A sugar detox is something everyone should consider.

Teaspoon full of sugarI believe sugar is one of our greatest addictions and continues to be increased in our food supply to enhance food flavor.  This is happening without most people knowing it and it is harming your health!

Do you know what is the most harmful substance found in just about everything you eat?

Do you know what  substance  causes you to age faster, gain weight and add fat around your waist?

Do you know what lowers your immune system, stresses your pancreas, causes insulin resistance,  creates toxins and also is responsible for many mood swings?

Sugar!

You may feel a clunk inside when you read this although if you are honest you have known this was true. It might be uncomfortable to look at how big of an issue sugar is. We want to believe sugar is our friend because it tastes so good and virtually everyone is addicted to it. I must tell you….It is not your best friend. In fact, it is not a friend at all.

Drinks such as sodas, tea, coffee drinks, and juices contain large amounts of sugar. Foods we eat every day like bread and other baked goods, fruits, candy bars and even some vegetables have high sugar content. Today you will find sugar in virtually all food. It is in almost everything on the shelves in the grocery store and in basically all processed foods.

There is only one way to permanently remove added sugar from your diet.  Only eat foods that come from nature and not in a package.
Orange Juice "31 grams of sugar!"

Orange Juice “31 grams of sugar!”

You must read labels on everything that you purchase and choose wisely when you decide what you ingest.  All processed foods must be eliminated and know how much sugar, preservatives and other additives are in what you eat or drink.

Some of what I am writing here might seem a little radical at first. The degree that you desire to make significant changes in your health and well-being will help you decide how enthusiastically you would like to follow some of these recommendations.  YOU are always the one who gets to decide.  I love to give options so your decision can be well informed.

If you would like better health, you must also completely eliminate artificially sweetened beverages as well. I have banned all soft drinks and juice drinks from my home to make sure no one eats or drinks too much sugar.  Even pure fruit juice with nothing added has very high levels of sugar which will cause all of the same issues I mentioned above.  Be conscious of reading ALL labels and again,  know what you are ingesting.

The American Heart Association recommends that adults have no more than 25 mg or 6 teaspoons of sugar daily. This is less than what you will find in ONE regular soda.  In the year 1900 the average American consumed 25 pounds of sugar per person, per year. In the year 2012, the figure went  up to an average of 150-175 pounds per person. These statistics show how serious the problem sugar consumption is.

Refined sugar has been linked to many different health problems such as a lack of sleep from insomnia or feelings of dizziness. Some studies have also linked sugar consumption to allergies and even manic depression. Tooth decay, ADHD, hair loss, hypertension, diabetes, cancer, and cardiovascular disease have also been linked to sugar.

Sugar has one of the most addictive qualities in the world. It causes  weight gain and obesity because the body turns unused glucose into fat. One of the most supportive ways of preventing weight gain and feeling good is to avoid added sugar in your diet.

Yes as you can see, sugar is super addictive. The body has a reward system that releases dopamine the same way a drug user gets satisfaction from using drugs.

Sugar’s Role in Our Body

Our bodies are designed to process glucose or sugar from the foods we eat and turn it into fuel for the functioning of our body. This fuel gives your body the energy to do its normal functions such as respiration and digestion. Simple sugars in our food today are taken into the body extremely fast and processed to give us a quick boost of energy. This can lead to fluctuation in blood sugar levels which can lead to hyperactivity, insulin resistance, reactive hypoglycemia, fatigue and even hypertension.

How to Identify the Hidden Sugar in Your Household

The more aware we have gotten with the effects of sugar the more creative the manufacturers have gotten in their labeling.  I believe in the importance of knowing exactly what it is you are eating.  Below are many pseudo names for sugar that are in food and beverages.

