Heartbreak used to scream Oreos for me. Twist, dunk, lick that sucker and eat two rows of its brothers and sisters in the pack.
After having to deal with my jerk face boss, my body would scream KitKat and a Twix candy bars from the main lobby of the office building.
I’d stuff my face with any type of sugary treat when I worried and obsessed about anything from money, my future, am I ever going to meet anyone, I need to fit into those jeans again, where does he/she get off, God that was embarrassing today, I can’t believe I said that, I can’t believe he heard me fart and what-the-heck-am-I-going-to-do-with-my-life-type worry.
Sugar was my saviour…or so I thought.
You see when I discuss stress with my patients, they often think I mean, lifestyle stress. We rarely think of the types of stress we can change like nutritional stress. In fact what we do have control of what we put in our pie holes despite screaming gremlins in our bellies. Before we go there, let me break down a couple things you should know:
Not all sugars are created equal
In fact there are two kinds: simple and complex. Think about lovers: real love isn’t exactly a simple thing but rather, it’s complex. And that’s what you want to opt for when it comes to food. Complex sugars are ones you get from fruit and they break down slowly into the body. Simple sugars break down quickly in your body and just like a fleeting relationship; it has its peak and then crashes.
Sugar & stress
You may have heard about the hormone called, “cortisol”. While today many people grapple with trying to lower it, back in the day it proved to be quite useful. Bear chases you, cortisol kicks in and gives instant fuel in a flash. However today, with cortisol coursing through our veins, we begin to develop cravings for sugars pronto. This creates the nasty effect of wanting simple sugars (the bad boyfriend) and gaining that third butt cheek. So if you’re under a lot of lifestyle stress, a low-carb diet will do nothing for you until you get your stress under control. Because even if you stay away from sugar, your body can and will produce it on it’s own from breaking down muscle. Yep, while sitting in the car, having road rage, you could be making sugar all on your stressful own.
In my upcoming stress detox free interviews, I’m going to be bringing in Stephan Gardner, Emotional Specialist once again to help really address the lifestyle component. Without getting a hold of that, the dietary aspect won’t matter.
Controlling the sugar gremlin
As mentioned above, addressing the emotional route is key. Our thought patterns will clearly dictate our emotions that will lead to an action, which will lead to a result. It’s a huge part of my practice that at times people neglect because they feel diet alone can address their health concerns – particularly weight (not the case buttercup!).
However from a dietary perspective the one tip I will give you is to add unpasteurized apple cider vinegar into your world. One teaspoon to a tablespoon in a glass of water several times a day will help to regulate your blood sugar and ease those sugar cravings. And I love the theory behind this one: sweet according to Chinese Medical theory is the opposite of sour, thereby counteracting it’s counterpart. Pretty sweet eh? (Ya, ya...pun intended)
Now I realize this isn’t the easiest thing to give up because sugar can be classified as a drug since it’s practically 99% pure. But the rewards getting off of it (or at least switching to better, more complex forms) is paramount.
Stay tuned because next week I’ll be announcing the dates of my free sugar detox interviews where you'll learn about how to detox your stress via nutrition, emotional balance, fitness and spirituality. To stay informed, sign up to my newsletter and get in on the action. Together we will soon gather some perspective, get stress under control and make life that much sweeter.