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Here Are Some Amazing Benefits Of Cutting Back On Sugar
Sugar is everywhere and we all know it. So why is it so hard to cut sugar out of your diet? Daily, we consciously or subconsciously, consume large quantities of sugar, which makes it such a challenge to quit sugar.
You may already know the excess consumption of sugar is not only addictive but also dangerous for your body.
I have agreed to a challenge with two colleagues at work to drop sugar from our diet for at least eight weeks! We start in just under three weeks so wish me luck! To cut sugar out of your diet is essential to the long-term health of your body and brain. For a sweet tooth like me, quitting sugar will be difficult.
Why It Is So Hard To Cut Sugar Out Of Your Diet?
The tough part will be getting through the phase of the side effects, mood swings, and restlessness. It will not be easy.
I have done it in the past and it was hell at first! It took two weeks for my body to find its balance. After that, the weight slipped off and I was always 100% full of energy. The changes that came after the first withdrawal phase were amazing, and I honestly should have stuck to it for longer than the six months I did.
At the moment, it is almost impossible for me to resist sweet treats. Yes, we start in January, however, it is not a “new year’s resolution”. We all know those don’t work. I am excited about the challenge and being able to reach my goal. My main goal is to spend more hours of my life feeling purposeful.
Paying attention to the choices and activities that create more of these experiences for me.
I am sure if you know me well and you are reading, you might be thinking to yourself, “now this I want to see! Sheri saying no to sugar” – LOL. Well, here’s the thing, I want to focus less on what I want to do and focus more on how I want to feel. That’s why I have taken on this challenge.
Sugar Addiction And Cravings
Our brains depend on glucose (sugar) for energy. Without glucose, your brain would struggle to work. We often reward ourselves with sweet treats. For me, it’s Ice cream, cakes, and cookies.
Sugar causes a rush of both glucose and endorphins in your blood, which gives you a short burst of energy. Instead of your energy levels staying up, sugar will crash your energy levels, which can cause you to feel weak and lethargic.
Your sugar cravings are likely different to that of your best friend, sister, brother, dad, neighbour etc. This is because addictions are habitual. Habits form when your brain is satisfied with the end result. Whatever it may be. Alcohol, drugs, sugar.
Sugar comes in many forms, and it’s almost impossible to avoid if you eat any type of processed or already-prepared foods.
If your diet includes muffins, doughnuts, bagels, chocolate, and fizzy drinks, then chances are your sugar cravings result from what you have eaten. The more you eat them, the more your brain will want them.
It is a never-ending vicious cycle. So let’s look at what happens when you cut sugar out of your diet…..for good.
7 Things That Will Happen To Your Body When You Stop Eating Sugar
Many changes will start happening in your body when you cut sugar out of your diet. It may start with changes you dislike or are not used to, but the end results are fantastic. If you can’t go cold turkey, you should start consuming foods that can help to stop your sugar cravings.
1. Intense Cravings When You Stop Eating Sugar
Let’s get straight to the point. When you cut sugar out of your diet, you will experience intense cravings. You will be tempted to eat or drink something sweet and sugary.
Withdrawal symptoms will show up in the form of headaches, lethargy, nausea, fatigue, weakness, muscles aches, pains, inability to sleep, lightheadedness, the list goes on, and on and on.
The first two to three days after you stop eating sugar are the most challenging. This is the phase you have to overcome first.
You may not feel 100% like yourself for the next week or two as your body copes with the withdrawal. Don’t worry about slip-ups, they happen, it’s normal.
Cutting out sugar from your diet and detoxing your body is a process.
As your sugar dependence decreases, your motivation to continue will increase.
2. Your Amount Of Headaches And/Or Migraines Will Decrease
We all get headaches. Some of us more often than others. Sugar is not always the reason behind your headaches, but it is a contributor. Sugar spikes and crashing blood sugar levels are often ignored as the causes for your frequent headaches or migraines.
Did you know sugar increases the severity of headache pain? Ugh!
3. Lower Your Sugar Intake to Reduce High Blood Pressure And Cholesterol Levels
When was the last time you checked your blood pressure? Two years ago when you got sick and had to do so at the doctor’s office? Is your blood pressure higher than it should be?
When you cut sugar out of your diet, you will see your blood pressure drop. For some people, quitting sugar can reduce your cholesterol and blood pressure numbers by up to 30 per cent.
4. You’ll Drop A Bit Of Weight
This a plus without trying to lose weight by starving yourself. When you drop the calories found in sugar, you will see your weight melt off. I love to dance, and occasionally I will do some Zumba.
When I stopped eating sugar, my weight dropped without exercising too much. Don’t get me wrong, exercise is important.
All I am saying is, your body will stabilize your blood sugar which helps facilitate weight loss.
5. When You Remove Sugar From Your Diet You Lower Your Anxiety
Sugar can weaken your body’s ability to respond to stress. It does not cause anxiety but worsens anxiety symptoms. This also means a high-sugar diet can impact your mental health.
Research has tied heavy sugar consumption to an increased risk of depression. Sugar suppresses activity the BDNF hormone which is low in people who suffer from depression and schizophrenia.
6. You’ll Sleep Soooooo Much Better
Do you have trouble falling asleep? It’s no wonder that my sweet tooth and I have had trouble sleeping in the past. If you try these tips to help you fall asleep and it is still a challenge, then you’ve got one more reason to kick the sweet stuff.
Like coffee, sugar has a stimulating effect, so avoid sugar before going to bed. Many claim to fall asleep 30 minutes after having chocolate bars before bed. Maybe true, but what happens? They’ll be up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom. Our bodies need to clear excess sugar. Is it really worth interrupting a good night’s sleep?
7. Ditching Sugar Will Clear Your Mind
When you stop eating sugar, you will notice a wonderful and immediate benefit – a clearer head. High amounts of sugar intake impact your memory negatively. Go for a diet filled with nutrients and good fats. High sugar in your diet causes insulin resistance, and damages communications between brain cells that fuel learning and memory formation.
Here’s How Best To Avoid Sugar
While sugar is naturally found in foods like fruits and vegetables, this type has little effect on your blood sugar and is considered very healthy.
- Avoid artificial sweeteners
- Swap soda and energy drinks for carbonated water
- Read all food labels
- Prepare your own food
- Rid your kitchen of sugar-loaded anything
Make The Tough But Easy Decision To Do Something Great For Yourself
Sugar is destructive and is found everywhere. Yes, your body needs trace amounts of sugar to function, just don’t overdo it as I have.
Allow your body to go through the phase of detoxing, then watch your desire for sweet stuff disappear. For this journey to be successful, consider the above benefits.
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When you cleanse properly, you reset your body. This will help curb your craving for sugar and help create an appetite for the good stuff. Again, you don’t need to cut ALL sugar out at once.
You can start by cutting out sugary beverages for the first two weeks, then cut those beverages and junk food for the following two weeks. Next, reduce carbs for a month. Settings your goals this way may help you stick to your main goal, without falling off that sugar wagon.
Cutting out sugar out of your life completely isn’t a realistic permanent lifestyle change.
Figure out what works for you, create a plan and stick to it.
Have you ever cut sugar out of your diet or plan to? How was your journey?
What goals have you set to make you feel better about yourself?
Please share with me in the comments section below.