How to Kick the Sugar Habit

Even when you know that too much of sugar is not good for your health, it sometimes becomes difficult to break the habit. Yes, it tastes so good, but you have to understand that it can wreak havoc on your body. The FDA has reported that Americans get more than 16% of their daily calories from sugar, which is quite unhealthy. You need to realize that sugar is only providing you with empty calories, so it is important to learn how to kick the sugar habit to prevent issues like type-2 diabetes, obesity, tooth decay, and hypertension.

Tips to Kick the Sugar Habit Immediately

It is true that kicking the sugar habit seems quite daunting, but you just need to pay attention to a few simple things to lower your chances of going overboard with your intake of sugar.

1. Keep It Out of Your Sight

Do not let that bowl of sugar or candy jar stare right at you. You should make it difficult to get sugar in your home, as keeping it out of sight will greatly help deal with your sugar cravings. Leave your candy jar in the room down the hall, put those cookies on top of your fridge, and do everything you can to make it hard to find sugar in your home.

2. Know How Much Sugar You Consume

Keeping track of the total amount of sugar you consume daily can help you determine how to bring that amount under control. Instead of counting grams, you may want to keep track of how many teaspoons of sugar you consume. A teaspoon of sugar provides you with 4g of sugar – a 12oz can of coke offers 39g of sugar or almost 10 teaspoon of sugar. You should ensure that you do not get more than 12.5 teaspoons of sugar a day or else you will start experiencing its negative effects.

3. Opt for Naturally Sweet Food

Wondering how to kick the sugar habit? Instead of going for added sugar, you should opt for naturally sweet food options, including berries, raisins, dates, and other sweet whole foods. These foods help satisfy your cravings for sugar, but the good thing is that they also provide you with fiber and other essential nutrients. Those fruits are always better than a candy bar that only contains empty calories.

4. Pay Attention to the Labels

Never buy anything unless you have checked the labels carefully. Know how much sugar you are going to get by opting for a particular food item. Anything that contains 28g of sugar actually provides you with 7 teaspoons of sugar, which is a lot. Therefore, read the labels and opt for low-sugar alternatives.

5. Control Your Emotions

Many people consume sugar not because they love the taste, but they take those sweet treats as comfort food. It means they grab those treats when they feel stressed, tired, angry, frustrated, or even depressed. Those sweet treats lead to an energy surge in your body that temporarily makes you feel better. Therefore, it is important to control your emotions and ask yourself if you want to eat something sweet just because you are feeling bad emotionally. When your sugar habit has something to do with 'emotional eating', it is important to learn how to manage stress in other ways.

6. Go for Healthy Options

To learn how to kick the sugar habit, you have to do some preparation. If you grab those sugar treats when you feel hungry, it is better to prepare some healthy snacks that you could eat in place of sugar. You can simply keep a few hard-boiled eggs around or simply chop up some celery and carrots. Keeping a pitcher of unsweetened tea handy may also help.

7. Include Fermented Foods in Your Diet

The fermented foods are nutritional powerhouses and work amazingly well to curb your sugar cravings. By including fermented foods like Kimchi, tempeh, miso, kefir, kombucha, sauerkraut, and fermented pickles in your diet, you can limit your dependence on sugar. Eating these foods with sugar treats will limit the negative effects of sugar because the beneficial microflora uses the sugar as its food. You can also opt for fermented condiments such as chutneys and fermented yogurt to enjoy amazing health benefits.

8. Work on Your Taste Buds

By retraining your taste buds, you can really help understand how to kick the sugar habit. If you just love the sweetness of sugar, you can go on a detox program for a short while. You have to avoid all sugar for a short period, which will help change the neural pathways in your brain that become active when you eat sugar.

It is better to exclude added sugar from your diet for a while, but you can make small changes at a time if it seems difficult to go completely off sugar. You can start by making small changes like using half a teaspoon in your tea instead of 1 teaspoon. If you love to have two cookies after dinner, have only one. Keep reducing the overall amount of sugar in your diet and you will eventually be able to have your sugar habit under control.

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