I have a wicked bad sugar addiction. I honestly don't know if I could go a day without it. I also know that sugar packs on the pounds. I am 55 years old and have been thinking about my health alot lately. What I would like to know is if anyone has any tips on how to make it easier to taper off using sugar and not have horrible cravings.
I totally understand. I'm convinced that eating sweets causes my body to release a bunch of feel-good hormones. If there are sugary treats in my house, they will be gone in no time. Yes, you can use your diet to curb those cravings. Here's what I do:
Plan my diet out for the week, foods include fruit, vegetables, lean meat, fish, whole grains, nuts/seeds, and low-fat dairy. Nothing sugary. No white potatoes, white rice, pasta, or white bread.
Don't allow sugary foods into your house.
Chew sugar-free gum.
Foods that help satisfy my sugar cravings:
low-calorie popsicles and fudgesicles
100 calorie pack of coco-roasted almonds
3 pieces of sugar-free dark chocolate
no sugar added hot chocolate (for colder months)
Sugar addiction can lead you to various problems such as obesity, diabetes, depression, arthritis, etc. You can recover from your addiction by avoiding junk food and unhealthy processed food. Substitute sugar with healthy alternatives like stevia which will help to control your sugar cravings.
I'm not a fan of restrictive diets - ie: Atkins, Paleo, etc - they just don't work in the long term because they aren't sustainable. That said, the only way I've found I've been able to completely break my sugar addiction is to completely cut carbs out of my diet (even fruit) for two weeks. Then, I gradually add good carbs back in with a couple servings a day - fruit, whole grains, etc. After two weeks, my cravings for sweets are completely gone.