White sugar, and particularly high fructose corn syrup, have been making negative media rounds as of late. It comes as no surprise as sugar is added to virtually anything – condiments, dressings, processed foods and juices – and is a major contributing factor to metabolic disorders, obesity, inflammation and gut dysbiosis. Although it may seem unfathomable to give up sugar completely, easing into the process is key and you can begin by test-running it for at least two weeks to see how you feel without the constant influx of sweetness. Your taste buds will thank you as many low-sugar veterans can attest. Your sense of sweetness will become heightened after eliminating refined sugars, which means a little of the sweet stuff will take you a long way.
1. Get rid of all the unhealthy offenders in your kitchen. A clean kitchen is a smooth-running kitchen.
2. Get the grocery shopping done for the week. Planned preparation is key to set the upcoming days in motion.
3. Write down some sugar-free recipes you can try out each week. There are endless websites, books and ebooks you can look to for inspiration.
4. Fermented foods. Many fermented foods such as sauerkraut, kimchi, kefir and kombucha are quite sour and get the job done when it comes to cutting sweet cravings.
5. Protein and fat. Having a source of protein and fat at every meal or with snacks will keep you full and balance your blood sugar. Stock up on eggs, fish and shellfish, avocados, nuts, coconut oil, hummus and lean grass-fed meat.
6. Fiber. Fiber is great for creating a feeling of fullness and is wonderful consumed in the form of green leafy vegetables. You can also add flaxseed meal or psyllium husk to your dishes for an extra fiber boost.
7. Water. Often times when we are hungry it is actually our body’s way of telling us it is dehydrated. Try drinking water and if that doesn’t satisfy your hunger, then you know it’s time to eat something. Strive to drink half your body weight in pounds as liquid ounces daily.
8. Stevia. Although stevia is a great sugar substitute that doesn’t spike glucose levels, try to cut it out for the first week. If you are really craving something sweet, stevia is the best option and will keep you in check through the weeks ahead.