Is Sugar-Zen Right for You?

THE REALITY OF A SUGAR ADDICTION

All of us have habits – some healthy, some not so healthy. Habits make positive or negative impacts on our everyday lives. Every choice affects the next choice, particularly when it comes to food. Sugar cravings keep growing as you give into them.

When dealing with a sugar addiction, the cravings are around the clock. You eat a candy bar to ease that urge, but it only returns with more fury and fire. At this point, sugar is in control. It affects everything from your physical wellbeing and weight to your mood and mannerisms.

WONDERING HOW TO STOP CRAVING SWEETS?

If you have a dysfunctional relationship with sugar, it is time for an intervention. Our Sugar-Zen program helps you overcome your sugar addiction. It introduces you to positive lifestyle habits that make you in control of your mind and body. If you don’t like how you feel or behave when around sugar, you can turn to the Sugar-Zen program to fix that.

Another component of the Sugar-Zen program is an optional capsule. Taking our vegetarian, time-release capsule is a way to stop craving sweets. They contain certain food-based ingredients shown to reduce those intense cravings when released in the small intestine, rather than the stomach. While the capsule is not required to achieve success within our program, it is a tool used to suppress your appetite naturally without stimulants or drugs.  

IS SUGAR-ZEN A GOOD FIT FOR YOU?

Sugar-Zen is right for anyone that wants to change his or her relationship with food and sugar. You can enjoy eating on our program. Food doesn’t have to be a negative component of your life, weighing you down mentally and physically. Our program helps you become aware and track your damaging habits. It also educates you on the harmful impact sugar has on your overall well being while training you to overcome your sugar addiction. Give Sugar-Zen a chance to change your life.

R is for Recording

HOW CRAVING SUGAR CONSUMES YOU

Being addicted to sugar takes over your mind and body. Without sugar, you feel moody, tired, and irritable. Eating a bag of candy only satisfies the immediate craving, but doesn’t stop the next one from coming. Craving sweets is an all-day, everyday problem for many people.

BRING YOUR SUGAR ADDICTION TO AN END

How do stop your sugar addiction? Facing the truth is the first step. Be honest with yourself. When craving sweets, do you always give in? Most often, you think you are regulating your sugar intake, but in all reality, you are eating a lot of sweets still.

Tracking your diet is one simple way to know exactly what you are putting in your body. Recording the food and sweets you consume helps you acknowledge your calorie intake instead of mindlessly eating. This awareness helps you avoid self-deception and sets a foundation for you to kick that sugar addiction.

People often avoid recording their diet. After all, it is hard to look back and see where you failed. But you also get to see where you successfully didn’t indulge in every craving. Sweets don’t have to control you. Look reality in the face. Track everything – the good, the bad, and the ugly.

START TRACKING AND STOP CRAVING SUGAR

As part of the Sugar-Zen program, it is crucial to record your food and sugar intake. Get a notebook or download an app. Choose whatever way will help you make this into a habit. Then, decide a time of a day to log the information and set a daily tracking alarm.

If you have a bad day, still track it! Sugar-Zen supports you along the way. Recording what you eat is an easy way to recognize your areas of weakness. Do not leave out details. As you begin your path to end craving sugar, remember honesty is the best policy.

“I Quit, Sugar.”

I quit sugar, quitting sugar detox

 

“I Quit, Sugar.”

 

Dear Sugar,

It pains me to say this, but I must break up with you. It’s time to quit because our relationship has become unhealthy. I turn to you for relief. Or when I’m sad. Or depressed. Or anxious. Or stressed. Heck, even when I’m bored. Sure, you’re intoxicating at first. Then I get sick of you. Just plain sick. And then I get sick without you. The initial intoxication becomes detoxifying. I go through withdrawals. So, I’m quitting, Sugar. Sure, I’ll feel listless, and my head will ache, at first. But I know that in the long run, it’s best. I think we can be friends. You know, meet for an occasional fresh fruit salad. Or frozen fruit dessert. But the constant cravings, the clandestine meetings, the painful regret…. I’m tired of all that. It simply has to stop. I know I’ll thank me later.

Most sincerely, most of the time,

Me

 

Taking a new approach to an old habit.

Perhaps writing an “I Quit, Sugar” letter personifying sugar seems odd. I prefer to call it a “creative approach” to an old problem. In this case, quitting sugar. Detox can be tough. That’s also how I know I’ve been eating too much sugar. After quitting, there are physical symptoms. I get listless. I get headaches. I get cranky.

