Don’t eat sugar: fight the urge and don’t let those cravings get the better of you. If you’re a sugar addict, chances are you already know, and like all addicts you need to take sugar addiction seriously.
As a sugar addict myself, I know all about that super strong pull of the poisonous white stuff. There’s nothing good to say about sugar, and I do mean absolutely nothing good.
Sugar is 100% simple carbohydrate, and 100% bad for your health.
Is sugar addiction a real thing?
You bet it is. In a study on rats, the rodents were offered either morphine or sugar feeds. Guess which one they chose?
They went for the sugar, in preference to a hard drug. The sugar feed was the more attractive to the rats.
OK, I know you’re not a rat, but it demonstrates that sugar can do the same thing to the pleasure centers of your brain as heavy-duty illegal drugs.
Once you know this, you’ll know that sugar addiction is not only real, it’s tough.
You’re up against the same insane pull towards your favourite drug as someone on cocaine, or tobacco or alcohol.
On top of that, your sugar addiction is in many ways even harder to kick than any other addiction and here’s why:
You’re surrounded by sugar, and hidden sugars. Sugary treats are literally everywhere. It’s impossible to go through a single day without coming up against the one substance that you find so hard to control.
From the office donuts, to your friends birthday, to your birthday: From those romantic chocolates to the candies you got as a child:
We are constantly told that sugary foods are a treat, and something we deserve: We reward our friends, our family and ourselves with sugar, and we associate it with pleasure and comfort.
The surprise isn’t that you have a sugar addiction; the surprise is that some people don’t have a sugar addiction.
What’s so bad about sugar?
Sugar is the number one cause of dangerous inflammation in your body.
Sugar causes the chronic inflammation that is associated with multiple health issues, including these:
If that hasn’t scared you enough just think about how the rates of cancer, heart disease and type 2 diabetes are going sky-high.
The truth is that these diseases have become common in direct correlation to the ever growing amount of sugar now consumed on a standard American diet.
Most Americans are consuming way too much — on average, nearly 57 pounds of added sugar per person, every year. This could be affecting us in ways that make us prone to craving more sugar and to obesity.(1)
Unfortunately, it’s not just in America that this is true. Just about every country on the planet has seen a massive increase in sugar consumption.
Sugar has an enormous negative impact on health, don’t underestimate it, and take your addiction seriously.
Don’t eat sugar: fight the urge
Sugar addiction isn’t just real: it’s dangerous.
If you don’t deal with this issue, you will sooner or later pay the price with your health. Walking away from sugar is difficult, but it’s something you literally have to do to stay healthy.
Like all addictions, you need to have a few coping behaviors worked out and in place before the urge to eat sugar is upon you.
At the moment you’re offered a delicious looking donut mid-afternoon at work, you won’t be in any fit state to summon the will power to say no.
It’s these sorts of situations that you need to think about ahead of time.
Try to imagine a tray of amazing donuts being passed around your office. Really think about this: imagine the colors, the sprinkles, the chocolate….
And work out how you’re going to say no.
If at all possible, don’t offer an excuse. When you do this, you simply give the other person something to argue with. For example, you say you’re on a diet. Will your coworker accept that excuse and leave you in peace?
No chance! The next words out of their mouth are going to be something along the lines of:
- It’s Jane’s/John’s/my birthday. That’s only once a year, just one today won’t hurt!
- You’ve been working so hard, you deserve to have a donut.
- They/I’ll be upset if you don’t have one
- One won’t make any difference to you!
My guess is that you can come up with a long list of their comebacks too. The best advice is just a straightforward no. You could follow it with something along the lines of: I don’t want a donut, I prefer to miss this treat, thank you.
Get your speech ready and practiced beforehand, deliver it and move on. You have a right to protect your health.
Can you imagine an alcoholic being pushed into accepting “just one drink”. Of course, you can’t. Other people need to take your addiction seriously too.
The one minute thought
This is my favourite way of avoiding sugar. Now I’m not saying this works all the time, but it works often enough to make a difference.
When I’m tempted with a slice of cake, pie or some other sweet snack, this is what I say to myself:
This cake, pie or whatever will take about one minute to eat. One minute!
It will be over with in almost no time at all, but it’s poisonous effect will be stuck with me. The sugar will harm my body, spike my insulin levels, and ruin my keto diet.
Further, it will trigger massive sugar cravings for more and more of the same. I’ll be suffering, and that suffering will go on a lot longer than the one minute it took to eat the item.
This means that after my one minute treat is eaten, I’ve still got all the longings for something sweet plus I’ve now caused my cravings to be even stronger.
The obvious follow on thought is that one minute of pleasure just isn’t worth the price.
Try this for yourself. Remind yourself that your cravings won’t stop after you’ve had the pie. The opposite is true, you’ll be craving sugar even more.
You’ll have to get creative here, and work out a few ways that you can make things easier for yourself.
Here are a few things that have worked for others, and could work for you too:
- Don’t buy sugar containing foods, and don’t store them at home. If it’s in your cupboard ( or hidden under your pillow) it’s going to shout your name. Sooner or later, you’re going to eat it.
- Read articles about how bad sugar is – don’t let yourself forget how important it is to walk away.
- Make sure you’re not thirsty – this can often be mistaken for hunger. Make sure you drink enough sugar free drinks.
- Don’t use artificial sweeteners – there is some evidence that the sweet taste alone can trigger cravings. If you’re an addict, you don’t want to remind yourself about the taste of sugar.
- Take note of your mood when you crave sugar, are you bored, lonely or sad? While it’s normal to feel these emotions, if you’re feeling like this often you may consider some professional help.
Finally, consider the health of your gut bacteria. There are certain bacterias that thrive on sugar, and will send your brain messages to seek out a supply.
This can lead you to craving sugar which is what these bacteria need to survive.
For further information about this read here.
The take home message about sugar addiction
Sugar addiction is real, and it’s difficult to deal with.
However, there are so many health issues involved in sugar consumption that it’s not an addiction you can afford to ignore.
Treat is as the addiction it is, and prepare your environment and yourself to be in the best possible place to walk away for sugar in any form.
You’re not alone, and it certainly isn’t your fault. We are all surrounded by advertising designed to have us eating as much sugar as possible.
Take heart that you can mostly beat this addiction, even if you have the occasional set back.
If you do slip, take the time to work out what the trigger was, and set a plan in place that will help you to avoid or cope with the same situation in the future.
This is an ongoing fight, but it does get better. The longer you manage to go without sugar, the less often you’ll be overcome with the desire to eat it.
Always remember that walking away from sugar is the single most important thing that you can do for your health.