5 Steps To Giving Up Sugar


Two years ago, I gave up sugar. The reasons were obvious; despite being fit and active, I couldn’t lose weight. My skin was ageing; aside from fine lines, I had acne and pigmentation. My moods were all over the place, I was happy and bright one moment, and down in the dumps and tearful the next. I’d also got into a pattern of waking in the middle of the night, tired and wired.
So I stopped eating sugar. Within weeks, I had lost weight and I was sleeping better so I felt energised. Without the help of any costly facial regimes, my skin just sorted itself out. For the first time in a long while I felt… well, well. I’d advise you do it for 10 days, and see how great you feel.
1) Identify your sugars
Although I thought I ate healthily, my food was high sugar: from my granola, fruit salad and orange juice breakfast to my stir fry sauce. Sugars are in so many foods, whether natural or added. Decide how far you want cut back. The key is to understand labels. Anything that ends in ‘ose’ is a sugar, anything with ‘syrup’ in it’s name, or fruit juice concentrate and many more.
2) Chuck it out
Throw away all jars of honey and pots of agave syrup (both are little better than the white granulated kind). Bin jar sauces, biscuits, jams, chocolate, cordials, flavoured yoghurts, ice creams, processed foods (most have sugar added to them) – and anything sweet.
3) Stock up
Buy nuts, full-fat plain yoghurts, cinnamon and fresh vegetables, organic lean meat and fish. Buy a good quality olive oil, some coconut oil and prepare to cook ‘clean’ – ie fresh wholesome food that’s not going to be drowned in sauces or marinades.
4) Be prepared
Eating more protein will help you overcome sugar cravings. Happily, nuts – a great form of it – are an easy snack to carry around. Also, for when hunger strikes, carry some chopped up veggies in a small Tupperware container, or one of those handy small packs of oatcakes.
5) Lunches at work
The easiest thing to do take an extra portion of dinner as a packed lunch. On the hop, in Pret A Manger, for example, you’d look for a salad with dressing on the side or a soup with a little protein pots – eggs with spinach or crayfish with quinoa. As a general rule, avoid sushi, sandwiches and anything processed.
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