Weight Loss Support - How do I quit sugar??




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DaughteroftheKing
06-30-2011, 11:06 PM
OK- I NEED to do something different. I've been "maintaining" for months, more like stalled- cause I eat CRAP! And I hate the way my body feels, I want energy & I want a serious change asap!
I know sugar is my main problem, & I do want to move towards a lower carb lifestyle, but I need- for my body, my genes, I know I NEED to give up desserts, refined sugars, etc.
I'm an all or nothing type of gal- and if I plan on one dessert a week or 50 calories of delicious dark chocolate a day, that just sets me on a day, week, month (s) of sugar filled eating. So FOR NOW- for this part of my journey, until I am strong enough to handle the right things in moderation, I need to give it up.

So my question- What things do I need to look out for in processed foods? I know I've pretty much gotta say buh bye to fast food, which is fine- but as far as stuff in the grocery store- I know HFCS & even trans fats can go by other names (I forgot what though??) Also, as far as sweetening my oatmeal in the morning or eating a piece of whole grain toast- is honey a trigger for making one crave sweets?
I dont want to give up fruits either- I want to stay natural, & I feel in general, what God gave us food wise before we dumped chemicals all over it is allowable... so that will stay!

Anyways, any advice, tips, etc. ANYTHING you all can help me with would be surely appreciated. I know this is going to be very hard to do.. but I feel I need to do it & I hope God gives me strength to get through these cravings!


Tea Granny
06-30-2011, 11:26 PM
I have the same problem, so I totally avoid highly processed foods. I follow the glycemic index to determine if a certain food is likely to raise my blood sugar too fast, and the subsequesnt crash causes terrible cravings. I just can't tolerate processed carbs. I try to eat really simple clean foods- the withdrawl from the sugar was hard, so I'm really careful because I don't want to go through that again. I do occaisonally use honey as a sweetener- it has a much lower glycemic index than sugar! :)

canadianwoman
06-30-2011, 11:43 PM
Honey makes me crave so I rarely use it. Same thing with artificial sweeteners so I gave them all up including stevia.
As far as fruits go I find that berries do not make me crave sugar. Bananas do so I eat them with something else like oatmeal and a protein (a boiled egg) and limit them to half a banana. Apples do not. Cantaloupe does not as well as peaches, nectarines and pears.

I do not exclude fruit but I also do not eat it every day and when I do have it I try to kleep my servings limited t one or two servings. I also rarely eat dark chocolate because I always want the whole thing.

Try berries in your oatmeal or mash a half banana in it. Works for me and then I don't get massive sugar cravings later on....unless I am close to my TOM but then that is a whole different ballgame.

Oh...anything ending in -ose (sucrose, dextrose) is a sugar. Some artificial sweeteners end in -ol (malitol, sorbitol) and can trigger cravings too.


misski
07-01-2011, 12:25 AM
I use Truvia. I'm not sure if that's unhealthy, but it's a natural plant. :) You can find it in any grocery store, especially health food stores.

JohnP
07-01-2011, 01:50 AM
Calories determine fat loss or gain. You're not stalled because you're eating crappy foods you're stalled because you're eating the number of calories your body needs to maintain it's weight. Eating "healthy" foods is good for a variety of reasons but you can gain weight eating healthy foods just as you can lose weight eating junk. Calories matter.

If you want to quit sugar - just quit. Sounds like you're not big on cooking. No biggie. Every food product you buy has a food label and on it you will be able to see how much sugar the product contains. Read before you buy.

Lovely
07-01-2011, 02:07 AM
I gather from your post that what you're trying to do is to cut out most refined sugars and/or overly processed foods.

Sugars generally are the "oses": Lactose, Fructose, Sucrose, Glucose. So if you're trying to avoid sugars in processed foods watch for the 'oses'.

You might also consider something like "no white carbs" to be a side step from that. Whole wheat breads instead of white breads. Brown rice instead of white rice.

As to what will cause a trigger... that is very individual. Some people might be okay with a little honey or agave nectar or maple syrup (hey, they're all from nature, right?) , and for others it might be too sweet and too close to pure refined sugar. You're going to have to find out. Maybe it's best to cut those out to start, too.

DaughteroftheKing
07-01-2011, 02:11 AM
Calories determine fat loss or gain. You're not stalled because you're eating crappy foods you're stalled because you're eating the number of calories your body needs to maintain it's weight....Calories matter.



