Eating sweets is a problem not only for children but also for adults, both women, and men. Involuntary reaching for a sweet bar, shortbread cookies, or a soft bun, unfortunately, delay the fulfillment of dreams of our perfect body. In addition, eating sweets every day worsens your health since it increases the risk of developing diabetes, insulin resistance, promotes overweight and obesity, and causes tooth decay. 

Worry not, though. Here are some great tips on how to stop eating sweets in large amounts and regain control of your cravings!

Sugar is a modern drug

Sugar can be incredibly addictive, which is why it’s so difficult to stop reaching for sweets. To better understand the mechanism of this addiction, you need to look at how sugar consumption affects the hormones secreted in the body, and specifically insulin.

Eating a sweet snack causes a sudden increase in blood sugar levels. To lower it, the pancreas produces insulin to lower blood glucose levels (insulin binds free glucose into glycogen and stores it “for later” in the liver, muscles, or the form of adipose tissue). The portion of the hormone is large because the blood sugar has also risen significantly. As a result of the action of insulin, blood sugar is lowered quickly and suddenly.

How does our brain react to this? It sends a message that it needs more sugar and re-intensifies the appetite for sweetness. It’s a vicious cycle that must be broken. Luckily, to effectively fight this mechanism, we do not have to completely abandon sweets in our diet and decide on a sugar detox.

What are the symptoms of sugar addiction?

Sugar addicts often sweeten their coffee and tea abundantly. In addition, they absorb large amounts of chocolate, candy, bars, cakes and cookies, and sweetened drinks. The following symptoms are noted in diabetics:

  • a strong desire for sweets – most often it’s so strong that they cannot deny themselves sweets
  • withdrawal symptoms when you quit eating sweets (e.g. headache, lack of energy, sleepiness)
  • determination to overcome the difficulties standing in the way of eating sweets (e.g. going to the store on a rainy evening only to buy your favorite chocolate, which was not at home)
  • postponing certain tasks to prioritize eating sweets
  • ignoring the negative health and even social consequences of excessive sugar consumption, which ultimately leads to loss of control over eating sweets

As you can see, the mechanism of action of sugar in our body can be compared to that of drugs or alcohol. Unfortunately, in the case of sugar, an additional problem is the fact that, unlike these substances, access to it is unlimited. It’s also used in excess in modern food.

So let’s find out about some tips that will help you overcome your cravings for sweets and regain control over your diet!

Find the source of the problem

The key aspect that will facilitate the fight against sugar addiction is finding the cause of the problem. We often reach for sweets when our mood is worse, due to boredom, stress, habit, laziness, at work, and as a consequence of using an improperly balanced diet.

To catch an individual problem, you can set up a notebook in which you will write down situations prompting you to reach for sweets for two weeks. When you want to eat another bar or a piece of cake, think about why you choose such a product and decide whether it’s really worth consuming.

Ritual of eating sweets

Although this method sounds mysterious, it’s not difficult to apply and, most importantly, really works. The goal is to focus on eating, not devour sweets in seconds. Buy a bar or a few chocolate candies, and when you return home, cut the sweet into thin slices or small pieces. The ritual is to eat each little piece slowly, focusing on the taste, texture, and smell of the food. It may turn out that after consuming a few small pieces, the craving for sweetness will pass! You will be surprised how powerful this technique is once you try it.

Seek other pleasures

If you eat sweets because of stress or to cheer yourself up, try to find other methods to release endorphins in your brain and reduce stress. It can be a few minutes just for you. Try drinking a good tea, making a facial mask, or a yoga session for a few minutes. Anything that will make you feel relaxed and in the moment.

Take a close look at your diet

The craving for sweets often occurs when the diet:

  • does not provide an adequate dose of energy
  • is based on products with a high glycemic index (such as light noodles, white bread, sweet yogurts, buns)
  • provides an insufficient amount of protein and fat

Replacing light grain products with their dark counterparts, adding a source of protein (cottage cheese, meat, fish, legumes) and fat (oil, peanut butter, or nuts) to each meal should help. As well as portions of vegetables and fruit, which will increase the volume of the dish and make it more satiating.

Regularly eat healthy, unprocessed meals

Healthy meal without added sugar

Eating irregularly causes a sudden drop in energy, which the body wants to replenish with sweetness. If you feel like Intermittent Fasting is not for you, it’s worth trying to get 4-5 properly balanced, regular meals a day. This means that each should contain a serving of:

  • complex carbohydrates contained in dark grain products, e.g. buckwheat or oat flakes
  • proteins that are found in meat, tofu, dairy products, and pods
  • healthy fat contained in avocados, vegetable oil, peanut butter, and nuts
  • vegetables and fruit in the amount of at least 100 grams

This will ensure that you don’t get those terrible hunger attacks throughout the day, and you won’t feel a sudden urge to grab an unhealthy snack.

Use healthy substitutes instead of sugar

It’s okay to like the sweet taste. However, since excess sugar in your diet is not conducive to your health, it’s worth looking for healthier alternatives. Instead of a sweet bar, you can eat your favorite fruit, homemade oatmeal cookies sweetened with banana, red bean brownies, or a few dried apricots or plums. There are plenty of inspirations for fit sweets on the web! Remember, though, that healthy sweets can also make you fat if you go too far!


See also: What is moringa – benefits of the tree of longevity


Don’t stock up on sweets

An important rule that will help you break the sweet habit is not to buy snacks in advance. In the moment of weakness, when there is a desire for sweets, and you can’t find them at home, it’s easier to overcome weakness than when the emergency drawer is filled to the brim with your favorite sweets. Better to stock up on fresh fruit, such as delicious kiwi or persimmon!

Don’t punish yourself for relapsing

Everyone needs to eat something sweet from time to time. So, if you manage to overcome the addiction and reach for your favorite bar once – do not punish yourself for it. Eat it with relish and go to the agenda. Common sense comes first! The key to everything in life is moderation and very few people actually manage to go “cold turkey” and cut sugar completely. As long as your diet is healthy most of the time, it’s fine to reach for some of your favorite sweets once in a while. 

Author

I'm Lucas, a 30-year-old guy from Poland who's passionate about natural ways to fight aging and staying healthy for as long as possible.