Are you addicted to sugar or is it just stress?

  • Are you addicted to sugar or is it just stress?

    BY Catherine Sissons | ON Thursday, 19 October 2017
  • An addiction is often associated with drugs or alcohol but if you look around there are so many types of addictions these days. If you have a dependency on something that is part of your daily habit it could be an addiction.

    Not all addictive behaviours are necessarily unhealthy activities or judged and these can include drinking water, exercise, working, mobile phone usage.  There are also the unhealthy ones that can be causing you to feel dissatisfied within yourself such as certain eating behaviours, alcohol, drugs, sugar and salt consumption and many others.

    It is the frequency, unawareness and the inability to have boundaries around any repetitive behaviour that can cause it to be addictive. Addiction can stem from boredom but ultimately it is because you have never been taught how to just be and meet your needs emotionally also thrown around as self love.

    If you were shown as a child that foods were 'treats' or a form of love then what can occur is a dependency on nostalgic foods when you are in a vulnerable state. Vulnerablity can occur from lack of sleep, poor hydration, lack of nourishment, stress and of course if you are not giving back to yourself in the form of relaxation.

    There is greater expectation these days to do more, be more and have more. It is creating pressure and stress psychologically, physically and also on your blood sugars. Stress engages your central nervous system to release adrenalin. It is the surge of adrenalin that causes your liver to release glucose (the most simplest form of sugar) to give you energy for fight or flight.

    This reaction then drops out and your blood sugars drop as a consequence. You then need another 'hit' of refined sugar to meet the need of your fight or flight cycle. This can happen in the background through what you eat. There are hidden sugars in foods but it is more important to have an awareness how stress in your lifestyle might be instigating your sugar dependency.

    Sugar is eight times more addictive than cocaine and lights up multi areas of the brain that creates a 'high'. However to cut out sugar completely is a challenge because it is everywhere and the brain, kidney and red blood cells use glucose as their primary fuel.

    The key is when you balance your blood sugar, nourish your lifestyle and learn how hydrate your body through the food that you eat then the spikes and troughs of the sugar cycle subside. You have more control over the portion of food you eat and also can make decisions around your eating from having awareness of what your body needs.

    This is the only way you will be able to eat guilt free permanently by learning what you like, why you like it and how to integrate it as part of your lifestyle in a simple yet healthy way. Once you have energy and are feeling better you will have a platform to make better decisions whether the food that might contain sugar is going to serve you in that moment or not.

    Sometimes it will and sometimes it will not. You will only know in that moment. If you are dependent on that food to help you feel good then there could be a chance you have a codependent relationship with eating.  You will only know if you need to understand this area once you have stabilised your blood sugars through the main meals that you eat and firstly nourish your lifestyle.  

    If you would like to know about your relationship with food and simplifying eating so that you are more satisfied and feel freedom to eat anything give me a call and I will get you started on your journey of eating guilt free. 

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