Oh I absolutely agree with this, but the problem is that eating sugary foods makes me crave more sugary foods- which has led me to stall- so yes, the root of is it the amount of calories, but I personally feel I need to let go of sugar to be able to eat the correct amount of calories my body needs to loose weight.

DaughteroftheKing
07-01-2011, 02:11 AM
I gather from your post that what you're trying to do is to cut out most refined sugars and/or overly processed foods.

Sugars generally are the "oses": Lactose, Fructose, Sucrose, Glucose. So if you're trying to avoid sugars in processed foods watch for the 'oses'.

You might also consider something like "no white carbs" to be a side step from that. Whole wheat breads instead of white breads. Brown rice instead of white rice.

As to what will cause a trigger... that is very individual. Some people might be okay with a little honey or agave nectar or maple syrup (hey, they're all from nature, right?) , and for others it might be too sweet and too close to pure refined sugar. You're going to have to find out. Maybe it's best to cut those out to start, too.

Awesome, thanks for the tips!

JohnP
07-01-2011, 02:31 AM
Oh I absolutely agree with this, but the problem is that eating sugary foods makes me crave more sugary foods- which has led me to stall- so yes, the root of is it the amount of calories, but I personally feel I need to let go of sugar to be able to eat the correct amount of calories my body needs to lose weight.

It takes about 30 days to establish new habits. Thus - you just need to maintain your will power for 30 days and then things will get easier.

I think to a certain extent we're all hardwired to love sugar. The more we eat the more we crave it.

QuilterInVA
07-01-2011, 09:45 AM
To be healthy we need lean protein, whole grains, fruits and vegetables, good fats and dairy. Sugar has NO nutritional value only a ton of calories and it sets off cravings. You quit it by not using it. Shop the outside perimeter of the grocery store and avoid prepared, boxed and processed foods. Artifical sweeteners set off cravings in me and have been shown to cause cravings so I don't use them either.

ERHR
07-01-2011, 12:37 PM
To get off sugar, you just have to get off and stay off. I've been under 15 g of sugar a day for about 6 months now and that's working for me (just to give you a reference point). You have to do the same thing you do when you're calorie-counting or anything else - before you eat something, look at the nutrition data on the package or look it up on the internet to make sure you're not eating too much.

You may need to consider giving up some natural foods that are high in sugar. I basically don't eat fruit any more except for avocados, tomatoes, and berries. I don't eat starchy vegetables like potatoes, corn or peas. I didn't want to give up yogurt because I thought of it as a health food but I did and I'm fine. Experiment with cutting out everything high-sugar and then add back in fruits with higher sugar content one at a time, for instance, and see how you react.

Regarding your oatmeal, the awesome thing about getting off sugar is that you can detect more subtle levels of sweetness. I used to add table sugar or honey or raisins to my oatmeal - all have LOTS of sugar no matter how you slice it - but after I went off sugar I found even totally plain oatmeal to be palatable. Now I sweeten my oatmeal with peanut butter, if you can believe it. I put 1 tbsp of peanut butter (1.5 g sugar) in half a serving of oatmeal and it tastes wonderful to me - plus I'm adding more fat and protein into a carb-heavy item.

DaughteroftheKing
07-01-2011, 01:09 PM
To get off sugar, you just have to get off and stay off. I've been under 15 g of sugar a day for about 6 months now and that's working for me (just to give you a reference point). You have to do the same thing you do when you're calorie-counting or anything else - before you eat something, look at the nutrition data on the package or look it up on the internet to make sure you're not eating too much.

You may need to consider giving up some natural foods that are high in sugar. I basically don't eat fruit any more except for avocados, tomatoes, and berries. I don't eat starchy vegetables like potatoes, corn or peas. I didn't want to give up yogurt because I thought of it as a health food but I did and I'm fine. Experiment with cutting out everything high-sugar and then add back in fruits with higher sugar content one at a time, for instance, and see how you react.

Regarding your oatmeal, the awesome thing about getting off sugar is that you can detect more subtle levels of sweetness. I used to add table sugar or honey or raisins to my oatmeal - all have LOTS of sugar no matter how you slice it - but after I went off sugar I found even totally plain oatmeal to be palatable. Now I sweeten my oatmeal with peanut butter, if you can believe it. I put 1 tbsp of peanut butter (1.5 g sugar) in half a serving of oatmeal and it tastes wonderful to me - plus I'm adding more fat and protein into a carb-heavy item.

