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I used to think sugar was fine… I knew it was bad for you, but I thought it was like any other vice… fine in moderation. Then I looked into doing a sugar detox.
It was only until I gave it up did it make all of the difference for my health and happiness.
As a trainer, I was taught, as if religious text itself, “calories in, calories out!”
That you can eat anything and lose weight as long as you’re “under your calories.”
Thankfully, I’ve been cleansed.
If you’re having trouble sticking to your diet, staying under your calories, or just getting motivated to lose weight… I know the problem…
Added sugar is the single worst ingredient in the modern diet.
Many modern fitness authorities would scoff at that statement.
Especially those pedaling the idea that you can, “Get a 6-pack while still eating yummy foods every day!”
This should smell like bullshit from a mile away, but people (myself included) want to believe it, so it sells…
Here’s the REAL truth: For people who are not training in extremes (gym rats/triathletes) or are VERY genetically gifted, sugar is public enemy #1.
And even those people would GREATLY benefit from cutting it out.
There is not a single substance on planet earth that will drive you to more frustration or headaches with weight loss and being healthy than SUGAR.
To drive this point home, I have created this list of 15 reasons to stop eating sugar + how to detox.
These points are all backed by evidence, and the studies have been cited.
1. Sugar is addictive.
How addictive is it?
Scientists ran a study on rats to examine how powerful certain addictions were. It turns out that with everything equal, rats PREFERRED more sugar over more cocaine (1).
Sugar is one of the most addictive substances on planet earth.
The reason you don’t think you’re addicted to it is that sugar in the diet is often masked…
2. Sugar is often HIDDEN.
I challenge you to stand up and walk to your fridge right now and pull out your top 3 favorite condiments.
Chances are that they are all LADEN with sugar.
There’s a reason non-fat yogurt tastes like heaven in a cup. It’s LOADED with sugar.
Companies know how addicting it is. This is why your favorite products contain hidden traces of it to keep you hooked to the products.
Sugar has been given DOZENS of different names to help hide them in our foods (2).
They’ve got you eating it without even realizing it.
3. Sugar makes you feel unsatisfied.
Sugar is like lighting a napalm bomb in your metabolism.
Added sugar is not satiating and will cause you to continue to feel hungry and unsatisfied after eating it (3).
Compare this to something like protein, which is so satiating that it causes a decrease in calories consumed by 441 daily.
It’s easy to understand why sugar is causing us to be fat.
4. Sugar makes you fat.
A popular study done in the 1970’s was the original culprit that convinced us that fat makes us fat. Everyone was running around preaching low fat for decades because of this.
Unfortunately, that study was based on correlation, and it was later PROVEN that sugar and overconsumption are the main problems (4).
And why is sugar sooooo easy to overconsume???
5. Sugar blocks your weight loss hormone – Leptin.
Leptin is the hormone in charge of regulating your body’s weight and energy.
When you have excess body weight, leptin contacts the brain and says, “Ok that’s enough food. I’m satisfied.”
It also delivers another important message: “Let’s get up and burn some of this excess weight off.”
In fact, people who are overweight or obese produce more leptin than those that are thinner.
The insulin spike from sugar stops leptin from getting to the brain and communicating these messages. Essentially, it blocks your natural weight loss hormone from doing its job!
But it’s not just hormones in the body that it effects. It’s also chemicals in the brain.
6. Sugar destroys your motivation.
Dopamine, the motivation neurochemical in your brain, gets a radically high hit every time you eat sugar.
This causes your brain to down-regulate dopamine production making it less likely you’ll feel joy or pleasure from eating healthy foods – like a salad.
This process DESTROYS your motivation and makes it even less likely you’ll lose weight.
And it affects your brain in more way than one…
7. Sugar causes brain fog and midday crashes.
Most of those midday crashes you feel are associated with the high spike in insulin you get from a sugary meal, which follows up with a big crash.
The brain does not need sugar…
Sugar has also been shown to contribute to cognitive decline and memory loss (5).
8. Sugar is ruining your teeth.
Nearly 100 years ago, a dentist named Weston A. Price was shocked by the rise in childhood cavities and the growing demand for orthodontic braces.
Wondering about the link between diet and tooth health, he quit his practice and traveled around the world with his wife, visiting tribes far removed from agricultural advancements and industrialized society and discovered nearly nonexistent levels of decay — even among groups of people not brushing their teeth.
Many studies have linked tooth decay with sugar consumption.
And it’s contributing to the problem with our kids…
9. There is a strong link between childhood obesity and sugar.
As the consumption of sugary drinks and treats for kids rises, so do the levels of childhood obesity (6>).
This should come as no surprise.
And if obesity wasn’t bad enough… There is that thing that they call “cancer…”
10. Sugar feeds cancer cells.
Sugar molecules are present in a large number of cancer cells.
A 2013 study at the University of Copenhagen showed that sugar aids the growth of malignant cells (7).
