Breaking Sugar Addiction

If you can’t say no to candy, cookies and soda, you may be one of millions of people who are addicted to sugar. For some people, sugar acts like a drug in the body, and like any other drug, can cause an initial high followed by withdrawal symptoms.Symptoms of sugar addiction include,powerful cravings for sugar, refined carbohydrates or alcohol,mood swings,anxiety,depression,irritability or anger,fatigue,headaches,dizziness,feeling better after eating sugar,It’s not just lack of willpower – it really is an addiction,Studies have shown that sugar has a similar effect to cocaine, morphine and other drugs of addiction. Eating large amounts of sugar releases a brain chemical called dopamine that makes you feel alert, energized, motivated and enthusiastic. But over time, sugar reduces the brain’s sensitivity to dopamine and you start to become addicted to sugar – you need more dopamine just to feel normal and without a sugar hit to boost your dopamine production, you feel sluggish, tired, foggy and irritable.[

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This helps to explain why anything that is pleasurable can potentially also be addictive. If you want to break your sugar addiction, I therefore recommend a two-pronged strategy. On the one hand you need to deal with the psychological side of your addiction, but you also need to think about how to reduce your cravings physiologically, by doing things that will help to make healthy alterations to your brain chemistry.One of the most pernicious aspects of sugar addiction is that it can easily foster binge eating in general. Repeatedly consuming large amounts of sugar can cause your insulin system to become somewhat reactive and unstable. Dips in blood sugar bring about general food cravings, and tend to push your appetite to get out of control. The presence or absence of an addiction to sugar can well make the difference between being able to control your eating habits, and being completely out of control

L-Glutamine is an amino acid (a building block of protein) that the brain can use for fuel when blood sugar is low. It also helps to stabilize blood sugar levels. 2 tsp taken three times a day between meals is usually enough to eliminate cravings, but if you do still get cravings, try sprinkling a little glutamine powder underneath your tongue and letting it dissolve – your cravings will disappear almost instantly.Research has shown that 3000 mcg per day of a B vitamin called biotin helps eliminate cravings and stabilize blood sugar in people with both low blood sugar and high blood sugar. In addition, zinc, vitamin E, several other B vitamins and omega 3 fatty acids can all help maintain blood sugar and reduce cravings.

Once you’ve dealt with the cravings, you will find it much easier to change to a healthy diet – avoid sugar and refined carbohydrates, eat plenty of protein, fresh fruits and vegetables, healthy fats and moderate amounts of complex carbohydrates. Protein should be eaten at every meal as it helps maintain blood sugar levels by stimulating the release of glucagon, a hormone that balances the action of insulin. Fresh fruit and vegetables provide a good supply of the vitamins and minerals needed to keep blood sugar stable.It’s important to avoid all forms of sugar, including so-called “healthy” alternatives such as brown sugar, honey and dried fruit. Don’t be tempted to cheat – your brain is sensitive to sugar and having “just one” cookie or soda can be enough to set off cravings, trigger a sugar binge and start the cycle of craving and bingeing again.

You’ll be surprised by how different you will feel after a few weeks of no sugar. Many people describe a sense of calm and balance, lifting of depression or anxiety, increased energy and better health, not to mention weight loss and an end to constantly feeling hungry. Next time you feel the urge for a sugar hit, reach for your l-glutamine instead and overcome your addiction to sugar.If you continually give in to your cravings and eat that donut, cookie, candy or other sweet product, it leads to a rapid spike in blood sugar followed by the inevitable crash which leads to even more cravings for sugar. Over time this sugar addiction can lead to serious health problems.

If you find preparing fruit boring, experiment with finding the fastest ways to prepare salads (you should be able to get preparation time down to around 5-10 minutes with a little practice), and get into the habit of preparing them at the same time every day. You can keep a fruit salad reasonably fresh all day in an air-tight plastic container. Even fruits like apples and bananas, which turn brown if chopped and left out in the air, will remain fairly fresh if mixed with juicy fruits such as chopped oranges or grapes and sealed in an air-tight sandwich box.

Sugar Raises Insulin Levels.The human body is not equipped to handle so much sugar. Consuming too much can lead to weight gain and to insulin resistance. Insulin is the hormone that regulates blood sugar. Over time, the body becomes resistant to the extra insulin, thus paving the way for Type II diabetes. This means the process of removing sugar from the blood becomes defective and the pancreas must secrete more insulin to get the sugar out of the blood. This is one of the most important reasons to end your addiction.

Dopamine is a neurotransmitter, and is very similar to adrenaline chemically; it also affects brain processes that control movement, emotional response, and the ability to experience pleasure and pain. This explains why, when you’re having a rough day, you turn to a plate full of brownies! The sugar in those brownies acts as a regulator which produces “highs” that temporarily neutralize emotional lows!Before you wage an all-out war against sugar, you must know your opposition! You must also know that sugar isn’t always labeled as sugar.

Why Manage Sugar Addiction.The good news is that if you lower your consumption of sugar, you will also lower your risk of obesity, heart disease, diabetes and cancer. But for many of us, this is easier said than done. Most Americans eat and drink sweets without giving much thought to damaging effects it has on the body. This is why you need to end your sugar addiction starting now!

Tips to End Your Sugar Addiction.The best way to end cravings is to break the cycle completely. Start by avoiding all sugar including sugar substitutes. Read nutrition labels carefully. You may be surprised at how much sugar is found in processed foods.Consider 5-HTP to help curb cravings for sugar and carbs. The body uses 5-HTP to produce the mood boosting brain chemicals – serotonin and dopamine. Low levels of these chemicals can lead to intense cravings for sugar and carbs.Fight sugar cravings all day by drinking dark roast coffee in the morning. Studies show that a dark brew coffee helps keep blood sugar levels steady which lowers the urge to eat sweets.

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