If you haven’t tried a sugar detox, you might consider it to improve your overall well-being. Did you realize some experts say sugar is eight times more addictive than cocaine? While some scientists disagree with this statement, it’s pretty evident that many people have become addicted to sugar. You can find it in almost any prepackaged or processed food item since it increases palatability.
In nature, fruits, grains, and some vegetables contain sugar in various amounts. However, what makes it highly addictive and hyper-palatable is when it’s extracted and isolated. Just like grapes become wine and poppies get processed into opium, sugar can take the form of delicious treats like donuts, candies, and ice cream.
When ingesting a pleasurable substance like wine, opium, or sugar, it activates the brain’s reward center. If you continue indulging in the substance, it increases the potential for abuse because of how quickly it’s absorbed into the bloodstream.
But if you have a sugar addiction, don’t criticize yourself or feel hopeless about the situation. If you believe in yourself, you can overcome anything with enough willpower and dedication.
Even though the modern food system is engineered to create disease, you can choose to live differently. It just requires undoing harmful habits and seeing food as energy rather than a source of pleasure. Below, we’ll give you some tips on how to detox from sugar naturally and regain your health.
How to Do a Sugar Detox To Reset the Mind and Body
1. Keep sweets like soda out of sight.
The easiest way to detox from sugar involves not buying any treats at the store. If you have access to sugary snacks and drinks, you can overindulge in them. Instead, purchase whole, fresh foods like fruits, vegetables, nuts, grains, seeds, and lean meats.
If you crave something sweet, you can eat an apple or banana rather than a candy bar. This may not seem appealing initially, but you’ll eventually start to feel more vibrant and healthy because of your positive habits.
Plus, studies show that sucrose and fructose, commonly found in sodas and sweetened snacks, can lead to obesity. That’s why it’s best to avoid consuming these food items while you’re trying to detox. Eating sweets occasionally won’t cause any harm, but the brain needs time to reset before you can safely enjoy them.
So, toss any problematic foods in the house, like ice cream, cookies, or chocolates, in the trash. It’s not easy to throw away delicious food, but your blood sugar and waistline will thank you.
2. Eat regular meals with plenty of fiber, healthy fat, and protein.
One primary reason people become addicted to sugar is that they don’t eat regular, filling meals. In the modern world, we’ve become addicted to convenience and have forgotten the sacredness of food and life itself. In ancient cultures, people ate their meals with gratitude and savored the food on their plates. They didn’t rush through a meal or get distracted halfway through by other responsibilities.
Plus, eating throughout the day helps stabilize blood sugar, which will help you overcome cravings. When you go for long periods without eating, it causes your blood sugar to drop dramatically. Then, you naturally reach for foods with the greatest energy density, like pizza or cake. When the body thinks it’s starving, it will always want foods that provide a quick burst of energy.
So, ensure you fill up on foods that promote balanced blood sugar and insulin levels during a detox. Some ideas of foods to include with your meals include:
- non-starchy vegetables like carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage
- whole grains like brown rice, quinoa, whole-grain pasta, and oatmeal
- foods with Omega-3 fatty acids, such as salmon, avocado, olive oil, nuts, and seeds
- high-protein foods such as chicken, turkey, tuna, soybeans, tofu, lentils, and beans
Whole grains have more fiber than refined carbohydrates like white rice, bread, and pasta, so you’ll feel more satisfied. Also, protein increases satiety by reducing the hunger hormone ghrelin levels, so you won’t feel tempted to eat sugary treats. Studies show that eating more protein improves dopamine functioning, which can help stave off cravings.
3. Practice mindfulness or meditation to detox from sugar.
How can mindfulness assist your efforts to detox from sugar? Being mindful has everything to do with our everyday habits and quality of life. When you act out of instinct, you’re running on autopilot and don’t consider the consequences of your actions. You’re simply performing tasks according to programmed patterns in your brain.
That’s where mindfulness is handy: it helps you slow down and pay attention to your actions. During a sugar detox, you must remain mindful of what triggers your cravings so you can learn to control them. When stressed and frazzled, you naturally want comfort to ease your mental pain. Many people find this relief in sugary treats, which explains why they’re called “comfort foods.”
So, increasing your awareness can help immensely during a sugar detox. You’ll start to notice the patterns of behavior that drive you to seek out rewards in the form of food. Then, you can begin building more beneficial habits to manage stress, such as exercising, meditating, or listening to calming music.
Also, try to look at unhealthy foods as a punishment for your mind and body since they cause damage in the long term. In the same way, think of nutritious foods as a reward because they enhance your health and provide clean energy to fuel your body. When you reframe foods in this light, you’ll naturally start craving healthier options when you notice how much better you feel.
Final Thoughts on Ways to Detox From Sugar
It’s not always a cakewalk to detox from sugar, no pun intended. It requires incredible dedication and perseverance to overcome food addiction because it initially causes pain. When you abstain from any deeply ingrained habit, you feel a sense of loss and may experience withdrawal symptoms.
But if you persist, you’ll notice that a sugar detox cleanses your body, mind, and spirit, helping you feel renewed eventually. You can succeed in detoxing sugar by not purchasing tempting foods, eating frequent, healthy meals, and practicing mindfulness. Here’s to your health and happiness!