 

I started thinking differently before I quit sugar.

As Einstein is supposed to have said, insanity is when we do the same thing over and over and expect different results. Most therapists agree that a change in behavior requires a change in thinking. When just the behavior changes, the change seldom lasts. I might say, “I quit sugar,” and even do it for a time. But, after quitting sugar, detox symptoms set in. Then I give in, feel bad about myself, and try quitting—all over again. I become convinced it’s my lack of willpower. However, willpower is a limited resource for all of us. So the cycle continues: indulging, shaming, stopping, craving, indulging, shaming, stopping, craving, and so on.

 

Willpower vs. the mesolimbic pathway, metabolism, hormones, peptides and plenty more.

Upon quitting sugar, detox symptoms are unavoidable. In a later blog I’ll summarize the biological shenanigans that wreak havoc when we declare “I quit sugar” and try to do so. Even when combined with all the determination of Joan of Arc, defeat happens. Willpower needs reinforcements.

Rather than beating oneself up for “not trying hard enough” or being “weak,” kindness should be the golden rule. When quitting sugar, detox and all the rest can be handled with new strategies. So, start by thinking differently. Don’t be mad at yourself for “not trying hard enough.” Be proud of yourself for trying in the first place.

 

Sugar-Zen offers a proven daily online support program that includes these strategies for quitting sugar, detoxing and helping you stop sugar cravings with a stimulant free, all-natural supplement

[Kim, I don’t know if there is somewhere to put this or even if we should add it, but here it be]

Laurie Campbell, M.S., received her Masters Degree in Mental Health Counseling at UNLV, with an emphasis in addictions, and has been a volunteer counselor for years. She is a former drug, alcohol and nicotine addict with two decades of sobriety. She also deals with Bipolar II and PTSD. She considers herself to be “sugar-dependent,” a milder form of addiction, and tends to eat sweets when things aren’t going well (and, admittedly, sometimes when they’re going just fine).

How Can I Stop Sugar Cravings, NOW!

How to stop sugar cravings

 

Here’s a familiar story for anyone who’s tried to cut back on sugar: One day you decide: no more sugar. For a couple of days, you’re on fire. You’re eating healthy; you’re feeling great. Then come the cravings. Maybe it’s chocolate, maybe ice cream, you crave some treat, and the need just won’t give up.

 

Why Sugar Cravings?

So why? When we have such good reasons and such firm determination to leave sugar behind, why do we just keep coming back? Figuring out how to stop sugar cravings means figuring out why they happen at all. The reaction we have to sugar is mostly chemical – as with many cravings and addictions, dopamine is the culprit here. When we eat sugary treats, our brain rewards us with a hit of dopamine. And since dopamine makes us feel good, sugar makes us feel good, for a short time, anyway.

 

Out of Sight, Out of Mind

Turns out, when we just see sweets, our brain starts to release dopamine. A glimpse of that ice cream you’ve got tucked away in the back of the freezer can get those chemicals going.  It might seem obvious, but it’s a simple little how-to: stop sugar cravings by avoiding even the sight of sweets. Even the anticipation of a sweet treat feels good when we’re trying to avoid sweets. We want to feel better, so we tend to eat whatever has triggered the craving in the first place.

 

Getting Your Fix

We crave that dopamine release for lots of reasons. When we’re depressed or feeling down, our brain wants that quick fix. Pause, and remember how to stop sugar cravings by doing other things that can lift our mood. Healthier foods—like fruit, milk, or yogurt—contain natural sugars that can give us a boost. Exercise releases endorphins that elevate mood. So does laughter. A hug or a cuddle (when available) can boost our mood as well. Getting the right amount of sleep can keep us from feeling like we need a boost in the first place.

 

There isn’t one simple, silver-bullet answer when it comes to quitting sugar. So, if you’re asking yourself how to stop sugar cravings, remember that there are a few steps you can take to accomplish your no-sugar goals.

  • Avoid seeing or thinking about sugary treats as much as you can.
  • Do something else to make yourself happy or content. Take a walk, talk to someone you love, watch a movie that makes you laugh.
  • Eat something healthier than a sugary treat.

Explore the possibilities for finding happiness outside junk food, and you just might find life is better without all that sugar.  

Sugar-Zen also offers an all-natural supplement to help you stop sugar cravings, as well proven daily online support program.

