A Word On Sugar Addiction

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A Word On Sugar Addiction
While out with friends at the weekend, I was asked my opinion on sugar. 

"So what are your thoughts on Sugar? Should we ban it?"

"No, I don't actually have a problem with it" I replied,

"Ok refined sugar, that's the bad stuff sin't it?"

"Well kind of, but again, I don't think sugar itself is the problem, it's the amount of it we eat" I said

"Yeah but we eat loads of it because we get addicted to it don't we..."

Well no, not really. 

If we were addicted to sugar, like people become addicted to cocaine, then if you experienced a sugar craving and I put a bag of sugar on the table in front of you, then you'd start spooning the bag into your mouth until the craving was satisfied.

When was the last time you started eating spoonfuls of sugar to alleviate a craving?

You don't. You go for doughnuts, cookies, chocolate bars or ice cream instead.

Why? 

Simple really... they taste so good! 

It's likely that the combination of sugar and fat make them taste amazing and thats what why we go for them so easily. Then that is how we overeat on sugar and calories and put on weight and experience all the negative health benefits that go along with this. 

From a young age we are conditioned to like (and often seek), that sweet taste that sugary foods provide. When you're little and have been well behaved, you get rewarded by being able to have some sweets or your favourite chocolate bar; fall over and hurt yourself, you get some ice cream for being brave.  Your brain remembers that a sweet taste = feeling good or making things feel better. This then stays with you through life. Now when things get tough at work, we have deadlines to hit, or things start worrying us, then we go in search of that comfort in sugary snacks. 

This is how it can seem that we are addicted to sugar.

So what can we do to break this 'addiction'?

Eating mostly lean meats, fishes and a wide variety of vegetables, washed down with plenty of water will help to make sure that you're feeling satisfied after meals, stabilising blood sugar and managing cravings on a daily basis. 

Accept that you like these sugary foods and that if unregulated, you could easily overeat on them (I know I have a cookie monster hidden inside me somewhere!?). Also accept that the nutrient dense foods I've just mentioned aren't likely to taste as good as chocolates or ice cream. So rather than banning these sugary treats, or attaching negative terms to them, just put a limit on when and how often you have them, so that you can satisfy cravings for them, maintain a calorie deficit and not trigger a binge.

Finally, make your own lower calorie dessert options. Greek yogurt, 2 tsp chocolate protein powder and frozen berries for example, or a couple of these protein pancakes can do the trick!

By keeping foods you like in your diet, you're far more likely to enjoy it, so you'll increase your chances of sticking to it, turning it into a long term lifestyle change, so you can get in great shape, feel good and stay that way! 

Drop me an email to info@coachrimmer.com to book a free 30 minute online nutrition and training strategy session and we can look at what habits you need to build to get in great shape this summer and still eat some of the foods you love!

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