How to Avoid a Sugar Overload this Halloween

Arguably the scariest thing about sugar is its effect on inflammation of the body. Inflammation is part of the body’s immune response, but when it’s prolonged due to failure to address what was causing it in the first place (such as sugar), it turns into chronic inflammation.

Complications From Chronic Inflammation

Chronic inflammation can last for several months or years and can include:

  • asthma
  • chronic peptic ulcer
  • tuberculosis
  • rheumatoid arthritis
  • periodontitis
  • ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease
  • sinusitis
  • active hepatitis
  • Chronic disease
Basically, inflammation can pave the way towards chronic diseases, which are responsible for 7 out of every 10 deaths in the United States. Inflammation is a serious issue, but with proper diet modifications (sugar-free), lifestyle changes, stress management, and adequate sleep, inflammation can be better controlled.  

Switching to a No/Low Sugar Diet

Switching to a no-sugar diet can be tricky, but with some guidance and super yummy recipes to follow, the transition can be smooth and relatively easy to adhere to. Quitting cold-turkey is not always ideal, as the side effects can be tough to deal with while your body rids itself of the sugar addiction. One of the best resources out there is I Quit Sugar: Your Complete 8-Week Detox Program and Cookbook, by Sarah Wilson. This book is seriously a life saver when trying to beat a sugar addiction. Wilson includes 108 sugar-free recipes, plus an 8 week detox plan that’s flexible and totally doable.

 

Cutting out sugar doesn’t mean that you can never satisfy your sweet tooth again. There are some sweet alternatives out there that don’t spike your blood sugar, or wreak havoc on your health. Our personal favorite? Stevia.

Tell Me About Stevia

Stevia is an all-natural sweetener that has zero calories, doesn’t spike blood sugar, and actually has some major health benefits to offer. At 100-200 times sweeter than sugar, a little stevia goes a long way in both taste and nutrition. In fact, stevia has been shown to lower blood pressure, improve cholesterol, and it even has some anticancer abilities. Plus, it’s a super easy swap in all of your favorite recipes, so you won’t have to miss out on your favorite festive treats ever! 

 

No one is perfect though, and the holidays can prove to be especially difficult when it comes to avoiding sugar. Family events and all of those tasty seasonal goodies can weaken even the strongest of will powers, but even if sugar gets the best of you this time, don’t worry. Just be mindful of what you eat, and make some easy changes that your body will truly thank you for.

So You Just Overloaded on Sugar... Now What?

First of all, don’t freak out. Your body is already flooded with cortisol, so stressing out about what you just ate will only make things worse. Instead, focus on what you can do now to help get yourself back on track and rid your body of the yucky effects of too much sugar.

Some of the best ways to do so include:

Loading up on protein and fiber

Protein and fiber are slow digesting and help to stabilize blood sugar. If you don’t stabilize your blood sugar, that horrible crash is sure to hit you, and make you want to eat more than you really need. Try having some nuts, a hard boiled egg, or veggies and hummus to help ward off the crash.

Prep a healthy meal for later

This is a great way to avoid any more temptations of unhealthy foods. Just throw together some lean protein and vegetables with a healthy fat for a delicious meal that can sit in the fridge until you’re ready for it.

Snack on some probiotic-rich foods

All of the sugar that you just ate can seriously throw off your digestive system, and the “bad” bacteria in your gut makes for the perfect feeding ground for sugar, which can affect cognitive function. Drinking kombucha, eating some unsweetened Greek yogurt, or taking probiotic supplements can help get more of the “good” bacteria back into your system.

Manage your stress

Whether it be yoga, essential oils, or meditation, getting your stress under control will help you avoid sweets in the first place. 80% of people report that they crave sweets when under stress. So, manage stress to tame that sweet tooth. 

 

Sugar overload happens. It’s what you do after the sugar-laden feast that counts. Chances are, that horrible feeling of the sugar crash (paired with the shocking information about sugar’s effects on the body) are enough to help you try to swear off sugar for good. The process isn’t an easy one, but you will feel so much better once the sugar addiction is gone, and your sweet cravings are satisfied from natural, healthy alternatives such as stevia.

Go into Halloween this year bearing these things in mind for a regret-free holiday that won’t leave you bloated, tired, and miserable the next day. Trick-or-treat, and Happy Halloween!

About the Author - Lindsay Ware

Beginning during her high school years, Lindsay noticed an immediate dip in energy. Along with fatigue, she also showed signs of lack of concentration, digestive problems, and a weakened immune system. After years of non-conclusive tests at the clinic, Lindsay finally received the correct diagnosis of Celiac Disease from her local Naturopath.

 

After cutting out gluten completely, Lindsay realized how much of a difference changing your diet can make to your overall wellbeing. Instead of drinking 3 coffees a day, Lindsay relies on the natural energies of clean foods to keep her mind sharp and her writing skills flowing.

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