Does this sound familiar?
You reluctantly crawl out of bed and head for the kettle for a strong cup of tea or coffee.
The breakfast you grab before you head to work is a jam crumpet or Marmite on toast. Up
goes your blood sugar and adrenalin levels and you start to feel normal. Or, do you lie in bed
thinking about all the things that have gone wrong, could go wrong or will go wrong? You
start to worry about everything you’ve got to do, haven’t done or should have done. About
ten minutes of this get enough adrenaline pumping through you to get you out of bed.
If either of these scenarios sounds like you, you’re caught in a vicious cycle of stress, sugar and
stimulants, and both have negative effects on your mind and mood. Stimulants promise instant
energy, but just make the problem worse. Balancing your blood sugar levels is the key to
sustained energy and weight control.
Stimulants also stimulate the brain’s feel-good chemicals. In times of stress, the adrenal glands
release a combination of hormones, including cortisol and adrenalin, that break down stores of
glucose and raise your blood sugar levels, tapping into your energy reserves to provide instant
fuel to deal with the apparent danger (in case you need to run away from a sabre tooth tiger for
example). Of course, today’s emergencies occur mainly inside our heads (overdrafts,
relationships, etc.), but we still produce adrenalin, which raises blood sugar levels. Stimulants
have the same effect, stirring up adrenalin and dopamine seriously messing with your blood
sugar and so encouraging your body to store fat.
Sugar is an artifcially refined substance that works more like a drug than a food. Dr Candace Pert,
research professor at Georgetown University Medical Centre in Washington, DC says, “I consider
sugar to be a drug, a highly purified plant product that can become addictive. Relying on an
artificial form of glucose (sugar) to give us a quick pick me up is analogous to, if not as dangerous
as, shooting heroin.” It unbalances blood sugar and causes you to experience false cravings when
you’re not hungry.
– Too much sugar can play havoc with your weight and hormones, it can cause fatigue,
increased hyperactivity and tooth decay. Refined sugar is empty calories. We get no
nutritional benefit from it. When there’s too much sugar in your blood stream, the excess
sticks to protein fibres between your skin cells, causing skin stressing reactions. The result is
premature skin ageing, causing tough, leathery skin and wrinkles.
– When sugar isn’t needed, it’s stored as fat. Eating sugar raises levels of the hormone
insulin in your blood. This creates a risk for diabetes. Sugar can damage artery walls,
making it easy for cholesterol and fat to build up and cause heart disease.
– Too much sugar affects the immune system by causing white blood cells to be sluggish,
thus lowering resistance to disease. It can increase hyperactivity.
– It encourages overgrowth of yeast (candida) and leads to fatigue because of the rise and
fall of your blood sugar level, and it can cause anxiety and irritability.
One problem with sugar is knowing where it is. You may not put sugar in your tea, or eat
chocolate regularly but it is also found in many hidden places. Ketchup is 23.6% sugar for
instance. Cans of beans or tomatoes, cereals, flavoured yoghurts, so called healthy crunch
bars, ready made and processed meals, are often a hidden source of sugar. Check food
labels for hidden sugars. Highly refined products such as white bread or rice have a high GL
(glycaemic load). If you eat them you get a rapid increase in blood sugar level and a surge in
energy, similar to the effect of sugar. This is followed by a drop as the body scrambles to
balance blood sugar levels. This is why you often get an afternoon slump, having eaten a
white bread sandwich and some chocolate or similar for lunch. This effect often leads you to
reach for more chocolate or coffee for a new energy boost, to be followed by the same
slump soon afterwards. It’s a cycle.
After 7 days of cutting out sugar you will have increased energy, your emotions will be on a
more even keel and, you will have lost the taste for it.
Go on give it a go…
Here’s what others have said:
“I am so proud of myself for completing this program. Having the daily morning messages really
helped me to stay focused.”
“I am over the moon and want to continue feeling this way.”