Signs Your Body Is Addicted to Sugar

 

We all look for a sweet fix now and then. Whether you prefer candy, chocolate, sugary drinks, or desserts, a sweet tooth craving once in a while is relatively common. But how do you know when your cravings for a sugary treat are too much? Here are some common signs your body is addicted to sugar. Some of them you may already know, but others may surprise you.

 

What is sugar addiction and why should I be concerned?

In simple terms, a sugar addiction is the psychological or emotional reliance on sugary foods and drinks. When you eat sugar, your brain releases the neurotransmitter dopamine and you can get a short-term general good feeling and boost of energy.

The addiction comes into play when you begin to rely on those feelings. And over time, your brain adjusts so that you need to eat more and more sugar to recreate that fleeting high.

While sugar when consumed in moderate amounts is generally little cause for concern, recent studies have shown a growing trend of excessive sugar consumption in America. For many, this can lead to multiple health and psychological issues such as heart disease, obesity, and depression.

So how do you know if your body is addicted to sugar? Let’s take a look at some common symptoms.

You consume large amounts of food or drinks loaded with sugar

Eating this way is one of the most obvious telltale signs of sugar addiction. Here’s just a small sampling of foods laden with sugar.

  • Juice or juice drinks
  • Fruit (fresh, dried, canned or packaged)
  • Sports, vitamin or energy drinks
  • Protein, cereal or snack bars
  • Sauces (tomato, spaghetti, barbeque)
  • Condiments (ketchup)
  • Salad dressing
  • Low-fat processed foods
  • Chocolate milk or hot cocoa
  • Flavored coffee
  • Iced tea
  • Breakfast cereal or granola
  • Yogurt
  • Bread

 

You need to eat or snack all day

It’s not just cake and chocolate you crave. All carbs, including the carbs in fruits and vegetables, turn into sugar in your body. Even if you don’t have a sweet tooth, intense cravings throughout the day for bread, pasta, chips, and baked goods could be a sign of sugar addiction.

You make excuses

If you find yourself coming up with reasons to justify why it’s ok to consume specific sugary foods or drinks, it could be a telling sign you have a sugar addiction. Here are a few common excuses you may notice yourself using to explain why you’re eating or drinking sugary foods.

  • It’s organic.
  • It’s calorie-free.
  • It’s low-fat.
  • I’ll just have a little.

In regards to this and the next two points, please understand that I am not sharing all of this information to shame you. Many times sugar addiction has an underlying root cause of parasites or fungus/candida. I share this information to encourage you because these issues are not your fault at all and can be helped.

You hide the sugary goods

Do you hide the sweets in the back of the cupboards or the far corner of the pantry so no one can see them? Or sneak around to eat your sugary treats and desserts? Do you lie to yourself or others about what and how much you eat? These are typical signs of an addiction.

You can’t get enough

Every time you eat something sweet, your body craves more. You need more and more sugar over time to satisfy a craving, and your sugar cravings increase the longer you go without it. It could be a sign your brain has become desensitized, and you’ve built up a tolerance for sweets which can happen over time.

You’ve tried to quit and went through withdrawal symptoms

If you’ve attempted to quit or cut back before, but experienced headaches, nausea, mental fog, involuntary shaking, or mood changes when you didn’t have your typical treat, it could be signs of withdrawal. Other symptoms to look for include cravings, insomnia, muscle pain, lethargy, gas, and bloating.

 

More telltale signs of sugar addiction

Here are other symptoms that may indicate a sugar addiction.

  • You crave sugary food and drinks or high-carb foods.
  • You think about and want sugar every day.
  • You eat when you’re bored or stressed, become hyper then crash or feel sluggish or fatigued.
  • You’re overweight and carry excess fat around your abdomen.
  • You have wrinkles.
  • You have tooth problems.
  • You have gut issues.

 

Bottom Line

If any of these resonate with you, it may not necessarily mean you’re doomed to live a life with sugar addiction. But it makes you think, don’t you agree?

Now that you know some of the common signs your body is addicted to sugar, I’d love to hear from you. Can you relate to any of this? How has it affected your life and the people around you? Let me know in the comments.

BONUS RECIPES:

Healthy Banana Ice Cream Recipes

Want to enjoy your favorite frozen treat without the guilt? You can with delicious and healthy banana ice cream. It’s sweet and creamy just like traditional ice cream, but without the artificial ingredients. Plus, it’s low in sugar, calories and fat.

I love it because it is so surprisingly easy to prepare. One ingredient and a little free time are all you need to make delicious banana ice cream. When it comes to flavors, the sky’s the limit. Simply add in berries, nuts, or any other mix-ins your heart desires.

