A lifetime commitment free of sugar is a monumental action. Doubtful this is possible, simple, white sugar, an acceptable, legal substance may be purchased, consumed, and found virtually anywhere. As a commodity it is readily available and inexpensive for food manufacturers. Money to be made, its addictive element attracts corporate giants. Like cigarettes, legally selling an addictive substance that increases sales is a capitalist’s dream. As an entrepreneur, I admire the economics and rate of return, yet as an individual with a moral compass, sugar’s unhealthy, negative nutritional implications, the greed and power the industry has over the food supply is daunting. Finally sugar addiction, its physical and psychological effects are debilitating making the decision to become sugar free simple, but not easy.
Eliminating simple sugar from dietary choices is a removal of the Cs: Cookies, candy, and sweetened carbohydrates. Keeping blood sugar levels stable enables maintaining an equilibrium that prevents an invasion of the substance. When consuming excessive carbohydrates, sugar levels spike, then drop, and cravings for sweetened foods relentlessly pursue action for more. The physiological effects trigger a reaction to replace deteriorating energy, an attempt at equilibrium as sugar levels crash, and an urge to circumvent the uncomfortable feeling of lethargy. Removal of simple sugars while balancing carbohydrate intake alleviates these roller coaster reactions, winning the fight against sugar addiction and enabling self restraint. As an addictive substance, refraining from consumption is necessary.
Utilization of sugar for emotional purposes is also powerful. Food as a numbing agent for emotional and physical discomfort is common. As children, rewarded, consoled, and barraged with sugary consumables solved problems and hosted festivities. Whether a skinned knee, a hurt feeling, or a celebratory holiday or experience, sweets commemorated or bandaged bruises, emotions, and events. The correlation between eating sweetened snacks with negative and positive emotions, cornerstoned sugar consumption into our psyche. To prevent simple sugar intake from food choices requires a replacement for the emotional outlet previously needed. Feeling emotions and physical pain fully without distraction by food, and celebrating the social aspects of connection with others minus simple sugar is transformative.
Remaining physically removed from simple sugar intake is the immediate action step to releasing the power of addictive behavior, while emotional response alternatives to sugary sweets is another imperative step. Feeling an incessant pull physically and mentally is overwhelming. Over time as a recovering sugar addict conquering the force eases. Questioning whether small amounts may be consumed periodically is a lesson in futility, though some refrain from pure abstinence. Utilizing protein to ease the addictive symptoms is one way to test whether small amounts of simply sugar can be consumed without grave reactions. For many even small exposure can lead to an all out binge. Recovering sugar addicts lead a slippery slope when venturing into any sugar territory. Sobriety for a lifetime may be the only solution.
Wonderful, Lisa! You hit the nail on the head, yet again! Yes, sugar is addictive! I need to remember that my body is “allergic” to it. Our bodies “call” for what we give it… When sugar is eliminated, our body moves on to call for greens and water and proteins. The “you are what you eat” campaign is so true!