A.D. asks from Albany, OR on April 18, 2009
I'm Addicted to Sugar
Has anyone out there successfully limited and/or quit eating sugary foods? I A. pretty much addicted. If it's in the house I'll eat it; if it's not in the house I'll go out and get it or bake something. (Trust me, I tried just not buying it.) I have PCOS and a history of pre-diabetes, so this is a real issue for me. I'm also about 20 pounds overweight. The thing about PCOS is that it makes you CRAVE sugar, so I just spiral in on myself. I've tried setting limits, but I keep sabotaging myself. I eat sugary foods at every meal--it's obscene! I don't drink sugary stuff, I prefer to chew it in candy, baked goods, etc. Is there some sort of cleansing product I could use? Has anyone quit cold turkey, and if so how long does it take for the severe cravings to subside? If I know there's an end in sight, I might be more motivated. I don't want my son to catch me in my bad habits. I had gestational diabetes when pregnant with him, and his risk of developing the disease is higher because of that. Please help!
1 mom found this helpful
So What Happened?™
Thank you everyone! You know, I thought I'd pretty much heard it all when it comes to diet, after all, I've been yo-yoing for years. But you all came up with some very good things to try. I like the idea of "delay, don't deny." I did the low-carb diet for 6 months a few years back, but I found that it wasn't conducive to a life-long plan. I'm thinking I should take up with Overeaters Anonymous again--they were very supportive to me before. I took all of your suggestions and compiled them into a word document, and I'm in the process of looking up supplements and the books you suggested. Thank you everyone, for sharing your advice and stories with me!
M.H. answers from Seattle on April 19, 2009
does treating the pcos with something like metformin help?
I find that raw baby carrots are a great way to satisfy my afternoon sugar/snack cravings.
Oh, also, i have found that if i eat a good, well-balance, but high protein meal early in the day cuts down on the cravings that i have later in the day.
M.O. answers from Portland on April 19, 2009
Most of the responses you get are going to be far better than mine but...if you don't know the answer maybe someone else will and could help us both out. Years ago, and I'm thinking 15ish or so, I read a paperback Atkins diet book. It was yellow??? In that book he named 2 supplements to take if you crave sugar which I do, but did more so back then. I remember taking them and it worked and when I was done with the bottle not ever buying them again. My sugar cravings are much better unless I nap and then I NEED sugar as soon as I wake up. I wish I could remember what they were but if I find them I will send another reply. Good luck.
B.C. answers from Seattle on April 19, 2009
I also have PCOS and pre-diabetes, and I've done a couple things that help. First, is keep a food diary and be honest in it. Track your meals, snacks, water and other beverages and every day add up the number of grams of carbs and sugars. See exactly what it is you are consuming since you probably don't exactly know.
Second, try to eat sugars/foods that have a lower glycemic index (fresh berries, whole grains, etc).
Third, wait to have any sugar until lunch time. Then it's not on a mostly empty stomach.
Another thing is - don't deny yourself something, just DELAY when you have it, and have 1/2 of what you would ordinarily have (and then if you can be happy with that, do half of that). Make cupcakes so you control portion size, or make mini-muffin sized cupcakes.
Do something active or keep your hands busy at times you would feel cravings (so you would be too busy to eat sugar).
If it still doesn't work, find out if your Dr. can refer you to a nutritional consultant or diabetes support group.
I tried the low carb/Atkins thing, but it was really hard to fix separate food for the rest of the family and couldn't really stick to it when we were on vacation. I haven't been able to lose weight - but I haven't gained either, but my tummy keeps getting fatter. It's very frustrating.
1 mom found this helpful
K.S. answers from Bellingham on April 19, 2009
I found that when I increase my B-complex, my sugar cravings almost completely disappear. I take a really good high quality B-complex, made from really pure food sources (not synthetic) and it works like a charm. Also it decreases my PMS symptoms too! I think every woman should know about the power of B!
If you're interested, I'll tell you what kind I have and how much I take.
