“If it’s popped, puffed, flaked, floured, shredded, or instant, it’s been refined.” Radha Gleis, PhD, MEd, CCN
Naturally occurring sweet foods, such as, fruits and honey, do not overstimulate the palate or lead to cravings as today’s refined sweet foods do. Knowing what happens inside your body when you eat sugar and carbs – the science behind the cravings, sugar crashes, and other ill effects – should be a great source of motivation to help you kick your sugar habit to the curb.
Our ancestors consumed far fewer calories in the form of sugar than people do in our modern refined-sugar-and-carb world today. Added sugars didn’t exist then, only naturally sweet foods did. 80% of the food in our grocery store today didn’t exist either. That means we have created 80% of our foods in a laboratory. I will discuss processed foods in another segment. For now, we will get back to why we are wired to love and seek out sweet foods. If sugar is so bad for us, then why do we want and crave sweet treats?
One word: Dopamine. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter (a chemical messenger that delivers signals to and from the brain) that helps control feelings of reward and pleasure. It is released for many health reasons, including physical touch and exercise. Dopamine is also released in response to the consumption of certain substances, including caffeine, narcotics, and sugar.
The dopamine response you get from eating sugar sends signals throughout the body that encourages you to continue to seek that pleasurable feeling. This wouldn’t be a bad thing if the sugar you were eating was nutrient dense, like berries. If your received this pleasure only from eating sugar where it naturally occurs, in fruits and honey, you would likely be receive enough nutrition from these foods to calm the desire for more because they work naturally with the body. What happens today, isn’t so simple. Our modern, refined forms of sugar trigger the release of dopamine, but they also rob your nutrients which leaves you with the constant desire for more sugar.
Our food choices impact blood sugar-regulating hormones: insulin and glucagon, but they also affect other hormones as well. From health challenges like acne, hypothyroidism, PCOS, low testosterone, fertility complications to mood swings, painful periods, or menopause, getting blood sugar regulation under control is the first step to better health.
Hormonal imbalances are all interconnected and anything that tips you out of balance in one place can cascade into more complex problems elsewhere. You can see how important it is to reset your body – and your lifestyle, to not only
- free yourself from cravings
- increase energy
- improve sleep and mood
You will also improve hormone function and lower inflammation in the body. Essentially, inflammation is at the root of just about every disease imaginable. Sugar consumption plays a role in chronic inflammation in two ways:
- Depleted nutrients from over consumption of bad carbs leads to a chronic state of stress in the body.
- Chronically high and/or low blood sugar (unstable blood sugar regulation) – what you build when consistently ingesting too many bad carbs/sugar and riding the blood sugar roller coaster – creates a chronic state of stress for the body.
The Good news! A sugar detox ( the process of removing toxins from the body) is a simple yet effective way to rid your body of the damages and inflammation that has been created. The positive effects of joining a sugar detox program are far-reaching. You will be amazed at the changes you will experience in your emotional and physical health in as little as three weeks.
My sugar detox program – The Sweet Escape – is straight forward and clear cut. I make it easy to know how to prepare and what to expect. It is not as simple as just removing sugar from your diet cold turkey. You will receive a seven day preparation guideline to make sure you are ready to start on day one.
What is The Sweet Escape?
The Sweet Escape is a 21 Day Sugar Detox food based program designed to reduce and eliminate your cravings for sugar and carbs. This three week program focuses on quality proteins, healthy fats, and good carbs. You will change not only the foods you eat but also your habits around foods. By changing the foods you eat every day, you begin to gain a new understanding of how food works in your body and just how much nutrition affects your entire life.
Beyond helping you bust sugar and carb cravings, this program will serve as a nutritional jump-start to a healthier lifestyle. If you are ready to commit to yourself, to choose foods that will help your body support your goals and feel better, then this is the program for you. If you know that the answer to your cravings isn’t a magic pill, potion, or a hand full of supplements that will miraculously take away your sugar cravings, then this program is for you.
In fact, if you have read this far, then you are in the right place! Let’s move forward and get you off of the sugar roller coaster and on to The Sweet Escape.
First, we will look at the basic science of sugar and how your body processes carbohydrates. Then, I will walk you through the 7 day preparation phase and what to expect day-by-day in the program. You will get tips on
- finding hidden sugars
- which fats to eat and which fats to avoid
- dining out guidelines
- and tips on how to navigate after the 21 days
You will also be provided a short quiz to determine the direction that is right for you and point us to any modifications that we need to make for your lifestyle. I am here to help you every step of the way.
What are you waiting for? It is time to reclaim your freedom from food!