It’s Good for You

Not only is it sweet and tasty, but it’s actually really very good for you. Unlike regular milk-based ice cream, this easy banana ice cream recipe is free of artificial additives or added sugars. Plus, you get plenty of vitamins and minerals like potassium, magnesium, and vitamin B6 as well as a boost of fiber from bananas. Yes, there is fruit sugar but for generally healthy people fruit sugar is okay…just don’t overdue it.

It Starts with Bananas

The base of these recipes is bananas. Ripe ones with brown spots are ideal but don’t use them if they’re mushy. It’ll be too hard to cut up.

Start by lining a cookie sheet  or tray with baking paper or use a silicone baking sheet. Next peel and cut two bananas into 1/4 to 1/2-inch chunks. Place the pieces on the sheet with space in between, so they’re not touching. This will make it easier to remove later. Then freeze the bananas for about 4 – 5 hours until firm.

Flavors and Mix-Ins

Oh, the choices! I’ve listed just a few recipe variations below, but you can also try any of these flavors and mix-ins.

– Raspberry, blueberry, blackberry, cherry (frozen in small chunks)

– Peaches, mango, kiwi (frozen in small pieces)

– Almonds, walnuts, peanuts (diced)

– Dark chocolate (small bits, ideally at least 70% cacao)

– Almond butter, peanut butter

– Honey, maple syrup

– Lemon extract

– Cinnamon

 

Toppings

Just as you have a multitude of banana ice cream flavors, you have a ton of options for toppings, too. Cacao nibs, grated dark chocolate, chopped nuts, or even homemade chocolate sauce are just a few you can try.

A word of warning, though – don’t go too crazy. You still want to make this a healthy dessert, right? Adding a mountain of nuts and sauce will defeat the purpose, so limit it to just a light sprinkling of topping.

Texture

I like a thick soft-serve texture, but if you prefer harder ice cream, transfer your mixture to a freezer-safe, airtight container and place it in the freezer for hour or until it’s firm enough to scoop.

Another fun option to make: a shake you can drink! Simply stop processing once you get that milkshake consistency. If you find it’s not blending just right, try adding a little almond or coconut milk until you reach the consistency you prefer.

Storage

You can double the recipe or make big batches and store the extras in an airtight container in the freezer. Any leftover banana ice cream can be similarly stored as well. It will keep nicely for up to a week. When you’re ready to take it out, let it soften at room temperature until you get the consistency you prefer.

 

Now, who’s ready for some ice cream?

Healthy Banana Ice Cream Recipes

Prep Time: 4-5 hours

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Servings: 3

Ingredients:

 

Vanilla Ice Cream

2 cups frozen bananas

1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean or extract

 

Dark Chocolate Ice Cream

2 cups frozen bananas

2 tablespoons unsweetened cacao powder

1 tablespoon maple syrup

 

Chocolate Peanut Butter

2 cups frozen bananas

1-2 tablespoons peanut butter

1 tablespoon cacao powder

 

Mint Chocolate Chip

2 cups frozen bananas

2-4 drops peppermint extract

1 tablespoon dark chocolate chips (add last)

 

Strawberry Ice Cream

1 cup frozen bananas

1 cup frozen strawberries

1 tablespoon maple syrup

 

Directions:

  1. Add the ingredients to a high-powered food processor.
  2. Process on a high setting until smooth and creamy, about 5 to 7 minutes. Scrape down the sides as needed.
  3. Serve and enjoy!

 

Who says dessert has to be unhealthy? With these healthy banana ice cream recipes, you can enjoy a delicious treat without the guilt!

Which flavor will you try first? Let me know in the comments.

Shared it on social media? I would love to see it! Tag your post with #NHICAmbassador, so I can find it.

 

Be Well & Thrive!

With Love & In Health,

Sarah Outlaw, MH, MSACN

-For more information on who we are and what we do at Natural Health Improvement Center of South Jersey and Natural Health Improvement Center of Des Moines, browse the rest of our website. We practice Root Cause Nutrition and offer Nutritional Coaching, Nutrition Response Testing, Functional Nutrition, Herbal Medicine, and Homeopathy. We also offer detox services including an infrared sauna, and PEMF (pulsed electromagnetic field therapy mat, and foot bath (DSM office). We are on the front lines of wellness for you!

Get Your Free Ultimate Guide to Sugar Ebook!

 

References:

  1. https://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/health-benefits-bananas#1
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27041291
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2235907/
  4. https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article/98/3/641/4577039
  5. https://www.addictioncenter.com/drugs/sugar-addiction/
  6. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/319266735_Sugar_addiction_Is_it_real_A_narrative_review

 

 

 

 

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