How To Do a Sugar Detox

6 Things That Happen to Your Body When You Quit Sugar

Sugar-related illnesses are on the rise. According to studies, diabetes, cardio-vascular problems and dementia are just some of the serious chronic diseases connected to over-indulging in sugar or the sweet white poison.

Sugar is Extremely Addictive

One medical study revealed that sugar consumption can give a lot more pleasure than cocaine. Another medical study claims that “sugar and sweetness can induce reward and craving that are comparable in magnitude to those induced by addictive drugs.” In fact one medical review of studies mentioned that people who try to quite sugar have “opiate-like withdrawal symptoms”.

The worrying thing is that sugar consumption can be linked to cancer.

Sugar and Cancer – The Connection

A scientific study published in the medical journal, Science, concluded that increased sugar intake promotes cancer development or oncogenesis.

The researchers discovered that when malignant cells received less glucose, this promoted the formation of organized structures that didn’t grow as rapidly.

Read more: Nine Year Study Explains The Relationship Between Sugar And Cancer

How To Quit Sugar for Good

Many people realize they are addicted to sugar when throughout the day, they would often find themselves craving something sweet and comforting that would give them a little lift. This surge in energy would soon drop, however, and then they would crave something sweet once again – vicious cycle. Sound familiar?

If so, it’s no wonder. We are surrounded by sugary delights in pretty packages that look so tempting and innocent. Unfortunately, such sweet treats are far from it.

So what can you do? Read on and follow these steps:

1. Eat regularly

Because we are often very busy, we tend to eat irregularly. For many people, if they don’t eat regularly, their blood sugar levels drop, they feel hungry and are more likely to crave sugary snacks. Eating three meals and two snacks or five small meals a day will help you to maintain normal blood sugar levels.

Eating a good breakfast is essential to prevent sugar cravings. Instead of having carbs and sugary foods for breakfast, include in your breakfast protein, healthy fat, fruits or vegetables. Try to include healthy fat and protein with each meal, as it helps control blood sugar levels.

2. Detox your body

When people do a detox and eliminate sugar from their diet, it often decreases their sugar cravings. Although the initial reaction is sugar cravings, which can be overwhelming, our body adjust itself and the desire for sugar will disappear.

Read my article about 10 simple ways to help your body detoxify and cleanse itself, or if you are interested in detoxifying your body, you can find more useful information in my e-book The Detox Guide. This guide will teach you how to use detox to cleanse and energize your body naturally and safely.

3. Avoid Emotional eating

Usually we tend to think that a bad mood, stress and anxiety cause us to eat more sugary foods, and we find a cure in eating them. Be honest with yourself and be aware of the emotional issues around your sugar addiction.

Eat what you eat with full awareness – ask yourself if you’re eating because you are bored, worried, stressed, and if the answer is “yes”, try to find another solution aside from eating, for example, go for a walk, read, meet with friend, practice yoga, go to a movie, listen to music.

Do something you love, get together with someone you love, and see how all of a sudden you’ll great desire so to eat sweets subsides.

For more tips read my article on how to beat emotional eating.

4. Eliminate or reduce processed foods

The amount of sugar in processed food is usually quite high. Some food items that don’t seem to contain sugar, can actually be high in sugar content. You need to get into the habit of reading labels to check what you put into your body and check the sugar content.

5. Mineral deficiencies

Deficiencies in some trace minerals, including chromium, vanadium, magnesium and zinc, which are involved with glucose metabolism and insulin production, may cause you to crave sugar.

A chromium deficiency may cause intense cravings for sugar. Natural sources of chromium include lean meats, asparagus, cheese, molasses, brewer’s yeast and whole grains.

Magnesium is involved with the regulation of glucose and insulin. If your body lacks magnesium, you may have strong cravings for sugar products, especially chocolate. Food sources of magnesium are spinach, Lima beans, almonds, hazelnuts, oat bran and brown rice.

Vanadium is needed by your muscles to obtain enough glucose for energy and also stabilizes insulin production. A vanadium deficiency may be the cause of some sugar cravings. Vanadium is found in shellfish, mushrooms, dill, parsley, wine, beer and whole grain products,

Zinc is also needed by your body a proper insulin and glucose utilization. A zinc deficiency can result in low insulin levels, which may lead to a craving for sugar. Zinc is found in foods such as beef, pork, oysters, lobster, yogurt, chickpeas, almonds and oatmeal.

