Have you ever had the urge to eat something sweet, an intense longing for something containing sugar? Well, that should not come as a surprise since sugar is very addictive. Natasha Janicic-Kahric, an associate professor of medicine at Georgetown University Hospital states in an article on the Washington Post: “Many Americans eat about five times the amount of sugar they should consume.” These numbers can be chalked up to the addictive nature of sugar since the more you eat, the more you crave it. According to the WebMD: “Sugar fuels every cell in the brain. Your brain also sees sugar as a reward, which makes you keep wanting more of it. If you often eat a lot of sugar, you’re reinforcing that reward, which can make it tough to break the habit.”
Therefore, when you start the process of reducing the intake of sugar-containing foods, you will most likely go through an experience like when quitting smoking.
Although it might be a trying and painful process the good news is that it does not last long, and your body will ultimately thank you for it. Dr. Smith, the author of Blast the Sugar Out states: “In week two, most people talk about residual cravings. They’re beyond the withdrawal symptoms, but they’re missing certain types of sugary substances.”Dr. Smith goes on to explain that although it might seem difficult, after some time you will be able to stay off sugar if you fill your diet with some alternatives: “The truth is, if you’re able to gradually reduce your sugar intake and replace it with something else—like more fiber and more protein—you can stay off of it [indefinitely]”.
In addition to an addictive nature, one of the other biggest side-effects of sugar is the sugar rush. According to AZ central: “A sugar rush is caused first by the digestion of simple sugars. The foods go into the digestive tract and are quickly wicked away into the bloodstream. Rather than complex carbohydrates such as whole grain pasta, sweet potatoes or beans, which take longer to digest and give level sustained energy, simple sugars result in a massive spike in blood sugar. This spike results in the sugar rush or high that people look for when ingesting energy drinks or sugary foods.”
Therefore, many people think of sugar as an energy boost, but it leaves you feeling sluggish after the initial rush and also reduces the level of concentration.
So, the next time you have a craving for chocolate cake or an energy drink, think of the benefits of substituting it with a natural snack or fruits instead.
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