The holidays are a grand old time. Gathering around the fireplace and telling fond stories of your childhood, watching the little ones open their presents, eating all of those yummy cookies, cupcakes, and sweets. Wait a minute! Sure, the holidays are wonderful, but eating all that sugar simply can’t be good for your body.
When you eat good, healthy foods like whole grains and greens, the carbs they contain are broken down and gradually released into the bloodstream to be used as fuel for energy.
On the other hand, when you eat foods that are high in glucose (such as sugar and white flour), glucose and carbs are absorbed very quickly into your bloodstream, causing an extreme rise in your blood sugar levels, which triggers insulin release. In essence, ingesting refined sugar means that you’re consuming something that is completely void of nutrition; therefore, your body’s cells must “steal” from your body’s tissues to get the energy it needs.
So now that the holidays are over, it’s important to detoxify your body, especially if you’ve binged on sugar during the holidays. Follow these tips to get rid of that nasty refined sugar:
1. Get Rid of Sugar Temptations
By keeping foods containing refined sugar in your home, car, or office, you’re really testing your willpower. Think about it: Would a recovering alcoholic keep a bottle of liquor in his desk at work? Absolutely not! You must get rid of all sugar, so you’re never tempted to consume it.
2. Find a Good Substitute
Just because you’re cutting sugar out of your diet doesn’t mean that you aren’t allowed to enjoy sweet things. There are plenty of healthy things you can eat to get rid of those sugar cravings:
- Fruit (good ones to eat are bananas, strawberries, and watermelon)
- Use vanilla extract, almond extract, cinnamon, or raw honey to add sweetness to your foods or coffee
- Raw nuts and seeds are also great snack items that can help satisfy the munchies
3. Don’t Stress Out About “Added Sugar”
Most of the foods we eat have some added sugar. If you’re going on a sugar detox, don’t freak out when you see “added sugar” on a package or can. Instead, focus on cutting out those items that really do contain a lot of sugar: candy, chocolate, sweetened cereals, etc.
These are just three tips that can help you to take a few weeks (or more!) off from refined sugar. Now go out and do it!
-Dr. Edward F. Group III, DC, ND, DACBN, DABFM
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