Here I am, starting day four of my “No Sugar for 30 days Challenge”. And so far I’ve done really, really well.
But the cravings?
Yea, those are tough.
So let’s talk about them shall we?
Why We Have Cravings
Our bodies can crave sugar for a many reasons. One reason being a sign of hormonal imbalance caused by our diet. You see, when we don’t eat the right nourishing foods for our bodies, it causes nutritional deficiencies and bad digestion. When that happens, our hormones are out of whack. Both of these things (nutritional deficiencies and imbalanced hormones) lead to low serotonin.
And wouldn’t you know, sugars and simple carbs give us a short boost of serotonin. A quick mood booster if you will.
Another reason for cravings is adrenal fatigue, or lowered function of our adrenals. Again, this one is tied to our bodies trying to elevate our mood. When we are stressed for periods of time our adrenals have a very hard time regulating hormones and mood, which of course make us crave the things that can elevate it, even for a short amount of time. Unfortunately, these short little pick-me-ups, do more harm than good.
Reason number three for sugar cravings: Candida yeast overgrowth. What you need to know is all of us have bacteria and yeast in our digestive system. The problem comes in when the candida yeast grows to big for it’s britches! The overgrowth can easily start by a round of antibiotics, since the rest of the good bacteria in your system is killed off along with the bad. After antibiotics you may be sick over and over again, unable to fight off future infections after taking them, as well as have symptoms of yeast overgrowth. (eczema, fatigue, cravings, unstable mood) This yeast actually feeds on sugar! So when you begin to cut sugar out of your diet, it begins to die off, which is a very good thing. Problem is, the yeast doesn’t want to die off, so your body then gets signaled to eat more sugar.
So how do we overcome them?
Dealing With Cravings
I’m no expert, but I’ll share with you the few ways I’ve always dealt with them.
- Removing all sweets from the home. Since I rarely buy sweets for home or bake sweets at home, this was quite easy for me.
- Have fresh veggies cut up and ready to snack on in the fridge. This helps me out immensely when I just want something right now!
- Have a glass of water. Sometimes when I think I’m hungry, I really just need to hydrate myself.
- Drink a hot beverage. I’ve been sipping on cups of tea sweetened with honey as well as Teechino sweetened with maple syrup. And the fact that it takes so long to sip, seems to melt them away.
- I’m making sure I eat some homemade sauerkraut each day as well as yogurt and/or kefir smoothies. These fermented and cultured products are a wonderful source of good bacteria to help me balance my gut flora.
- Take probiotics for the same reason as above.
- Consume more coconut oil! One of my favorite oils is also an anti fungal which helps get rid of the yeast. I’ve also heard that coconut oil can help because the medium chain fatty acid breaks down and is rapidly metabolized to glucose thus providing a source of the energy your sugar craving is telling you that you need.
- On the same note, garlic does the same thing, so I think I’ll have to whip up some more garlic herb butter.
- Drink a mix of honey and apple cider vinegar. For some reason this helps take away my “want” for sweets.
- I also made up some healthy, grain free, made with sugar brownies that were pretty good. (I’ll be posting the recipe tomorrow!)
So tell me, how are you doing going without sugar? I’m excited that there are so many of you trying your best to give up sugar with me! Have you been dealing with cravings? Or what about ‘detox’ type symptoms (headache, fatigue, etc.)?
Looking for more help with sugar?
The last couple of years now, we’ve done a sugar detox challenge after the holidays. This year I’ve made a lot of changes for you! Instead of weekly posts or emails, I’ve bundled it all up into a convenient, 24-page, FREE ebook. This way you can download it (for free) and keep it for future reference.
I used to be quite attached to sugar as I’m sure some of you are, but I had no idea how to reduce my consumption and then replace refined sugars with natural ones.
Whether you’re just starting on your journey to ‘real’ and natural foods, or you’ve been on this road for some time and just need a bit of encouragement, this ebook is for you!
As our Standard American Diet dictates, most of us are addicted to refined sugars. Not only do we dump them into our coffee, and inhale cookies, it’s hidden in almost every processed food we buy. And the problem is, the more we eat it, the more our body craves it.
Along with the 8 weekly challenges you’ll also find:
- My Story with Sugar
- What’s Wrong with Sugar
- Know Your Good Sugars
- Dealing with Cravings
- Links to recipes using natural sweeteners
To download this free ebook, just subscribe to either the daily or weekly email blog updates! If you’re already a subscriber, you’ll see a link at the bottom of your email. This link will take you to the page of free subscriber downloads. (also available are the “Naturally Balanced” and “Is Your Flour Wet?” ebooks!)
You can also sign up for the Naturally Knocked Up Community to receive support from others working to eat healthier and reduce their sugar intake.
Remember – you don’t have to sign up again if you already get our emails! Just check the bottom of your emails for a link to the subscriber downloads page.