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Sugar: The Rollercoaster Ride & How To Get Off

While off the shelf food can be convenient, there is a growing awareness that a lack of nutrient filled fresh wholefoods coupled with mass consumption of refined sugars can have a major effect on our physical, mental and emotional health.

Fast food chains now appear in almost every suburb, inviting us to eat their cheap, highly processed foods loaded with dangerous fats, sugars and very little nutrition. What would have been a very occasional treat at Christmas or on other special days is now commonplace for many families.

But where has this lifestyle of so called ‘convenient food’ really got us?

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, the number of overweight Australians grew by 2 million in the last four years. The survey shows more than 138,000 children aged 2-4 are now obese & the number is growing.

So why this happening and how do we take control when temptation is on our doorstep?

REMEMBER: ‘Knowledge is Power’ AND Cravings are not a lack of will power!

If you want to take control, get off autopilot and strap yourself into the Captains seat, it is essential that you understand how your cravings are created and the physical, emotional, and mental response you have to both high and low blood sugar.

Whether excess sugar is sourced from all of the added sugars in your diet or from eating a high carbohydrate diet (or both), because your blood cannot tolerate too much sugar, your body naturally produces mass amounts of the hormone insulin that takes sugar from the blood and deposits it into the cells as excess fat.

Once the blood is cleared the rollercoaster ride takes you from a high to a low, leaving you with low blood sugar which can lead to being tired, irritable or even shaky. To bring blood sugar back up, your body sends your brain a chemical message to eat more sugar or carbohydrates and so the cravings begin. This process is a natural response to an unnatural environment.

Where once occasional whole fruit would have been our only source of sugar, now it is everywhere and many of us find ourselves on the blood sugar rollercoaster every single day. This is one of the main reasons why insulin resistance, lifestyle diabetes and obesity are on the rise.

Taking control involves being a conscious consumer. You need to choose to get off the rollercoaster so you can have steady blood sugar throughout the day. Some steps you can take include:

Reading the labels on products and buying those with the least amount of sugar in them (be wary of diet foods which are often high in sugar). Being prepared so you don’t snack on so called convenient foods when cravings occur. Eating a couple of pieces of fruit (not juice) per day instead of sweets. The natural fibres will slow down their digestion and prevent a spike in blood sugar. Find recipes for sugar free desserts that use natural sweeteners like Stevia (be wary of honey or agave which are high in fructose). See a Nutritionist or Dietician to get expert advice on how you can improve your diet. And just remember, you are sweet enough already!

Nicky McKimmie Mobile Personal Trainer Specialist Fitness Revolution