1 mom found this helpful
K.M. answers from Seattle on April 19, 2009
I have had the same problem my whole life and have pretty much failed every diet out there because of the sugar-cravings. A couple things that have been successful for me:
Arbonne has the Figure 8 Weight Loss program. Their protien shakes are great to start your day out. The recommendation is to mix the powder with water. This can be used as a meal replacement. I actually add some extra calories but it tricks my sweet tooth and keeps me satisfied. I mix the vanilla shake with a cup of non-fat milk, a banana and frozen berries and blend up a smoothie. I'm very happy to start my day with a strawberry/banana shake but this one is high-protien, low carbohydrate ans tastes great. It keeps me satisfied as well as stabalizes my glycemic index so I'm not going through the day on a roller coaster (eating carbs for breakfast-energy level up-crashing as the sugar leaves my system-craving and eating more sugar-then continuing that cycle all day long). For lunch, I take another protein shake or eat a salad and then eat a healthy dinner. The shakes come in vanilla and chocolate and you can add a number of thigs to them to keep it exciting while maintaining a healthy meal replacement. The line also has a fiber supplement that is tastless and odorless that can be added to anything. I put mine in my morning shake. There are also protien chews that can be used to satisfy your sweet tooth during the day.
In regards to a cleansing product, Arbonne has the SeaSource Detox Spa. While the majority of the line is set up to maximize your skin's ability to detox, there is a 7-day oral detox that can be taken once a month. While the recommendation is you eat healthy during the cleanse, you CAN eat. It does not require fastig.
Also, if you're interested in an acai berry supplement, Monavie has a great product available.
L.C. answers from Seattle on April 19, 2009
Hi A. D,
I, too, A. addicted to sugar and stuggled with it my whole life. The one and only cure for me was acupuncture! The treatment completely cured me of my cravings and I now have full control over when and how much sugar I eat. There are no side effects like quitting cold turkey, no headaches, mood swings, nothing! My acupuncturist is located in Ballard, but she's worth the drive. The website is www.sujinacupunctureherb.com.
Best of luck to you!
S.S. answers from Seattle on April 19, 2009
I quit sugar for 10 years as I'm hypoglycemic and not supposed to eat it as it could lead to diabetes later on in life... I A. currently pregnant but intend to kick the habit again afterward. I can tell you it's really, really difficult. But one of the things that helped me was to get a load of sugar-free candies/chocolates and cut back from there. It takes about two weeks for your body to stop craving the sugar, so it will be hard at first, but if you have the sugar-free stuff it's easier. Also, cut juices down and only drink ones that are 100 per cent juice (a lot of them have glucose-fructose added) and that helps, too. Try to stay away from simple carbs such as white bread, rice, etc. while you're trying to get rid of the cravings as well. Switch to whole-wheat pasta, bread, etc. I quit cold turkey, but with the aid of sugar-free chocolate. This helped and after a few days I even stoppped eating that as it just doesn't have the same effect as sugar, though you fool your taste buds and cravings into thinking it does! Baskin and Robbins have sugar-free ice cream, too, if that's your thing. But there are lots of sugar-free alternatives out there, albeit not as tasty, but helpful when you really, really need something sweet and your body won't get addicted to them. Good luck!!
A.B. answers from Portland on April 19, 2009
Have you tried using a sugar substitute like Stevia or Splenda?
A.F. answers from Seattle on April 19, 2009
I had the same problem, complicated by hypoglycemia and hypothyroid (not a great combo). I learned about shook called "dr. Gundrys diet evolution" and have been following his suggestions pretty much to the letter. I still allow myself a bit if dark chocolate each day, but for the most part I neither crave nor want sugar or even white carbs during the day. It's a solution that has worked for me. Good luck!
C.S. answers from Seattle on April 19, 2009
I found The Diet Cure by Julia Ross very helpful for my sugar addiction. She discusses why the body has food cravings and recommends supplements to help. I was a sugar addict, I craved things like jelly beans and horrible, sugary candy and pop. After reading her book and taking l-glutamine, I realized that my brain was craving the sugar and not necessarily my body. I no longer crave sugar and A. even a bit repelled by it at times.