11. Sugar is ruining your skin.
A study by researchers at Unilever found a connection between low blood sugar levels and healthy, youthful skin. (8).
So if you’re interested in avoiding wrinkles, sagging skin, and breakouts, then turn your attention to cutting out sugar from your diet.
12. Sugar is the premier definition of empty calories.
It contains NO nutritional value.
No Minerals. No Vitamins. Just Calories.
This net 0 in your body also causes other problems…
13. Sugar is making your body sick.
Are you one of those people who seems to get sick all the time? Sugar could be one of the issues.
Sugar has been shown to suppress the immune system and cause your body to get sick more often (9).
That suppressed immune system will become very vulnerable when the winter rolls around or when doing activities like flying on a plane.
Try adding lemon water to your routine to take your detox to the next level. It’s loaded with health benefits and will help your body fight some of the usual detox symptoms when cutting out sugar.
14. Sugar is not a worthy reward.
Hopefully, I have been able to convince you that sugar is the major culprit that is causing the decline in health of our world.
The sad thing is that people are often told to reward themselves with a treat.
You’re not a dog. You don’t need to be rewarded with food.
The point is: Sugar is not a worthy reward for a gym session, a new achievement at work, or really anything…
Here’s the key…
15. Treat sugar like the addictive substance it is!
We all have a friend or family member in our lives who smokes. We still love them, but we would really rather them not smoke a known cancer-causing substance, right?
Would you ever tell that person: “You should do cigarettes in moderation.”
No. We always ask them, “When are you going to QUIT?”
So, on that note…
HOW do we quit!?
Well, no there is no miracle solution or magic potion to make the cravings go away.
But what you can do is eat the RIGHT foods that help lessen (and eventually beat) the cravings and get in the right mindset.
How to Get in the Right Mindset
We just covered this above.
Knowledge is power.
You have to believe that it’s good for you and that you’re doing the right thing in order to have the strength and discipline to stay away.
Make the decision about your HEALTH – whether it be your skin, weight, teeth, children, or all of the above. Don’t make it about your taste buds.
How to Eat a Healthy, Balanced Diet
We all secretly know this, but we just choose not to give it enough attention.
Healthy protein, healthy carbs, and healthy fats.
When your body is getting the right nutrients, it will naturally crave less of the bad stuff. This will become more evident the longer you stick with it.
Get a good protein powder, and have that between meals if you’re feeling cravings. Protein is the most satiating nutrient on the planet, and it will help keep you full between meals.
How to Build New Routines
If you have the power and the discipline to cut it cold turkey and not look back, more power to you! You’re in the top 1% right there.
But you’re probably reading this because it’s a little more difficult for you.
If you go too extreme at first, you’ll probably end up breaking sooner rather than later. That’s why crazy strict diets rarely work for people.
Instead, start building new habits – one routine at a time.
For instance, start with your morning cup of coffee. Cut the cream and the sugar and opt for unsweetened coconut or cashew milk or some coconut oil and cinnamon. Then start with lunch. Then work on dinner.
Drink peppermint tea or apple cider vinegar. But take it a step further… Add cinnamon and turmeric to your drink.
Or try adding a superfood powder!
So not only are you avoiding something TERRIBLE for your body, but you are replacing it with an INCREDIBLY HEALTHY choice. How empowering is that!?
Build new routines and habits to replace the old ones. Just take it one step at a time.
How to Phone a Friend
Try to get your partner, roommate, or friend on board with you. It’s much easier when someone else can hold you accountable.
When you’re feeling tempted, reach out to them for support.
How to Throw It Out
Throw ALL of the offenders in the trash. Don’t feel bad about wasted money. You’re harming yourself MORE by eating it first.
This can be more difficult when you have kids that eat bad foods but do your best to throw out whatever you can and get your kids on board with a healthier diet.
So when you’re feeling cravings coming on, you literally have to drive to the store to buy something. It will just make it that much easier for yourself to fight the cravings!
Now my question to you is…
“When are YOU going to quit?”
You’ll find that once you cut sugar and other refined substances out of your diet, the cravings will go away.
You’ll be left with freedom from cravings and a healthier and happier life.
If you want some help cutting back your sugar intake with a detox and are ready to build some long-term healthy eating habits, our 21-Day Fat Loss Challenge is the best place to start!
It starts out with a week-long detox designed to jumpstart your weight loss and bust through any plateaus!
People lose an average of 10-21 pounds in 21 days and absolutely love it! But even better than the weight loss is the feedback we get from people about how the program has taught them how to change their eating habits and find a diet that truly works for them in the long-term.
We have over 1,000 people in our private support group going through the Challenge together, and every day they are sharing experiences, results, motivation, and lots of recipes!
If you are ready to make some changes in your life, this is the ONLY place you should start. We will teach you exactly how to make the necessary changes in your diet and your lifestyle and how to keep them “beyond the diet.”
Leave a comment below if you enjoyed this article on reasons to stop eating sugar and how to detox or have any questions!