From time to time it can be nice to cleanse your body from “toxic” things and reset. You’ve heard of juice cleanses, alcohol cleanses, and others but have you ever needed to take a break from sugar? There are a number of issues with sugar and how your body metabolizes it. The fact is, men are supposed to have a maximum of 9 teaspoons (or 32 grams) of sugar a day, and women should aim for 6 teaspoons (or 25 grams). Unfortunately, many people consume that much in one meal. As a result, people end up gaining a lot of weight and feeling more drowsy. So, here’s how to do a sugar cleanse, the right way:
Why Sugar Is Harmful
Sugar contains no essential nutrients and is bad for your health because it is difficult on your metabolism, rots your teeth, is harmful to your liver, leads to cardiovascular disease, causes insulin resistance and lead to diabetes…need I go on?
Since there is an excess of sugar in almost everything you eat, it can be hard to avoid consuming it. Some sugar is definitely better than other sugar, for example, natural sugar from fruit can be good for you in moderation, but processed sugars are harder on your body. If you want to avoid sugars empty calories there are things you can do to feel satisfied without putting yourself at risk for the negative effects. Unfortunately the more you consume sugar, the more your body craves it. Here are some tips for a successful sugar detox.
1. Cut it out of your diet wherever possible.
For example, instead of using a salad dressing that contains lots of high fructose corn syrup, opt for olive oil and vinegar or something similar. Try not to start your morning by adding it to your coffee, and replace soda with water w/ lemon. When you cut it out of simple everyday places you will crave it less throughout the day.
2. Replace processed sugar with natural sugar.
If you are looking for a sweet fix you can eliminate processed sugar with natural sugar and it will be much better for you. For example, on your oatmeal have blueberries or other fresh fruits instead of choosing flavored oatmeal like cinnamon brown sugar.
3. Eat frequently.
A lot of times people crave sugar because their blood sugar levels drop, but this does not mean you should reach for a Snickers bar. The more frequently you eat (three good meals and two snacks) the less you will find yourself reaching for a cookie or candy bar.
4. Take care of your body.
I cannot stress the importance of this enough. If you want to avoid sugar cravings, be sure to get enough sleep and exercise. This will greatly reduce cravings. If you sleep horribly and then start your morning with coffee (cream and sugar) and a donut or muffin then you might be setting yourself up for failure. When you get enough sleep, exercise, and eat clean food you’ll feel even better.
5. Avoid replacing sugar with artificial sweetener.
You may think that you’re doing yourself a favor by skipping the sugar and opting for Splenda in your coffee, or a diet coke instead of regular coke. Unfortunately, it is quite the opposite. Not only will you still crave sugar, but aspartame, acesulfame K, saccharin, neotame, and sucralose are all equally as harmful to your body.
The Take Away
Yes, you can do a cleanse, but chances are that you will feel a whole lot better without consuming excess sugar and you won’t want to give that up. You can still have sugar and avoid the health issues associated with it, but it is important to keep in mind that it should be consumed in moderation.