What do you think is worse? Cigarettes or sugar? According to the Nature journal, “excess sugar consumption is contributing to 35 million deaths worldwide each year, from diseases like diabetes, heart disease, and cancer, an even greater burden on public health than infectious diseases.” I think the bigger question is would you rather die from lung cancer or diabetes, heart disease, and cancer?
That statement may sound overly dramatic; however, it is true that the world is experiencing the severe effects of this addictive substance.
I have witnessed the power of addiction to sugar in my own self and in my husband. When I was a kid I craved sugar ALL the time. I used to sneak decorating icing into my room and eat it right from the plastic tube. I thought it was amazing and delicious. Oh dear…
Since then I have conquered my sugar addiction (more on how later); however, my husband, who as a kid ate icing sugar out of the bag (yuck!) still struggles with his love of sugar. He is a very fit man who is extremely disciplined…when he chooses to be. We’ve had some “health kick weeks” where he bans himself from all sugar and refined carbohydrates. However, he always gets hit with a severely strong urge to consume sweet, deadly deliciousness and his healthy streak ends with a box of lucky charms, a jug of milk, a bag of chips, a loaf of white bread with Nutella, and a carton of ice cream.
Why is it so hard to cut out this food that we know causes diabetes, heart disease, and cancer!?!
Mark Hyman, a highly respected doctor of functional medicine, deals with this topic in his book The Blood Sugar Solution. He describes how sugar and refined carbs (which turn into sugar in your body) make us “prisoner[s] to food addiction” and cause our “hormones [to] run the show.”
Friends, it is time to break free of this deathly addiction and find the freedom from food we all desire and deserve.
Key Points From Dr. Hyman’s Book
Why We Are Losing The Weight Loss Battle
Sugary, processed foods (foods found in packages) are “intentionally manipulated” to create cravings and addiction
The more you eat, the more you crave it; therefore, you more you buy. It is a brilliant marketing ploy
“Sugar [is] eight times as addictive as cocaine”
“When your biology is damaged by sugar and processed foods….you become leptin resistant. That means that no matter how much of this fabulous appetite-suppressing hormone your body makes, your brain cannot read the signals. It is “resistant,” or numb, to the signals from leptin.” Dr. Mark Hyman
“High levels of insulin produced through all the sugar and fructose consumption (from high – fructose corn syrup and other sugars) block the leptin signals in your brain, so your body thinks it is starving even after a Big Mac, fries, and a large soda. Ever wonder how you can still be hungry right after a big meal? It is the insulin surge and leptin resistance. This is how sugar and junk food hijack your brain chemistry and metabolism.” Mark Hyman
Finding Food Freedom
The key is to substitute and replace these addictive foods with hormone balancing, brain healing ones
Lets reprogram our current sugar-crazed biology!
Insulin makes you hungry and gives you belly fat, so lets severely lower our insulin
“You can put your genes on a diet and program them for weight loss and health. Yes, you heard that right. You can’t swap out the genes you have inherited, but you can literally reprogram your genes to help you get slim and healthy.” Mark Hyman
The Solution: The 10-Day Detox Diet
What Will Happen:
Shut down the insulin surges
Improve your cells’ sensitivity to insulin
Improve leptin sensitivity
Increase the brake on appetite called PYY
Increase dopamine naturally
Reset your taste buds
You Will Learn To:
Detox from addictive substances
Empty and clean digestive system of toxins
Move your body
Listen to your body
Think about your mindset
Nurture your nervous system & stress
Design a life that allows for health
Notice your body (weight, waist size, blood pressure, blood sugar, lab tests, medical symptoms)
Connect with community
The Two Steps to Detox Success
Sugar and artificial sugars
Gluten (wheat, oats, etc.)
Beans & legumes
All processed foods
Chia, hemp, flax seeds
Extra virgin olive oil
Nuts & avocados
Also Remember To…
Your Daily Practices
Measurements (weight and body circumference)
Walk or exercise for 30 minutes
Make breakfast detox shake
Eat a snack (optional)
Have lunch (take PGX with a glass of water before eating)
PGX is a super fiber supplement that helps you feel full and metabolize your food better
Eat an afternoon snack (optional)
Enjoy dinner (take PGX with a glass of water before eating)
Write in detox journal
Take five breathing break
2 cups Epsom salts
1/2 cup baking soda
10 drops of lavender oil
Soak for 20-30 minutes
Sleep for 7-8 hours
Drink 8 glasses water during the day
Be mindful of media
Breakfast: Detox shake
Lunch: Super salad bar
Dinner: Protein with vegetables
Snacks: A handful of nuts (10-12 almonds, walnuts, pecans, macadamias) OR sliced crudites (veggies) with dip
A Final Note
Ok, that was a lot of information! Maybe you savoured all of those tips or started to zone out. Regardless, if you want to make some big health changes give Mark’s detox a try! It’s ONLY 10 DAYS, not forever.
When I was trying to get off of sugar I started to eat more fruit. Fruit is high in natural sugar but also high in fiber. The fiber helps counteract the effect that the sugar has on you. I found that every time I craved sugar and wanted to eat a sweet I would instead reach for an apple or a strawberry or a grape. Not an excessive amount of fruit but a small portion of natural sweetness.
Maybe give that a try and see if it helps if you even just want to do ONE THING differently.
Avoid sugar and refined carbohydrates (aka things that are white or in a package)
See how your body responds to dairy, gluten, and legumes (avoid if you respond negatively)
Increase your consumption of vegetables, berries, nuts, seeds, avocados, salmon, and eggs
Journal, take baths, spend time in community, and go for walks
All of these things help you feel better and rely less on food for pleasure and happiness
Drink lots of water
Take PGX supplement and see if it helps you feel fuller
Final Tip: Find something healthy that you LOVE and eat that when you get a craving.
Do you find sugar addiction hard to conquer? What is your experience with it?
Always remember that life is a journey and we’re never going to be 100% perfect right away. We all make mistakes and eat the wrong thing. What matters is what we do after that. Do we continue to spiral or do we choose to love and forgive ourselves and try better next time.