With the British Medical Association now calling for a 20% tax on sugary food and drinks, sugar has been recognised as the main culprit for Britain’s current obesity problem. Many experts advise that our bodies were not designed to take such a sugar overload and warn of serious health consequences such as hypertension, type 2 diabetes, heart disease and cancers. The Mary Poppins’ song, ‘A spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down’ could not be further off the mark.
Despite the numerous health campaigns encouraging us to reduce our intake, sugar still accounts for a significant amount of our daily diet intake and many of us are, quite simply, addicted to it and the consequences are alarming.
It is an unfortunate fact that sugar is a highly addictive substance. Studies using rats in laboratory controlled conditions showed that when both sugar and cocaine were offered as a choice, the rats chose the sugar as it gave them a more significant ‘high.’ Sugar stimulates neural pathways and sugar has been found to be habit-forming in people. Cravings similar to those induced by addictive drugs like cocaine and nicotine have been associated with sugar too.
Most of us are familiar with that ‘energy high’ we get when we eat a bar of chocolate or have a fizzy drink; there is a reason they are called ‘energy drinks’. Sadly, the energy high doesn’t last and the ‘coming down’ usually results in us feel even more sluggish and lethargic. After consuming sugar-loaded food and drink products, the initial boost in sugar levels in the blood is soon followed by a dramatic fall. As a consequence, the part of the brain controlling impulse is affected, leading to a reduction in self-control and a subsequent craving for more sugar laden foods and drink. It’s a vicious circle, the more sugar we have, the more we crave it.
So, how can we as individuals tackle our intake of sugar, eliminate those cravings and stop being a slave to sugar? Well, the good news is, it’s not all doom and gloom and it can be done.
A juice fast, though not strictly necessary, is a good way of clearing out any toxins and eliminating sugar from your system in preparation for your healthier intake of food and drink. It should be noted that it’s important to consult a health practitioner before undertaking any fast.
Now, let us deal with those cravings. Some ways you can help yourself are to:
- Go for a brisk walk or a run. Doing this will help you to distance yourself from the foods you are craving and the exercise will release serotonin, the ‘happiness hormone’ in your brain.
- Avoid drinks with high sugar content. They only serve to increase the craving for more sugar.
- Drink plenty of water. Dehydration intensifies sugar cravings. Eat small, healthy meals throughout the day to help regulate your blood sugar levels.
- Avoid processed foods, their high sugar content perpetuates the cravings.
- Eat vegetables and fruit which contain natural sugars (beware of eating too much fruit).
- Meditate to reduce your stress levels which in turn, will help to reduce cravings.
If you find that you need further help, a reputable hypnotherapist can help you to manage or even eliminate cravings altogether. Think of all the smokers who were addicted to nicotine who are now non-smokers thanks to the help of hypnotherapy. It’s the same principle.
Communicating with your subconscious, a hypnotherapist can guide you into creating a meaningful, more positive new mind programme, replacing the old behaviour of using sugar as a form of reward with a desire to make healthier choices. Hypnotherapy to address your sugar consumption is incredibly powerful and works whether your intention is to cut back or to eliminate sugar from your diet altogether.
After having just one session of hypnotherapy, individuals have reported that they feel much calmer overall and more in control of their food and drink intake. Foods containing natural sugars such as vegetables begin to taste much better and are more desirable.
Further hypnotherapy sessions can be added for individuals who want to manage their weight by addressing further any underlying causative issues.
In conclusion, the good news is that once you have cut down on your sugar intake or cut it out of your diet altogether, your blood sugar levels will become more evenly balanced. As your natural equilibrium returns, your body will become healthier and leaner. Those previous sluggish, lethargic feelings will be replaced by a renewed energy, enthusiasm and a zest for life.
You could release those shackles now and stop being a slave to sugar!
Please note: If you have been diagnosed with diabetes or any other relevant health condition please consult with a health professional before undertaking the above.