Are ice cream, cookies, candy, and soda your ultimate weakness?
If you can’t seem to stay away from sweets, there’s a good reason why: sugar is addictive. Eating sugar stimulates the brain to release the feel-good chemical known as dopamine. Surely there’s no harm in feeling good right? Think again. Essentially, sugar acts like a drug. In fact, the consumption of sugar activates the same receptors in the brain as heroin and morphine. Just like with drugs, your brain begins to crave more and more sugar, leading to weight gain and sugar-related diseases, including heart disease and diabetes.
Protein, fat, and carbohydrates are the three essential macronutrients that our bodies use in relatively large amounts. The carbohydrates, more specifically, are divided into four groups: monosaccharides, disaccharides, polysaccharides, and oligosaccharides. The first two kinds, monosaccharides and disaccharides, comprise what we know to be sugar. You have probably heard of sucrose, or table sugar, which is regularly used in food, but glucose, fructose, galactose, maltose, and lactose all make up the family of sweet-flavored substances. Sucrose comes from both sugarcane and sugar beets, while lactose, for example, occurs naturally in milk.
Quick Fact: Sugar has been linked to obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, macular degeneration, dementia, and tooth decay. One study found that sugar restriction is a necessary step in routine clinical care, especially when concerned with the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Studies by the University of Otago and the Riddet Institute of New Zealand led the World Health Organization to suggest the following: cut sugar intake to less than 10% of the total energy to help reduce the global obesity epidemic. Just by cutting sugars down to less than 10% of total food energy consumption, we could conquer obesity.
That’s big news. Considering the rapid weight gain that occurs with a spike in sugar intake, it’s no surprise to hear that reducing sugar intake is a key component in decreasing the high risk of being overweight and obese across most countries. Not to mention, the global costs of obesity are significant and cannot be ignored. In America alone, Reuters found that $190 billion dollars is spent annually on medical costs due to obesity. Additionally, overweight individuals spend around $2,000 more per year on their medical costs than a person of a healthy weight, and obese individuals spend around $5,500 more on an annual basis. Cutting sugar intake down to less than 10% of total energy is not hard to do, and could provide such promising results for both people’s health worldwide and the global costs of obesity.
So, what are the signs that you may be addicted to sugar?
First of all, many sugar addicts crave sugar at the same times each day. For example, if you crave sugar every afternoon because work has you in a slump and you use sugar as a pick-me-up, you might be dependent. Moreover, some addicts crave sugar all of the time. People with a persistent sweet tooth tend to always gravitate towards the sweeter options, even if healthier food choices are available. One of the clearest signs of sugar addiction is feeling great discomfort when you try to cut back. Sugar addicts can experience nausea, headaches, irritability, anxiety, and fatigue when withdrawing from sugar. However, these symptoms eventually fade once the body becomes reacquainted to a healthier diet.
If you are feeling inspired to restrict sugar consumption, the 21-day digestive health detox is the best detox diet approach for cutting out sugar. The 21-day approach focuses on optimum digestion and metabolism by emphasizing low-allergenic, unprocessed foods as ideal. By consuming foods that are not processed–which means they are made up of only one ingredient and contain no refined sugar–users will reset their taste palates. This brings overall balance to the digestive system, rids the body of its cravings, and leaves individuals healthier all around.
6 Simple Ways to Detox From Sugar
- Go on a seasonal detox. I believe in going cold turkey to eliminate sugar addiction. Consume the foods recommend in the 21 Day Digestive Health Detox for optimal detoxification.
- Take Oregano Oil to help rid of unfavorable bacteria
- Hydrate the moment you get a sugar craving with lemon water by adding fresh lemon to still or sparkling mineral water.
- Engage in daily exercise outdoors like yoga, swimming or hiking.
- Make sure you’re getting daily sunlight. Avoid the damaging UV rays during peak hours and opt for early morning or late afternoon sun instead.
- Stabilize the adrenal glands and thyroid with quality fats found in the detox sucah as: grass-fed butter, olive and coconut oils. In addition, add Siberian Ginseng to help with blood sugar throughout the day.