Friday, November 14, 2008

Sugar on the Brain

As a Nutritionist, one of the most common things I encounter is sugar addiction. It's no surprise. Sugar is everywhere and in everything. It's comfort. It's satisfying. It's tasty. It's highly addictive. We're brought up on the stuff and the problem only gets exacerbated as we age. 

I have a big problem with sugar. Oh, but I'm a sugar snob.  I don't eat those cheap chocolate 'candy' things or grocery store cakes.  No, I like to placate my sugar addiction by feeding it only the 'unrefined' sugars. So, let the organic, raw honey pour, sprinkle on the unrefined sweetener, simmer up the maple syrup. It's dark, organic chocolate for me. And baking? I'm a really good baker. I can take any recipe and translate it into an organic, wholesome treat (complete with those organic, "natural" sweeteners). It's all just feeding the addiction.

Sugars hold on us can only be loosened by the removal of it. Think I'm exaggerating? Studies have shown that sugar is more addictive than cocaine. Given the choice between cocaine and sugar, rats chose sugar. Even the cocaine addicted rats would switch to sugar over the cocaine when given a choice.

Sometime, in the complimentary circle of care we get a little sidetracked by trying to help people replace bad habits with 'better choices'. So, you're not drinking pop anymore, but you are drinking juice in soda water. What's the difference? It's used by your body in the same way. It's sugar. Pasta, rice, bread, doughnuts, juice, organic this or that... it's all still sugar and it keeps you on that blood sugar roller coaster. Diabetes, circulatory problems, decreased immunity, PMS, and heart disease have have all been linked to sugar consumption.

So, here I admit that while I may not be eating the worst of the worst, I'm still including foods in my diet that are keeping me gnawing at the bit for my next sweet fix. The result is a lack of energy, irritability, and the inability to wipe out the candida in my body for good. I've had enough.

It's day 5 of not eating 'sugar' (in all its forms) and it ain't pretty. As the candida dies off, I've been feeling the strong detoxifying effect it's having on my body. I'm tired, irritable, craving sweets, and generally feeling quite sorry for myself. I realize that I have to change my perspective and view this as a gift. I have the knowledge and ability to change my health. I can age with glowing health if I so choose. I can be vibrant and full of energy if I choose. I can have complete control over my body if I choose. I choose.

"The Sweet Tooth: Defeating the Little Rascal".  Great article with useful tips.


  1. whoo you're so right! I pride myself to eat a "paleo" diet but I am stocking 85% chocolate bars like a squirrel. My quest of the week has been to find a low-sugar, no-soy option and I realize with this article that it is how I am feeding my sugar crave. I guess it means that if I really want to do it right, I have to give up on chocolate. Godamn I really didn't want to think of it as an option.

  2. I hear you! Kudos, though, for even recognizing that you do it. Chocolate is a bad one for me. I find myself coming up with all sorts of crazy concoctions in order to get some down the hatch. The thing is, without some sort of sweetener, it's really unpalatable, isn't it?