Sugar is one of America’s favorite pastimes. It’s an addiction that most people don’t even realize they have. The average person consumes over 150 pounds of sugar every day. That’s a daily average of 22 teaspoons. For teens, it’s even worse as the average is 34 teaspoons each day.
What’s so bad about sugar? It’s the greatest contributor to inflammation in the body and inflammation is the leading cause of most illnesses and ailments, including diabetes and cancer. Cancer is the leading cause of death in the USA and inflammation is the primary reason that people get cancer.
While completely eliminating sugar from your diet isn’t necessary, controlling insulin levels is the key to reducing inflammation. Insulin levels stay elevated when sugar is repeatedly consumed or when excess calories become routine, as protein and fat can also be converted to glucose.
Rather you’re considering a low-sugar lifestyle or a no-sugar lifestyle, you can reap the benefits of a far healthier body and a noticeable improvement in all of your health markers when your doctor performs your next screening.
Going from a high sugar diet to little or no sugar is a bit more of a challenge than most people realize. There’s a very good reason for this. When sugar is consumed, it stimulates the release of dopamine, which creates a natural “high” in the body. The same receptors in your brain are stimulated by heroin and morphine. A sugar addiction is therefore, a very physiological addiction not just a mental roadblock that you’re trying to overcome.
How Do You Quit Sugar?
A lot of studies have focused on the effects of sugar in the body and the subsequent addiction to sugar. The good news is that there are strategies that you can employ that will lessen the effects of dopamine release and ease your transition into a sugar-free lifestyle.
Start by taking a Chromium polynicotinate supplement. Chromium helps to regulate blood glucose and keep insulin spikes under control. Insulin spikes are followed by a drastic reduction in sugar and this is what causes immediate cravings. Consume chromium polynicotinate before any meal and your desire to eat more sugar will be lessened.
Cut out the sugar slowly. Trying to eliminate sugar after a previous diet of high consumption leads to sugar spikes. A far better approach is to taper the amount of sugar down over a period of a few weeks. This strategy helps to cure insulin resistance, a problem of too much insulin being released after any sugar is consumed, generally due to years of excess sugar or calorie consumption.
Go easy on the fructose. Your sugar consumption consists of glucose or fructose sugars and a Yale study has confirmed that fructose stimulates appetite far more, leading to binge eating. This means staying away from fast food, which is loaded with the common form of fructose, high fructose corn syrup (HFCS).
Try to limit your daily sugar intake to 50 grams or less. Rather your intention is a low-sugar diet or eliminating sugar, the excess sugar is the biggest problem here. Most every food has a form of sugar in it so start reading those labels and educate yourself on how much sugar you’re eating.
Skip a few meals. Reducing the overall amount of calories helps control insulin levels and fasting from time to time is a great way to stop eating so much. It’s healthy too!
Eat later in the day. The funny thing about sugar spikes is that they don’t become a problem until you have that first meal. Have a cup of coffee and eat later in the day. This allows you to eat more in the evening and keep sugar spikes at bay.
Drink more and exercise more. These items fall under the category of things that everyone knows but not everyone does. Exercise helps the body to regulate calories in a more efficient manner and water is just plain good for you in every way. Drink a glass of water as soon as you feel a sugar craving coming on and you’ll be surprised at how well it helps to control appetite.
After a few weeks of weaning yourself off of sugar, you’ll likely find that you have more energy, less aches and pains and a smaller waistline. The stable insulin levels will help you maintain an ample amount of energy and you’re on your way to a healthier lifestyle.