6. Get enough sleep

For those who try to maintain a healthy weight and quit sugar, lack of sleep is not recommended at all. Fatigue makes people hungrier, and people who don’t sleep enough hours tend to consume hundreds of calories more a day (much of it in the form of unhealthy sweet foods).

You can find here more information about the damages of sleep deprivation.

7. Watch out for sugar substitutes

This includes ‘healthy sugar’ too, such as honey, maple syrup, or molasses. They may contain more nutrients than the refined white stuff, but unfortunately, sugar is sugar, and once it is in your body, it turns into what? You said it – sugar. Using stevia leaves is the best option, although some people don’t like the taste of it.

Further reading: Stevia: Is it safe, Proven Benefits, Side Effects (Science Based).

8. Watch out for dried fruit

Dried fruit may seem like a healthier snack option than cake. And indeed dried fruits have health benefits, but also many calories and sugar. I always felt a sense of smugness when I would be munching away at a packet of dried banana chips while my friend tucked into a cupcake.

I would also feel a pang of jealousy, not going to lie. However, dried fruit contain a lot of sugar. So watch up for portion size and don’t exaggerate with the quantity. If you give in to your cravings, have instead a piece of fresh fruit. It will help you to satisfy a sweet craving and is much healthier.

9. Don’t keep sugary foods at your home and office

Most important, take out of your home all those tempting and unhealthy foods such as cakes and cookies, chips, candies, chocolate and ice cream, and upgrade them to healthier options.

You cannot eat a whole package of ice cream straight out of the box if you won’t have ice cream in the freezer, right? We often buy food “for the children”, “For my husband / wife”, “for guests”, but honestly, who really eats it at the end? Do yourself (and your loved ones) a favor and don’t put all that stuff at home. If you really must eat something unhealthy, eat a small dose when you are away from home, but don’t let these foods go through the door.

10. Eat more vegetables

People think vegetables are boring, but come on, they are so good for you! Not persuaded yet to eat a carrot instead of a cupcake? Bear with me.

Vegetables are full of vitamins and fiber that help to keep you slim and your body working at its best. Furthermore, they keep you full for longer, as they take longer to digest and release energy at a slower rate than sugary foods and simple carbohydrates such as white bread and pasta, which soon turn into sugar once they are eaten.

The most recommended snack between meals are washed and cut vegetables that can be taken in a little bag to work and to errands. They contain very few calories and calm the urge to look for carbohydrates.

11. Drink more water

A simple, yet very effective tip. If you do nothing else, I urge you to swap fizzy drinks and sugar laden tea and coffee for lots of H2O. Two liters a day is the recommended amount for adults. A few gulps of water takes the edge of your appetite and helps you to lose weight as it boosts your metabolism and ultimately keeps your body healthy.

12. Cinnamon

Add cinnamon stick or cinnamon powder to hot drinks. Cinnamon reduces the desire for sweets and helps to improve the function of insulin in the cells (thus helping to maintain the blood sugar levels).

If you love cinnamon, you may be interested to read my article about how to use cinnamon as a medicine and which type of cinnamon to prefer.

13. L-glutamine

Many people struggle to have the will power and discipline, or just need the first “push”. Once your body has been used to lower amounts of sugar, people find it easier to continue with that process. But how do you even start?

Here comes L-glutamine which is an amino acid (a building block for proteins), found naturally in the body. It is an alternate source of glucose available to the brain, and it often relieves sugar cravings by helping to steady blood sugar.

You can open a capsule and put it under your tongue, and within minutes you will feel the crave reducing effect. A better way to use it is to put a heaped spoonful of glutamine powder (like this one) dissolved in water when craving strikes or as a preventive measure (preferably on an empty stomach).

Alternately you can take 3 or 4 times a day between meals. It might be the first step you need to let your body get used to consuming less sugar which will have a much better effect on your diet (and waistline!). It may take a month for your body to wean off sugar, and you won’t need to supplement with L-Glutamine any more.

Be Patient

It may take you around four weeks to reduce your sugar dependence. You may feel like you want to aggressively rip open a packet of Oreos within those days, but stay strong, you can do it! Just think how great you will feel when you’ve kicked the habit.

Many people who enjoy a diet that is low in sugar report that they have lost weight, have clearer skin, feel more energized, a lot healthier, and in turn, happier. Of course you can still treat yourself now and again to sweet treats. Life’s too short not to. The difference is that now you will feel in control and don’t feel that crazy craving for sugar anymore.

Read more: 10 Signs You Are Eating Too Much Sugar

When the sugar craving pops up, think about all the benefits that will happen to your body when you quit sugar.

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