Yeah, yeah, we all know this truth that added sugar causes mood swings, bad skin and weight gain. But how to kick the habit actually? Check out how Amanda did it!
Just think about the last time you came home from a long day at work: you just walk in the door, put your backpack down and take your coat off. I bet the next thing you do is go to your refrigerator to take a look at what it is you may have in there to eat and instead reaching for something of nutritional value, you shut the door and then open your freezer to summon two gentlemen named Ben and Jerry. I also want you to think about when you walked into work, and this may have even happened this morning: you make your way to the lounge and on the table is a box of a dozen donuts, a coffee cake, or Danishes, just to name a few. You tell yourself that you’re only going to have a few spoonfuls of ice cream or you that you guess it’s alright if you have just one donut, because it is only one right? Only one isn’t going to hurt. Contrary to popular belief, and the realization is on the rise, that one donut may taste good but make no mistake that one donut is doing more harm than good.
Danger! It's sugar here
Over consumption of sugar has become quite the epidemic with devastating effects including diabetes, heart disease, and high blood pressure. Eating any sort of food high in sugar causes blood sugar to spike which may leave you feeling dizzy and irritable and will have your body storing the extra sugar it doesn’t immediately use as fat. Sugar is also known to cause inflammation inside the body making it have to work harder to carry out normal metabolic processes that just leaves you feeling more tired than your mid-afternoon slump. It’s even more alarming that sugar has been found to be just as addictive and has the same effects as drug abuse: the more you consume, the more you crave. This is because sugar causes stimulation of the brain to release dopamine, a neurotransmitter that is released when something gives you pleasure. For many, including myself for a lot of my life, sugar was what gave me that pleasure.
How I combat my sugar craving
I have found this fact to be true reaching for my biggest weakness, ice cream, almost every night of the week to enjoy in front of the TV. I have also been guilty of excessive snacking while at work, eating that piece of cake that was brought in for a coworker’s birthday, and munching on munchkins faster than I can count. I would go to sleep at the end of a long day and wake up wondering why I was still feeling tired, feeling sluggish after drinking my morning cup of coffee and unable to concentrate due to a cloudy brain. Every day I would “treat” myself to some sort of sweet, delicious junk food and the more I ate it, the worse I felt.
When I had finally decided enough was enough, breaking the cycle was one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do and just like being addicted to drugs it had its withdrawal effects. For several days I suffered from headaches, sweats, constant hunger, shakes, and sometimes mild anxiety prompting me to live off of extra strength Tylenol. I also found great comfort in eating fruit since even though they are sweet and have a low glycemic index meaning they do not cause your blood sugar to spike. They come with real nutritional value and fiber and I must say granny smith apples pair very well with natural peanut butter. One of my favorite breakfast ideas is overnight oats and is perfect any person on the go like myself.
Here is my recipe of Overnight Oats that I think you will love too:
- ½ cup old fashioned oats
- 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
- ¼ cup sliced strawberries
- 1 tbsp natural peanut butter
- dash of cinnamon
Grab your favorite container and add oats, then add almond milk with cinnamon and stir. Top with strawberries and peanut butter and cover. Place in your refrigerator the night before and viola! Your breakfast is ready for you to grab on the way out door. The best part about this recipe is that every ingredient is interchangeable to your liking. Try exchanging different fruits or maybe substitute a different nut butter. You can even add chia seeds for extra fiber.
Still can't stop carving for sweet? Then include Ashwagandha extract to your diet. Ashwagandha has been known for centuries as a perfect remedy to treat various imbalances. This awesome herb helps to reduce stress by controlling the level of cortisol - a stress hormone. We often feel craving for something sweet while being stressed. Taking 2 capsules of Ashwagandha daily helps you to handle stress so you are less likely to turn to food to cope with it. Every serving contains 1300mg of pure Indian Ashwagandha herb root powder from the Himalayas (India), and 10 mg of black pepper extract for optimal absorption. Take it as a perfect restorative tonic to increase energy, control cholesterol levels, reduce inflammation, and improve health and longevity!