Thank you!!!

graterandy
07-01-2011, 02:39 PM
When I tried to reduce my sugar intake, it just didn't work. If I ate something very sweet, I'd crave it again same time next day, and simply continued eating too much sugar every day. What worked for me was to quit anything with added sugar (I mean anything that is very sweet, honey is included of course, but there's sneaky ones like ketchup) completely for two weeks. Now I occasionally have a popsicle or 75% fruit jam on my toast. I put artificial sweetener in my coffee.

It's much easier to stay in control because although I still love sweets, my body's no longer used to, or asking for, big amounts of sugar.

Non-seasonal, always-available fruits such as apples and oranges are technically 'too high' in sugar, but I eat two small servings a day anyway.

rawbanana
07-01-2011, 10:48 PM
I am going to be watching this thread! I think I am VERY addicted to quite a few sugary foods-once I start I can NOT stop! Moderation does NOT work for me =) I have found fruits dont do this to me (favs are oranges, blueberries in my kashi cereal, apples w/a little crunchy pb, strawberries in my plain yogurt) etc....and I have had raw honey in my oatmeal too with no 'crazy addiction' problems....Prayers for you to fight it!!!

April Snow
07-01-2011, 11:56 PM
I am doing the Dukan diet which is very strict about carbs. You eat meat and no fat dairy (which does have some natural sugars) and veggies, along with a small amount of oat bran (not oatmeal) every day.

And that's it - no grains, starches, sugars, even no fruit (at least for the phase I'm in). So I have not had any sugar for almost 6 weeks. I never thought of myself as a sugar/carb addict but I have to say that getting rid of them completely has been amazing. I am not having cravings, I feel fine and I'm losing weight at a rate that is much, much faster than I've ever lost before (I expect to break 20 lbs for my official 6 week WI in a couple of days).

So as hard as it is to imagine giving up sugar, I think you will find that it is actually much easier than you imagine, once you get through the first few days.

DaughteroftheKing
07-02-2011, 01:11 AM
I am going to be watching this thread! I think I am VERY addicted to quite a few sugary foods-once I start I can NOT stop! Moderation does NOT work for me =) I have found fruits dont do this to me (favs are oranges, blueberries in my kashi cereal, apples w/a little crunchy pb, strawberries in my plain yogurt) etc....and I have had raw honey in my oatmeal too with no 'crazy addiction' problems....Prayers for you to fight it!!!

Exactly how I am- I'm keeping fruits & tomorrow I'm even gonna try honey with my oatmeal- cause I could never imagine eating a strawberry or honey & saying "Oh man I need to eat this whole carton of strawberries or this whole bottle of honey!" lol.. Anyways, day one down & it was great :) even went below my calories which is awesome for me as I've been going way over lately!

alaskanlaughter
07-02-2011, 02:12 AM
i'm right there with ya on the fight against sugar!! :) just the taste of sugar is enough to set my cravings going...heck i crave sugar without even tasting any lol...but fruits dont set my addictions going like that...although i have been known to eat a whole carton of strawberries :) there is a birthday party tomorrow and cake is my downfall :( i hope i have the willpower to avoid it

TooManyDimples
07-02-2011, 07:43 AM
That's great that your first day went well. When I first get off sugar I sometimes get headaches for a day or two. When I'm on plan I eat very little sugar, but I decided to try to break myself of it even more so this month I'm not allowing myself even the healthy chocolate I've been leaving in my plan so I don't go crazy. Well going crazy or not, it will be a chocolate free month for me. =) Good luck with beating your sugar monster.

Lyn2007
07-02-2011, 12:03 PM
Yep, sugar sets off your brain in a way that makes it hard to stop eating it.

I think it is easiest to cut it out cold turkey. After several days to a week, you will feel better! Go ahead and enjoy fruit but watch your reactions to it. I think 2 servings of fruit/day is a nice balanced amount. You can do it!

darway
07-02-2011, 01:19 PM
Regarding your oatmeal, the awesome thing about getting off sugar is that you can detect more subtle levels of sweetness. I used to add table sugar or honey or raisins to my oatmeal - all have LOTS of sugar no matter how you slice it - but after I went off sugar I found even totally plain oatmeal to be palatable.

