Recently inside The Healthy Mama Hive I had some Healthy Mamas, (as I like to call them) talk about how they had fallen back into the “sugar trap” and were dealing with sugar cravings so I did a live about some of the things we have to think about when the sugar monster rears it's head. And this is very important. Sugar consumption is one of the most detrimental things you can do to your health, and most people eat way too much sugar. Here are the tips I gave my healthy mamas that I thought would help you, too:
1. First up, you must balance your blood sugar. If you have imbalanced blood sugar this will exacerbate your cravings. How do you balance your blood sugar? Firstly, eat a healthy fat, some protein and some fibre at every meal and snack. So think an apple with some nut butter, some coconut yoghurt with collagen peptides and berries, etc.
2. Secondly, you have to sort out any insulin issues you may have, which could also be driving sugar cravings. Insulin is our “fat storage hormone” and will cause you to hold onto stubborn weight. To make sure insulin is balanced you have to do step one above. Also, avoid insulin-stimulating foods such as dairy and carbs, (but do NOT stop eating vegetables or a small amount of fruit, preferably berries). You may also want to try some inositol, which can help improve insulin sensitivity. Magnesium can also be beneficial to increase insulin sensitivity in fact, a deficiency can cause insulin resistance. You want to exercise and get enough sleep too to keep your insulin levels steady.
3. GET SUGAR OUT OF THE HOUSE! This is such a simple tip but so many women I work with tell me they have cookies or ice cream in their kitchen. What the?! How are you supposed to ditch the sugar habit if you have it staring you in the face?! Get it out of the house and make your life easier. Help yourself out! You're only human after all.
4. Keep your hands busy at night, which is when a lot of my clients tend to reach for the sugar. I suggest you cut up a carrot and a green apple and munch on these with a healthy dip like hummus or some nut butter. Bonus is that carrots and green apples support women's estrogen metabolism. Or, pour yourself a warm herbal tea or a mushroom hot chocolate, (I like Four Sigmatic and Harmonic Arts). This will halt a sugar craving whilst you get the amazing benefits of the medicinal mushrooms. You can also pour some mineral water and add lime, lemon or berries to it as a way to keep your hands busy and enjoy a sweet beverage.
5. If your sugar cravings are really intense I would suggest you give the herb gymnema a try. It can help to halt sugar cravings Glutamine can also stop a sugar craving when you put some on your tongue as can taking a shot of apple cider vinegar or a dropper of bitters.
6. Check your gut health! Gut bugs like candida can be very opportunistic and actually cause you to crave sugar for their own survival. If you do all the tips mentioned above and you still crave sugar like a mad woman, then doing a GI Map stool test is a good option, (you can set up a free 15 min consultation with me here if you're interested in doing one of these tests).
7. Finally, remember that sugar consumption is a habit. The more you eat the more you want to eat – so keep that in mind. I used to have a terrible sweet tooth but over time I have tamed it and can now resist sugar like never before. But it took patience and practice and the understanding that sugar is HUGELY detrimental to our health. I'm not perfect, but I know that if I fall off the wagon I can tough it out for a few days and then be back on the low-sugar habit once more.
I really do hope these tips help you. These are the types of things we talk about inside The Healthy Mama Hive so if you want to join have a peek at what all the fuss is about here.