It’s very likely that if the ingredient ends in “ose” or “ol” that it is sugar. Dextrose, Fructose, Lactose or Maltose just to name a few are all derivatives of sugar.  Even though Fructose does come from fruits and vegetables through a “process” it’s Sugar!  Similarly Lactose is Sugar processed from skimming milk down and Maltose in made from grain.  Carbitol, erythritol, glucitol, hexitol,  inversol,  sorbitol, mannitol and newly popular Xylitol are all sugar’s.

Anything with the name of Sugar connected to it is absolutely sugar.  Brown sugar, raw sugar  and Sugar alcohols are definitely SUGAR!

Sugar is grown in the form of a cane so this is where cane crystals, cane sugar, evaporated cane juice.

Corn is SugarCorn is another source in creating processed Sugar.  High-fructose corn syrup is one of the most popular followed by corn sweetener, corn syrup, corn syrup solids.

Anything with the name of Syrup is made up primarily of Sugar so be aware!

Fruit juice concentrates sounds healthy like it comes from fruit right?  Anything that’s concentrated is processed so this is definately sugar!  Another one is honey or nectar comes from bees right?  Fooled again it’s  loaded with Sugar!

Diglycerides, disaccharides, fructooligosaccharides, glucosamine, isomalt, maltodextrin, malted barley, rice malt, sorghum and sucanat are also all sugar’s.  There are well over 100 names out there that are sugar, sugar derivatives or sugar alcohols I have named the ones most common at the time of this article.

How to Start a Sugar Detox

StartToo much of anything is harmful for us, especially if it is sugar! This is why sugar detox has become so popular. A sugar detox takes commitment but once you are on one and stick with it, you will feel the difference.

To start and maintain a sugar detox you basically have to remove added sugar from your diet. A great way to start this is by avoid adding sugar to your food and drinks AND stop eating foods that have sugar added to them. Water is the best when it comes to hydrating and supporting detoxing. Ditch the sugar in your morning drink and try herbal tea, black coffee (if you are a coffee drinker) or unsweetened tea. Avoid all forms of soft drinks, energy drinks and even pure fruit juice or juice drinks. If you would like, take your pure, clean, filtered water and put a slice of organic orange or pineapple in it. You will experience just a touch of flavor that will help satisfy you.

It gets tricky when it comes to the foods we eat. You have to learn to replace the sugary food you consume and take on a healthy way of eating. Stop eating the cakes, sweetened breads, pre-packaged desserts and even candy! Fresh organic fruits (eat the whole fruit, not the juice) and vegetables should be a daily component in your diet.

Unsweetened yogurt is also great for you. Nuts and seeds are great for snacking without the added sugar snack. Be comforted in knowing that you body will not have too little sugar. Most foods convert to sugar and will support your body metabolism.  You never need to add sugar to anything you eat or drink to have what you need, especially if you eat organic fruits and vegetables.

What to Avoid

No High Fructose Corn SyrupYou want to avoid foods that contain high fructose corn syrup. In order do this, look at the labels on your food closely since high fructose corn syrup can be found in almost everything that we eat today.

Be wise in your choices and smart at the same time by replacing sugary snacks with healthy alternatives. Stock up on healthy snacks such as whole live fruit (not dehydrated) and nuts. Remove all processed snacks from your home to avoid temptation.

Condiments and salad dressings that we eat almost daily also have a large amount of sugar in them. Rid yourself of the ketchup, barbeque sauce and the various salad dressings you have in the fridge. Do it today!  Making your own salad dressing and glazes is a great way to ensure that you are not being loaded down with added sugar.

Stay Motivated!

MotivationEliminating  sugar is doable, even if you have a sweet tooth.  It is important to remember that the harm that sugar can do to your body far outweighs the high you get after eating a cookie.  Since sugar is addictive, chances are, that completely cutting sugar from your diet may present a challenge at first.

Start slowly  by eliminating sugar in your coffee or tea, and limit yourself to having desserts and soft drinks on certain days of the week. Stop yourself from going on a sugar binge by rewarding yourself with a scoop of ice-cream or a cookie for each week you avoid temptation.  That would be rather counter-productive.  Instead do something fun to celebrate that is not related to food.  Perhaps a concert or movie or whatever brings you joy.

