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Can You get Sugar Free in 28 Days?

This tid bit of information comes from the Dr. Oz Show which I watch everyday at 5:00 pm. 

My mom is a diabetic, so watching what she eats is very important in having a very strict diet which controls her diabetes on an everyday basis.  Foods with certain types of sugars and regular sugar are one especially high on the list of don’t do’s because of how her body reacts.  If you are one who has to find alternatives to the foods you eat because of their sugary contents, I hope this article from the Dr. Oz Show is beneficial to you.

“In this country, we’re facing all kinds of addictions – and beating them may be the #1 health challenge we face. Whether you’re addicted to nicotine, carbohydrates, salt or sugar, we all need a little help kicking the habit.

Try this 28-day challenge to reduce the amount of sugar you consume – you’ll feel healthier, and if you stick with it, you might just extend your life.”

When you eat sugar, it stimulates the release of dopamine into the nucleus accumbens, which makes you feel pleasure. The brain recognizes and likes this feeling and begins to crave more. It may startle you to learn that heroine, morphine and sugar all stimulate the same receptors in your brain.

It takes 28 days to detox from most addictive substances, and sugar – hidden in fast food, low-fat options and condiments – is certainly an addictive substance. On this plan, you’ll detox, eliminate hidden sugars and learn how to incorporate alternative sweeteners. 

The action plan to get started includes the following:

Week 1:  Detox  
Take a deep breath – you’re not going cold turkey. Cut back on the amount of sugar you add to foods (no more than a teaspoon!) Instead of buying and consuming processed foods that include sugar, try buying healthier alternatives – like whole wheat cereals – and adding 1 tsp. of sugar. This puts you in control of the amount of sugar you’re consuming.

Week 2:  Search for Hidden Sugars in Your Cabinets
Hunt down hidden sugars hiding in your cabinets and pantry. Throw away foods containing high amounts of added sugars, everything from tomato sauces to ketchup to peanut butter. Be especially wary of low-fat items as they often contain more sugar to make them taste better.

When purging your kitchen, be on the look out for these names:

  • Fructose
  • Maltose
  • Sorbitol
  • Evaporated cane juice
  • Syrups
  • Xylotol

Basically sugars ending in “ol” or “ose”

Week 3:  Use Alternative Sweetners
Instead of sugar, try using the following alternative sweeteners:

Stevia

  • Non-caloric herb from Paraguay
  • Very sweet with slight licorice taste
  • Found at health food, specialty and grocery stores with the dietary supplements – not with sweeteners.

Agave Nectar

  • Made from blue agave cactus grown in Mexico
  • High in calories, but you only need a very small amount
  • Found at vitamin stores.

Week 4:  Tricking Your Taste Buds  
Using fresh spices and herbs can trick taste buds into thinking you’re eating something sinfully sweet. Try adding cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, vanilla or allspice to your coffee, cereals and baked goods.

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