How to get over your Sweet Danger – Sugar Addiction?
New research suggests excess sugar is deadlier than fat and more addictive than heroin.
It makes us fat,rots our teeth and has been linked to heart disease, yet sugar is found in just about everything we eat and in rapidly rising amounts. For many of us,sugar has become our drug of choice, helping us through the afternoon energy crash in the form of a handful of biscuits, and going without it makes us tired and grumpy.
Although fewer if us sweeten our tea or coffee, we are consuming more than ever due to the increase in `Stealth Sugar`, which is added to most processed foods, even savoury staples such as soups, sauces and bread. And while the risk of adding on fat has been well documented, sugar’s potential side effects have slipped below the radar.
It was back in the 1970s that medical establishment in the West first made a link between dietary fat and heart attacks, which resulted in fat being stripped out of many shop bought foods. To ensure food still tasted good,manufacturers responded by adding more sugar. Even the fruit and vegetables that way buy today, such as strawberries,apples and more recently broccoli, are bred to be sweeter than the varieties we ate in the past.
Now experts fear that in our obsession to cut out fat, we’ve become addicted to sugar.
They say, most of us are simply unaware of the amount of sugar in our daily diet – a Shocking 21 teaspoons per day according to some reports, when the recommended healthy limit is 10.
Why Sugar is ‘TOXIC’?
Although we need sugar to fuel our body and brain, large amounts have said to raise insulin levels, increasing the risk of diabetes. They body turns surplus sugar into fat and stores it around the vital organs,placing us at the risk of Liver and Heart Disease.
To top things off, studies have suggested that sugar could be as addictive as drugs and alcohol, which earlier this year led academics in international journal, Nature to call for sweet stuff to be taxed and restricted like booze and cigarettes.
Just can’t get Enough?
The official line has always been that while sugar is high in calories but it’s not addictive. Research suggests the opposite may be true. Scientists at Princeton University found that chemical released when we eat sugar travel along the same brain pathways that heroin does.And when we’re stressed or sad, the foods that can produce this feeling trigger powerful cravings, causing us to eat up to six times more than our normal intake.
Sugar stimulates the release of endorphin, which make you feel good, say nutritionists. Too much on a regular basis means you become deaf to your own natural endorphin, and `need` sugar to feel good.
In other words you become hooked and suffer withdrawal effects if you try to quit.
TRICKS to CUT DOWN Sugar Addiction
When first cutting down on sugar, you’ll probably experience headaches and feel grumpy and lethargic for a few days. After a week, you’ll start to feel better.
- Do it GraduallySet yourself reasonable targets based on halving your sugar intake each week until you have none. For example, if you normally have two sugars in your tea, have one in the first week and half a teaspoon in the second week.
- Eat a low Glycemic(GI) DietThis means that swapping white pasta and rice for brown, and eating wholemeal breads and wholegrain cereals such as bran flakes or porridge for breakfast.This will slow the speed at which sugar gets into your system, keeping blood sugar and energy levels constant, making you less likely to crave hat instant sugar hit.
- Eat little and OftenThis will keep your blood sugar levels steady so you won’t be hit by a sugar slump in the mid-morning or afternoon.
- Sleep EasyThe more tired you are, the more your body craves sugar to give you an energy boost. While you’re wearing yourself off sugar, aim to get seven to eight hours of shut-eye per night and avoid burning the candle at both ends.
Tags : Diet & Nutrition, Disease & Disorder, Healthy Eating, Preventative Healthcare, Diet plans, Fat and Fiber, Healthy Diet, Weight Loss, Weight Loss Tips, Sweet Addiction, Blood sugar, Blood sugar levels, dessert, Sugar Addiction, sugar substitutes