ERHR made a good point here that is worth repeating. You can "recalibrate" your sense of taste, to notice the subtle sweetness that is already in whole foods. I do not add sugar to anything anymore. Yes, even plain oatmeal and milk will taste sweet after you acclimate. I may put a little cinnamon in, or eat it with figs. But no sugar.

Other "bland" things that taste sweet are tomatoes, guacamole, milk, carrots, corn, fresh peas, multigrain bread.

I didn't just give up sugar to lose weight. My mother's side of the family has blood sugar and diabetic issues. I wanted to beat heredity to the punch, and form good habits while I have time to. I absolutely DO NOT want to be sticking my finger for blood and checking my glucose every day! :nono:

JayZeeJay
07-02-2011, 04:25 PM
A side note regarding glycemic values mentioned earlier:

The glycemic load (GL) values for sugar, honey and agave nectar are very similar while their glycemic index (GI) values differ:
Sugar (sucrose): GL=8; GI=68
Honey: GL=9; GI=55
Agave nectar: GL=9.6; GI=30

Agave nectar is higher in fructose than sugar (sucrose) and is therefore sweeter but potentially more capable of causing metabolic syndrome, etc. than sucrose (similar to HFCS). This is a controversial topic, and unfortunately there is no consensus yet on "better" and "worse" sugars and on the importance of GL versus GI. Agave does has the clear advantage over honey in being vegan though!

Eliminating all added sugars of any source is probably your best bet.

Esofia
07-02-2011, 05:36 PM
You'll get used to it, don't worry. Meanwhile, you may find that it helps to get used to wholegrains, as you get a different kind of sustained energy release from them. Start with wholemeal bread, that's usually the easiest to find a tasty form of.

Oatmeal is very flexible, there are oodles of things you can do with it. I like to put a couple of dates' worth of chopped dates into mine at the start of cooking.

Fruit - some are higher in calories than others. Satsumas and such are good, they're small so you get a nice treat but you're not devouring lots of calories. Strawberries are great, 100g of them will only set you back 30 calories.

ELBS717
07-02-2011, 07:44 PM
Like Lovely said, avoid anything that ends in "-ose," but another TRICKY one to look out for is anything that ends in "-ol" (ex. Sorbitol, Maltitol). These are sugar alcohols!
I found the best way to get over sugar cravings is to avoid any processed food at all, even the 'low-carb' tortillas (I was hooked onthese for a while, but could not lose weight while eating them. As soon as I cut them out, I started to lose weight again).
If you do want something sweet, berries (blackberries, blueberries, etc), cherries, and apples, apples, apples are the best things to eat. Avoid raisins, dried cranberries, and bananas, these have lots of sugar. The fiber in the berries and the apples will slow your insulin response, so the natural sugars/carbs don't act *so much* like carbs normally do in your body.
I recommend have apples for snacks throughout the day, but hold off on berries or cherries until the night time (as dessert). If you eat them early in the day, you might end up wanting some sugar later in the day.

DaughteroftheKing
07-02-2011, 10:56 PM
Wahhhh I'm at a 4th of July party with red velvet cake, cookies, cupcakes, and brownies!!! :( I need strength!! And then I'm going to disneyland next friday, I just want to give in and eat all these delicious things! Well, day 2 sucks way more.. TRYING to hold on...

IsabellaOlivia
07-02-2011, 11:36 PM
For me, it's fairly simple. The more sugar I eat, the more I crave it.
If I drink a can of Coke, I will be craving coke stronger the next day than if there has been three weeks since the last time I drank a can of Coke.
If you just get through the first two weeks, then the worst of the cravings will be gone.

DaughteroftheKing
07-03-2011, 12:50 AM
Absolutely- WELL I made it through the night with what I would call a 50/50 victory- I didnt eat any desserts- yay!! BUT I did go over my calories with a hamburger (no bun) and 3 mini shredded bbq chicken sandwiches (on a white bun :( ), but though these arent the healthiest options & yes, even bbq sauce is laden with sugar, the point of all this was to quit the desserts/sodas/sweets that cause me to crave more sugar- so I'd say so far so good! Just gotta keep on saying no & get stricter day by day with my carb intake as well :)
If anyone has any tips as far as road trip snack foods go (a 2 day trip to Disneyland/San Diego/beach) please let me know!! Fruit & string cheese & such will be good only on the way there cause were going right to disneyland & not stopping to our hotel (refrigerator) first...