Here's How I Broke My Sugar Addiction in One Week
I dream in donuts. I can spot mints for miles. I deposit checks in person just for the lollipops. I'd say my sugar addiction is stage-five Buddy the Elf. 🙈 So after binge-watching the Fed Up documentary a few too many times last month, I finally decided enough is enough. No more Mr. Nice Guy: it's time to banish my sweet tooth once and for all! (Well, at least for a few days...)
So I ambitiously embarked on a 7-day sugar cleanse. I emptied my cabinets and secluded myself from society (lol, kidding). My rules were simple: no table sugar, no coconut sugar, no maple syrup, no honey, no natural sweeteners, and basically no fun of any kind. 🙄
But by some miracle, I got through it! Those seven days tested me mentally, physically, and spiritually, but when I came out on the other side, I truly felt born again. My tastebuds were reset, my tummy woes were no more, my energy levels were off the charts, and my wrinkles were gone! (haha, or maybe my outlook was just brighter...)
So now I'm sharing my 8 MUST-KNOW tips for anyone else who wants to get their sweet tooth under control:
1. Start off with a parasite cleanse.
Y'all aren't gonna wanna hear this: but 90% of humans will deal with parasites in their lifetime. 😱 And we're not talking those icky ticks you get from being one with nature. We're talking the even more devilish, internal monsters who want a free ride off of your nutrients. They're absolutely repulsive to think about (I can't even get through a five-min. Google search without running from my computer screen in fear), but it's important to consider the possibility that you could have some and they very well could be the reason for your incessant sugar cravings.
So to kick off your sugar cleanse with the odds in your favor, I suggest you banish those buggers. There are so many different parasite cleanses on the market, but my personal favorite is HealthForce Nutritionals' Scram. Just a friendly heads up: around the 3rd week of taking it, be sure to keep your head up and not look down in the toilet. 😉
2. Make a plan.
Take the time to sit down and pinpoint all of the culprits in your diet. Know where your sugar intake is coming from and where to make adjustments. For example, my vice wasn't candy or soda, but natural sweeteners like Stevia and it's much more evil cousin, aspartame.
Then once you've cornered your vices, clean out your cabinets. Unless you have some crazy strong willpower (meaning you probably don't even need a sugar cleanse in the first place), purging your house of sugar makes resisting temptation a whole lot easier.
3. Always read your labels.
Sugar is a sneaky lil' bugger. It's always trying to fool you with its different aliases, and just when you think you've backed it into a corner, it creeps back into the picture with one of it's deceiving cousins.
So when you're getting your Inspector Gadget on in the aisles of your local supermarket, beware of the following: 1) any crazy lookin' ingredient that ends in "ose", 2) "syrup" of any kind, and finally, 3) the not-so secretive sugars that can be spotted in plain sight, like date sugar, coconut sugar, brown rice sugar, etc.
4. Drink tea first thing in the morning.
In all fairness, I don't drink coffee. I never have. Therefore, it's been pretty easy for me to take on the habit of drinking herbal tea each morning. But for those of you who are espresso obsessed, I totally get why swapping out your morning java for some oolong might be a bit of hurdle. But here's why you gotta do it if you wanna nix your sweet tooth: teas are filling, naturally hydrating, and they lower the stress hormone cortisol, which helps improve your blood sugar regulation.
Some of my favorites? You can't go wrong with Mighty Leaf's Green Tea Tropical, Yogi's Honey Lavender Stress-Relief, and Teavana's Peach Tranquility (which recently went out of business... womp womp.)
Y'all already know this and I'm sure you don't need me to preach it to ya anymore. So drink your water folks. It fixes everything. Not to mention, dehydration can stir up cravings.
6. Switch to low-fructose fruits.
The good news: you don't have to say sayonara to all things sweet! Some fruits are still acceptable when consumed in reasonable quantities (no, you can't have a full carton of blueberries in one sitting). For example, low-fructose fruits, such as berries, kiwis, grapefruits, and pears, are gucci if you just space them evenly throughout the day.
High-fructose fruits, on the other hand, contain more than half their sugar in the form of fructose. And even though they still have fiber to help your body better absorb it, that's still a lot of excess sugar you don't need. So steer clear of pineapples, mangoes, grapes, watermelon, and bananas.
Also, it's best to eat fruits when paired with a protein or fat (for example, with cheese or nuts). This aids digestion, and in turn, supports weight loss.
7. Make friends with apple cider vinegar.
If you've actually ever tried a sip of apple cider vinegar before, you probably just shuddered at the thought. And if you haven't, let's just say it's nothing like a warm cup of one of the most acidic potions you can drink. But as tart and pungent as ACV might be, it's a pretty powerful tonic. And one of it's many superpowers just so happens to be nixing a sugar craving in the bud. So next time you hear Ben and Jerry calling your name, drink 1-2 tsp. of ACV in water instead. (A little tip: I usually like to reenact my college days and just take it in shot form 😜 ).
8. Swap soda for seltzer.
In a matter of only one week, I can proudly say I've tried every flavor of sparkling water that Harris Teeter has to offer. Mandarin, black cherry, strawberry guava, you name it. I've officially broke the bank on bubbly water. But only because it was my knight in shining armor when it came to breaking up with Diet Coke. I'm not kidding guys, if you want to kick soda to the curb, seltzer water is single-handedly the only tool you'll need. Forget everything else I just said above, these zero-calorie, zero-artificial-sweetener bubbles are the answer. (Sure I might have just converted my soda addiction into a seltzer addiction, but whatever works, right!?)