So You’re Hooked on Sugar? Here’s Exactly What To Do To Get Off It.
For more help than we can give you in a blog post, we’ve got awesome news… Dancers Shape is hosting a Sugar Detox! Nutrition Coach Megan Adams Brown is leading us to sugar freedom in 21 days. The DS Sugar Detox kicks off with our in-studio workshop on September 14. To join, email us in the studio or stop by the front desk to sign up.
It happens to the best of us. One thing leads to another and before you know it you’re hooked. I’m talking about when you have too much sugar and all of the sudden it’s back in your diet and you can’t seem to get rid of it.
This can be really frustrating when you’re trying to stick to a healthier routine. Maybe you went all week eating lots of greens, salads, smoothies… you know, healthy stuff.
Then a holiday, long weekend, or just a regular old weekend comes around, you have a little too much wine, bread, dessert (basically too much sugar)… all of it. And it’s all over.
Now all the delicious tempting things won’t stop staring at you.
And it’s so much harder to resist than it was before.
You know why?
Because sugar is like crack.
I know we joke, but seriously, sugar is like crack. cocaine. heroin. Pick your favorite hard core drug.
Sugar is just as addictive, if not more.
Studies show sugar lights up the same sections of the brain and the reward and craving you feel after eating it is on the same level or even stronger than addictive drugs.
Now think about how seriously we treat drug addicts and drug withdrawal when talking about these “hard core substances.”
And we’re all just expected to have complete control around the legal white stuff?!?!
Not exactly fair if you ask me.
We need to completely rethink our approach to sugar.
And we can all start by being a little nicer to ourselves about it and recognizing that at this level – at the crack, cocaine, heroin, hard. core. drug. level. We are no match.
Yes, we are dealing with a much stronger force than most of us realize. One that if we try going head to head with, we’ll loose every time.
Willpower isn’t enough.
So how do we defeat something that’s bigger than us?
The trick is to outsmart it.
I’ve put together eight strategies to help you take back the control and outsmart sugar.
These are the things I consistently go back to after a weekend of too much sugar. And you know, it usually only takes about three days and I’m back in my “yay, plants!” groove.
Here’s exactly what you need to do to get there:
Be nice to yourself.
Rather than trying not to have the sugar, focus all of your energy on taking the best care of you instead. Eat good food that nourishes you, do things that make you happy like read a book or watch your favorite show, spend time outside, catch up with a friend, move, stretch, meditate, take a bath, do a face mask, get plenty of rest and sleep… indulge in any little (or big) luxury that make you feel good.
Focus on adding in to crowd out.
Flood your diet and fill your plate with lots of fresh vegetables, fruits, lean proteins, nuts, seeds, and other healthy fats like avocado. When you focus on eating as much nutritious foods as you can, you’ll naturally have less room for the other stuff.
Eat three square meals and two snacks.
This will help keep your blood sugar stable and avoid any major dips that will exacerbate your sugar cravings. Don’t let yourself go hungry. Stay satisfied with appropriate sized meals – with lots of greens and fiber-rich vegetables, lean protein and healthy fats.
Find a healthier alternative.
If you need something to help get you over the hump, opt for a healthified version of a sweet treat like my carrot cake balls or one of the recipes in my free high energy sweets and desserts recipe eBook. You can download your free copy here.
Have more fat.
Fat helps keep your blood sugar balanced and helps you feel more full and satisfied. If you get hungry, grab a handful of nuts or a spoonful of almond butter – this will help keep your blood sugar balanced throughout the day.
Sip on peppermint or licorice root tea.
These herbal teas are naturally sweet and can help satisfy a sweet craving and curb your sweet tooth.
Flavor your water.
Add lemon, lime, orange, cucumber, strawberries, pineapple, mint, basil… whatever combo you like. This trick gives you a little bit of sweet flavor without adding sugar. It can help you drink more water too.
After having too much sugar your body is still processing all the extra fun you had. And that process requires lots and lots of water so be sure you’re drinking plenty. Half your body weight in ounces is a good rule of thumb to tell you exactly how much you should be drinking daily.
Find something to preoccupy your mind like a side project. Maybe it’s that closet you’ve been wanting to clean out, a photo album you’ve been wanting to make, or cards you’ve been meaning to send. You’ll be able to cross it off your list and it will help take your mind off the chocolate bunnies in your fridge.
Kick it with a friend.
Hard things feel a lot less so when you can do them with a friend. When you’re accountable to someone else and when you know someone else is in the same boat as you, it holds you to a higher standard. You don’t want to let them down, and it feels like if they can do it, you can do it. Support each other so you can really stick to it. In solidarity.