Completely and instantly avoiding sugar is usually not possible, for most people.  And if you limit your intake to start, it will go a long way in making you healthier.  Create a plan and each week add another food, drink or product to remove from your diet.  If you are feeling the need for something sweet use whole, organic fruit.  Chew each bite at least 20 times and really savor the sweetness of this healthy replacement.  It is not about feeling deprived.  It is about replacing harmful foods with healthy foods.  This is a good way to really care for yourself.

FIBER: YOUR NEW BEST FRIEND

Showing 10 High Fiber Fruits

Choosing these high fiber fruits over fruit juice minimizes your sugar cravings.

Let’s face it, eliminating all sugar in your diet is probably impossible.  However, adding fiber, both insoluble and soluble fiber in your diet will decrease the speed at which sugar (especially simple sugars) hits your liver and other crucial organs. It will reduce the rate of insulin production which will reduce the rate at which your body stores fat and produces toxins in the body. The list goes on and on.

The more fiber you eat, the less you will be craving sugar.  Honest!

Fiber is found in all fruits and vegetables which is why making these  a staple of your diet will produce long term health benefits.  Eat an orange rather than orange juice.  Eat an apple rather than having  apple juice.

Learn what foods are highest in fiber and add these to your diet. It will make a world of difference for you and your bowels will you love you for it.

What To Expect

Telling you like it is, is important to me.  Depending upon how passionate you are about Detoxing from Sugar you may experience some of the following  things.  If you do, stay committed and do not waiver, rather understand your body is removing an addiction and the toxins associated with sugar.  It is a good thing even if it temporarily feels like a bad thing.

I have detoxed from sugar and what I and others have experienced are things like:  tiredness, irritability, lack of motivation, nausea and sleepiness.

You may or may not feel any of these things.  If you have any of the above symptoms  it is best to eat a piece of cheese or protein which will stabilize your blood sugar but it may take up to 20-30 minutes.  If you feel light headed or dizzy you can take a very small amount of whole fruit and within 10 minutes, a piece of protein like a piece of chicken.

These things usually only occur if you go “cold turkey”.  If you go slowly they rarely will show up.  If you do go slowly be sure to follow the plan that you set up so you are consistent and will follow through.

After looking at what sugar does to us it is easy to see why so many people are looking to a sugar detox to help them. With sugar being everywhere today it will be take true focus and commitment to not break your detox. When you are successful at removing the added sugar from your diet you will feel the difference.  When this occurs, it will be easy to avoid all of those foods that rob you from feeling like your great natural happy self.

IMPORTANT TIPS

  • Find an accountability partner to help keep you on track during the challenging times.
  • Even better, enlist a family member or close friend to go on the Sugar Detox program with you.
  • Before you begin your sugar detox, remove ALL products, sauces, drinks, dressings, chips, cookies, cakes, desserts etc. from your home.
  • Avoid going “Cold Turkey.”  Gradually eliminate the worst kinds of sugary foods over time.
  • Treat sugar as an addiction. In many ways, it is no different than alcohol or drugs. (I know this is radical, but it’s still true).
  • Explore the emotions you have when you are craving sugar.  Emotions are a major cause of the inability to stay away from sugar.
  • Never go shopping when you are hungry and DO NOT bring  sugary processed foods into your home.  If they are in your pantry, you will be a sitting duck when the urge for sugar arises.

Imagine living a healthy life free from cancers, obesity and premature aging.  When you stop consuming sugar you are headed in that direction.  Feeling great is your natural state.  When you take the steps to eliminate sugar you will be removing the blocks that interfere with feeling healthy and alive.

Start a sugar detox today and let me know what difference it made in your life!  Leave a comment and let us know how you are doing.

Love Yourself beach

Author: Lisa Hosmer