6 Steps to Cutting Out Sugar During Holidays

Let’s face it: Sugar is in EVERYTHING. Whether it is in an obvious form, or hidden under strange names, the sugar content in most foods makes it almost impossible to quit craving sweets. the good news is that learning how to stop eating sugar doesn’t have to be as hard as some people make it. Here are six tips to help eliminate sugar from your diet during the holidays, or any other time of year.

Skip the Salad Dressing and Opt for Olive Oil & Vinegar

This simple step can take your salad from an unhealthy mess back to the healthy dish it was meant to be. Salad dressings are full of added sugars or even high fructose corn syrup which will wreak havoc on your sweet cravings. Also, beware of any dressings marked ‘low fat’ as they typically are higher in sugar content than others.

Stay Hydrated

This doesn’t mean from all of those sugar laden holiday drinks out there. Instead, aim to drink one full 8-oz glass of water every hour to not only ward off sweet cravings, but also aid in your digestive process and increase your metabolism.

Make Your Own Coffee or Tea

Not only is making your own drinks at home cheaper than a daily trip to Starbucks, but you also have control over the amounts of added sugar by choosing what to put in it. If a completely sugar free lifestyle is your goal, go easy on sugars and creamers and try drinking it black.

Pack a Protein Rich Snack

Whether you are simply running an errand or going to work, packing your own protein filled snacks will not only keep you fuller for longer periods of time, but will also keep you from grabbing for the candy bar around 3 pm when you feel the slump coming on.

Plan Meals that do Not Revolve Around Pasta, Bread & White Potatoes

These items are digested the same as glucose, and therefore have similar after affects of sugar. To control binge eating, avoid any meal with these items in them.

Take BBQ Sauce, Ketchup & Mustard Off Your Shopping List

Most condiments are sugar laden and will quickly derail you from your goal of becoming sugar free.

If you are craving sweets more than usual during the holiday season, following these tips to cut back will help control the amount of added sugar you eat. If you are ready for a fully supportive program to help you overcome your sugar addiction, Sugar-Zen can help. Each of the four levels is designed to help sugar addicts at different points on their journey to becoming sugar free. Learn more about the power of Sugar-Zen, here.

Quit Sugar The Natural Way

We all know that excessive amounts of sugar are not good for the body, but learning how to stop eating sugar when the body is craving sweets is a tough challenge to overcome. Here are our best tips to stop eating sugar and beat your sweet cravings the natural way.

Avoid or Eliminate Processed Foods

Whether its refined sugar or artificial sugar substitutes, processed and prepackaged foods contain high amounts of sugar which has been shown to increase your cravings for sweets further. Staying away from aisles containing these foods during your grocery shopping trips is the first step to overcoming cravings naturally.

Drink Water

Oftentimes even hardcore athletes mistake thirst for hunger cravings and grab for something sweet. The next time you are craving sugar, grab a full glass of water before eating anything. Not only will it help you feel fuller, but the better hydrated your body is the more likely it is that your cravings for sweets will be reduced or eliminated.

Eliminate Emotional Eating

Most people are guilty of sitting on the couch, binge watching the latest series to hit Netflix while eating their favorite snack. Or, simply grabbing something sugary because they are stressed, bored, tired, anxious, in a bad mood, or some other emotion. Instead of eating your feelings, the trick is to think before stuffing your face. Ask yourself if you are eating an emotion, or because you are truly hungry, and if the answer is in fact due to hunger, grab for a protein packed snack to fill you up without the nasty side effects of sugar.

Exercise

While it has been hotly contested lately if exercise makes you more hungry, it has also been proven that taking a walk, run, yoga class, or other form of exercise will increase endorphins and make a person happier. The effects of exercise do not come with a sugar crash a few hours later.

Pack in Your Minerals

When a person is deficient of trace minerals including magnesium, chromium, vanadium, and zinc, their glucose levels are often thrown out of balance causing cravings for sweets to be more intense. Incorporating more leafy green vegetables, meats, cheeses and whole grains into your diet will help your body receive the minerals it needs while decreasing cravings for sweets.

By following these five tips, you will be able to put the days of craving sweets behind you, and wean yourself off sugar with a natural approach. For more help with quitting sugar in a natural way, learn more about Sugar-Zen, our all-natural, food-based capsules that help kick sugar cravings to the curb-for good.

What’s Exercise Have to do with Craving Sweets?

If after a major calorie burning workout session, you find yourself craving sweets, the findings of a recent study published in Time Magazine may surprise you.

