita-Mix smoothies were the first foods that made a dent in my sugar cravings.

Dried Fruit

Dried fruit can be incredibly sweet, as sweet as any candy bar. Readily available dried fruit are dates, figs, prunes, and raisins. I recommend organic dried fruit, which has not been treated with sulfites (sulfites cause allergic reactions in some people) or grown with pesticides.

Dried fruit contains concentrated enzymes, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, along with concentrated natural sugars. Dried fruit is highly nutritious.

The natural sugars are useful for breaking sugar addiction to refined sugars. However, anyone with serious blood sugar problems, such as diabetes, should be cautious and consult a qualified medical professional before eating dried fruit.

I would not have been able to overcome sugar addiction without dried fruit. My personal favorite is the deglet noor date.

Fruit Juice

Juice without the pulp of the fruit (unlike whole-fruit juice made in a Vita-Mix or blender) is  highly concentrated natural sugar without any fiber. It would not be my first choice. But the first rule of breaking sugar addiction is to do what you need to do.

The best fruit juice would be fresh, homemade juice, freshly squeezed or juiced in a juicer.

If you buy bottled, canned, boxed, or frozen juice, be sure to buy 100% fruit juice. Read the ingredients list: it should not contain sugar, corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, aspartame or other artificial sweeteners, or the words "artificial flavors" or "natural flavors." Any of these substances can and will provoke sugar addiction. (See the page on how to choose a  healthy fruit juice.)

Natural food stores carry a better selection of 100% fruit juices than supermarkets do.

Superfoods

Superfoods supply concentrated vitamins and minerals, and correct the nutritional deficiencies that cause cravings.

I especially recommend wheatgrass juice for sugar cravings. When I discovered this juice, I was amazed to find that mixed with canned pineapple juice, my chocolate cravings were eliminated, even the temptation of the dish of chocolate candies displayed at work.

Complex Carbohydrates

Complex carbohydrates, which include whole grain foods and starchy vegetables, prevent sugar rushes and crashes. Vegetarian diets utilizing complex carbohydrates have been shown to normalize blood sugar in some studies.

Examples of complex carbohydrates:

  • Brown rice
  • Whole grain bread
  • Potatoes
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Carrots
  • Squash

Asian tradition emphasizes the sweet flavor of complex carbohydrates. This sweetness is evident once your taste buds adjust.

Unrefined Salt

Often when you crave sugar, it's because you're not getting enough of the right kind of salt.

Table salt available in supermarkets is refined salt, which is made in an industrial process. Refined salt disrupts the body's ability to process and handle fluids. Ultimately, the body draws on sugar stores in order to fight dehydration, which then disrupts sugar metabolism and causes sugar cravings.

In contrast, unrefined salt is the kind of salt necessary to the body's proper fluid balance. It is coarser than refined salt, but it can still be used in a shaker. It has a great taste. Redmond RealSalt and Celtic Sea Salt are widely available in natural food stores. Most natural food store salt is refined, no matter how it is labeled, so stick to these brands.

Healthy Fats

Without enough fat in the diet, the body craves energy from sugar. Healthy fats include butter, olive oil, flax seed oil, nuts, avocados, coconut oil, and fat from organic and grass-fed meat. Nuts are convenient to carry with you for energy lows and cravings.

The single most unhealthy fat is the synthetic "trans fat," the fat that has been outlawed in New York restaurants. It is believed that trans fats are the true culprit in atherosclerosis. Don't eat anything that contains "hydrogenated" or "partially hydrogenated" oils in its ingredient list. (These are often the same processed foods that contain refined sugar, white flour, or are otherwise junk food.)


Breaking Sugar Addiction Is Completely Possible

Breaking sugar addiction is completely possible when you add healthy foods into your diet. It is important to become so well-nourished that you no longer need a stimulant.

Healthy foods will stop the roller coaster; they are the key to breaking sugar addiction.

Continue on to read about sugar withdrawal--what it is and how to prevent it.





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