I briefly touched on my recent decision to quit sugar earlier, but I wanted to go into it more indepthly.
Here’s some sweet facts . . .
The Lowdown On Sugar: There are four kinds of natural sugar – lactose, glucose, sucrose and fructose. Your body has the ability to process every type except fructose. Originally, our body was designed to process natural items such as proteins, grains, nuts, vegetables and fruits. Since the time when our bodies were designed, say even in the last 40 to 50 years, our portion sizes have grown exponentially and so has our desire for artificially created items. Now don’t get me wrong, I love a ho ho and a ding dong as much as the next girl, however, my arse seems to love them too. Milk has lactose in it which your body is capable of processing though some people experience intolerance to it. Table sugar is 50% glucose and 50% fructose. Your body is not designed with the ability to process fructose well and because of this does not register those calories and the fullness you should get from eating. This in turn makes you eat more to get “full”.
The Addiction: In the simplest form of the term, food can be an addiction. People comfort themselves with food. The garner pleasure and feel good with food. They get hankerings for certain tastes and because they’re body is acclimated, it requires more to become satisfied as time goes on. Dopamine is the hormone produced by receptors in your body that register pleasure. Drugs like heroine and meth inhibit dopamine receptors which is why addicts will forever chase their first high and need more and more to gain the same amount of pleasure. Studies have shown that fructose also can inhibit your dopamine receptors and therefore you require more and more to gain pleasure of it. Hence why you can eat a gazillion m&ms and not realize it. There is also thought behind the idea that it is not about will power and failing, but rather your own body chemistry and how it changes..
The Math: The FDA requires all food products to include the ingredients on packaging and serving size. It blew my mind to come across the concept that they are done in concepts of 100’s. I.E. 25g of sugar = 25%. As a whole, it is said you don’t want something that is beyond 6 to 8g sugar.
How It Applies To Me: Aside from the occasional graham cracker, I’m off sugar and have been for 4 days now. No sodas, no candies, no ice cream, etc etc. When I get the hankering for something sweet, I instead eat fruit, protein or fat (i.e. nuts, cheese, etc). Because your body was designed to process this and these things fill you up fast, a little goes a long way and you have no room for other things. I have already been off pastas for weeks upon weeks now so that isn’t a stretch and I pretty much only ate whole grains to begin with. I’ve also read potential that coming off sugar and resetting your body can help your hormones. To a woman who’s been melting in hot flashes and migraines the last two days, you wouldn’t believe how AMAZING that would be!
Thus far I’m feeling good. My face and body has slimmed down and I feel like I’m processing things better. I won’t lie, the cravings hit and when they do they suck. A lot. Thank God I can eat cheese! But I rationalize that it’s a trade-off. And are those things worth it compared to what I gain out of it. I’ll be sure to keep you posted on this adventure!