Researchers who are singling out exercise as a deterrent to weight loss set out to follow kids who exercise the most, then eat back all the calories they just burned off, and then some. Kendrin Sonneville, Registered Dietitian at the Harvard School of Public Health responded to the study by saying that exercise does, in fact, increase your appetite. “The food-exercise equation is imbalanced. It may take an hour to burn 500 calories but only five minutes to eat them back,” she says.

If Exercise is Going to Make Me Hungrier, Why Do Some Recommend it As a Means to Overcoming Cravings For Sweets?

“In the short term, during or right after a workout, exercise may suppress hunger,” says Barry Braun, PhD, professor of kinesi­ology and director of the Energy Metabolism Laboratory at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. “But later that day, your hunger hormones can surge, making you want to eat. At the same time, your body’s satiety hormones — the ones that signal that you’re full — may decrease.”

One of the best ways to keep your hormones at regular levels and even out the hunger pains that come with exercise is to do it on a regular schedule. During exercise, the body releases endorphins, which are known to make a person happier. Indulging in sugary treats also releases endorphins, but come with often unpleasant side effects–think mood swings, crashes, fogginess, etc. However, if you choose to run outside instead of to the fridge the next time you are craving sweets, the benefits will be longer lasting, and soon you will be craving the exercise more than the sweets.

How to Stop Eating Sugar Post Workout

While these recent news stories are hotly contested in the fitness world, what they have missed is the role that exercise plays in keeping pounds off long term. Many studies have shown that people who keep off weight are the ones that are physically active. Beyond keeping a slim appearance, exercise helps blast belly fat, reduce the risk of high cholesterol, heart disease, diabetes and makes you an overall happier person.

However, if you find yourself reaching for the sugary snacks as a treat for working out, its time to take a step back and analyze where your hunger is coming from. Maybe you hit a milestone during your workout and think you owe yourself a treat. In this case, maximize your food intake with a minimum amount of calories on healthy, filling foods to not lose the good feelings of achievement during workout.

Staying properly hydrated also plays an important role in overcoming sugar cravings. Even the most hardcore athletes get their body signals mixed and mistake thirst for hunger pains. Drinking before, during and after workouts will keep you feeling full and away from the sugar aisle when leaving the gym.

 

5 Surprising Reasons You May Be Craving Sugar

Learning how to stop eating sugar and overcome the sweet tooth battles is not something that can be done overnight. In fact, craving sweets is usually cyclical and can happen after a bad day at the office, during peak hormonal changes for women, and even seasonally when the days become shorter. Here are 5 surprising reasons you may be craving sweets:

Stress

While it seems like a daily part of life, stress leads to less than optimal eating habits. When a person is feeling stressed, their cortisol levels increase and lessen their hunger pains. Once the stress is gone, the body produces more hunger hormones which can lead to late night snacking, overeating, weight gain and adrenal imbalance. Once this imbalance occurs, the person experiences extreme amounts of exhaustion and find the only way to make it through their day is by grabbing for their sugary snacks for the quick bursts of energy they provide. The cycle then repeats and sugar cravings increase. To reduce your stress levels, practice mindfulness and reach for healthier snacks that will give the real energy you need to get through tough times.

Hormones

During peak hormonal phases, women are prone to craving sweets. The serotonin and endorphin bursts provided by sugary treats give the body a natural high and temporarily improve moods.

Leptin & Insulin Resistance

When you have survived on a diet high in refined carbs for an extended period of time, your body is not able to access the glucose it needs to produce energy. The glucose remains in your blood stream instead of entering cells and signals the brain to increase insulin levels. When insulin levels are increased, so are cravings for sweets.

Leaky Gut Syndrome

This is becoming more and more common as the American diet includes more processed foods. Leaky gut occurs when partially digested food particles get into the blood stream through damaged digestive track linings. These particles are seen as foreign by the body and in response, the body launches an attack with antibodies. When these antibodies combine with the substance the body deemed foreign, it leads to immune complexes which can also cause intense cravings.

Lack of Positive Energy

Perhaps the most surprising of the five, a lack of positive energy in our lives impacts our biochemistry. When a person is exercising regularly, eating a balanced diet, feeling fulfilled in their career or family responsibilities, developing positive relationships and enjoying sunny days their serotonin and endorphin levels are high as well. It’s when happiness and positive energies are missing from one’s life that they are more likely to turn to sugar to fill the void.