Who struggles with lack of energy around 3 pm and reaches for a sugar fix? Sure it feels good at the time BUT why doesn't that fix last and you need another one not long after the first one? No point me just saying out how bad it is for us, we all need ways to beat it.
My mum has commented that when she has given up sugar she feels like she is coming off a drug [this is funny as she has never smoked or rarely drunk alcohol and definitely never taken illegal drugs] BUT she complains of headaches, tiredness, feeling sick etc.
I have also felt in the past that if I am feeling stressed and lacking energy I CRAVE IT. Sure I felt good for a while but then the crash set in and I wanted it again. A vicious cycle.
To answer this I have included my Top 7 Reasons to Ban Sugar.
1. To be plain and simple - Sugar is Not Food – Sugar provides your body with little more then empty calories/kilojoules. It does not provide any nutritional value BUT in fact it actually causes your body to take vitamins from other organs in an attempt to process the sugar you are eating. This then leaves you undernourished.
2. Consuming Sugar Suppresses your Immune System - Sugar interferes with the body by overtaxing its defences. As a crohn’s disease sufferer this is something we don’t want to do. We want our body to be working at the highest possible level that it can be.
3. Having Sugar in your diet Makes You Nervous – There is a clear link between excess sugar and disorders like anxiety and depression because of the extreme levels of insulin and adrenaline. Again as a crohn’s disease sufferer we need to try and avoid stressing out our bodies as much as we can. We all have enough stress in our lives.
4. Sugar Causes Diabetes, Kidney and Heart Problems – Excess sugar can damage the pancreas's ability to function properly. Our digestion system is already compromised why have other organs not work properly.
5. We all know this one, Eating Sugar Rots Your Teeth – Sugar increases the bacteria in your mouth that erodes enamel. I don’t know about you but I already had a lot of problems with my teeth as a result of this disease.
6. It Makes You Fat – Sugar is filled with calories/kilojoules that are actually stored in your fat tissues. I know this sounds great if you are on the skinny side or have trouble gaining weight with your crohn’s BUT there are better ways to do this.
7. It makes you look older because Sugar Causes Wrinkles – Consuming a diet high in sugar damages the collagen in your skin. None of us want that.
So think about this as cutting sugar out of your diet will certainly improve your health.
How to Wean Yourself off Sugar.
I think this is such good news. It actually takes you about 7 days to get your addiction to sugar and sugary foods out of your system. However this does not mean your cravings will disappear but the intense addiction you experience needs that amount of time to go.
Now you can either wean yourself off sugar or go cold-turkey. The choice is yours — you pick the way that works for you as we are all different. However remember that having crohn’s disease is stressful enough so you might find the cold turkey method too much to handle. I think for most of us the weaning yourself off sugar slowly works better.
Tips on How to Wean Yourself off Sugar Slowly:
1. Never miss a meal – How do you feel when you miss a meal – STARVING right? – Well this feeling actually makes us want to eat ANYTHING to get our blood sugar levels under control. And what is the anything we select? Yes you are right, it is generally high sugar foods. Of course they bring our blood sugar levels under control BUT then we crash.
2. Consume fresh fruit – You might be thinking – hang on isn’t fruit high in sugar – Well yes it is but it is natural sugar and the fruit also contains vitamins, minerals and fibre which we need for a healthy life.
3. Limit your intake of Desserts – During your first week of weaning only eat this type of food once a day. In Week 2 only eat dessert food twice a week. Then in Week 3 only once a week. Make it your rule to have fruit [raw or poached/cooked] at least half of the time.
4. Avoid missing meals – When we miss meals our body goes into starvation mode. When you are in this state you will eat ANYTHING to get your blood sugar levels back to normal. GUESS what you reach for first? Yes the high sugar foods that get your blood sugar back to normal quickly BUT then what happens - WE CRASH AGAIN. If you avoid missing meals this does not occur.
5. Don’t drink sugary drinks – Do not drink the sugary drinks that are available everywhere eg iced teas, soda/soft drinks, energy drinks and juices. They are full of sugar. If you feel like the bubbles use sparkling mineral water and add fresh fruit eg lemons, limes and/or oranges.
6. Do not have sugary foods in your cupboards or fridge – Temptation is an ugly thing – avoid it
7. If you do have cravings go for a walk – It has been discovered that athletes actually crave more salty foods after exercise – it also clears your head which is a great thing for us all to do as well.
If you have any more questions then please free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit my Facebook Page at My Crohn's Doctor.
Yours in Health and Wellness
My Crohn's Doctor
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