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  1. #1
    LynnBee's Avatar
    LynnBee is offline Junior Member
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    Help with sugar addiction

    Hi all. I've recently started going 100% primal, or close to it. I've always been "sort of" primal/paleo in that I've never liked the taste of dairy and pasta makes me feel gross, so without really knowing it I've had half the battle over, haha.

    But I've noticed that I have quite the sugar addiction and I've decided completely cutting out things I did binge on (ice cream, sweets mostly) and trying to be strict for a while.

    My question is how should I combat my sugar cravings? Right now I'm just eating fruit or 85% or higher cocoa for dessert as a source of "sweetness," not using honey or any kind of concentrated sweetener like maple syrup. I'm pretty good throughout the day, but night time - right now - is the WORST. I had a clemintine earlier, then some strawberries. Now I want more strawberries. Or another piece of chocolate.

    What is the best way to reset my body so that the natural sweetness in fruit is enough? How do I tell myself to stop after a few pieces of fruit? I can't decide if I should continue eating fruit or if maybe I should try going very low carb / keto for a while to see if that helps? Does anyone here who had problems with sugar know of a good route to go?

    I should probably say that I am not overweight, at all. I am a 5'4" female at 130 pounds. I'm getting back into lifting and would like my body fat to go from 25% to 20% like it was when I was a high school athlete but right now I'm more concerned about eating habits than weight. I've had bloodwork done and all of my numbers are perfect "or better" as my doctor said (he said I have one of the best vitamin D levels he's ever seen, I attribute that to being outside year round working on a farm, haha), so my blood sugar levels are fine. I don't have any health issues other than IBS-C but as long as I eat enough veggies and take magnesium I've managed to keep that under control.

    My diet is pretty consistent. I log food in MFP to get an idea of how I'm doing...by and large right now I'm doing about 55% fat consistently, and then carbs/protein it varies day to day.

    I'm just kind of stuck on how to get past this hill...if I could right now I'd eat every strawberry I have left and then probably attack the frozen blueberries next, but too much fructose is bad regardless of the source. Would going keto for a while help cravings, or make them worse? Will I just "get over" these cravings if I keep going how I'm going? Thanks in advance for any tips.

  2. #2
    TQP's Avatar
    TQP
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    I'm sure you'll get a range of responses but I'm just going to tell you that I find eating fruits as much as I want (and dialing back the fat) helps me from craving any sort of processed sweets.

    Others might tell you to cut carbs out completely for a while.

    Fructose is not that bad when it comes from fruit...in fact it's not bad at ALL.

    Otherwise, you just have to stick to clean eating for a while. The longer you give things up the less you will crave them. At this point I barely even care for most sweets/desserts.

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    If it's truly an addiction to sugar perhaps you should seek help from Overeater's Anonymous or something. If nothing else, maybe you will find out that it's not really an addiction.
    Female, 5'3", 49, Starting weight: 163lbs. Current weight: 135 (more or less).
    I can squat 180lbs, press 72.5lbs and deadlift 185lbs

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    Quote Originally Posted by TQP View Post
    I'm sure you'll get a range of responses but I'm just going to tell you that I find eating fruits as much as I want (and dialing back the fat) helps me from craving any sort of processed sweets.

    Others might tell you to cut carbs out completely for a while.

    Fructose is not that bad when it comes from fruit...in fact it's not bad at ALL.

    Otherwise, you just have to stick to clean eating for a while. The longer you give things up the less you will crave them. At this point I barely even care for most sweets/desserts.
    Great response. I personally cut them out for a while and now I can "safely" have them without wanting to eat the entire fruit bowl. I also find as time passes, I find sweets less appealing.
    "...You sort of start thinking anything's possible if you've got enough nerve. -Ginny

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    Take a harder look at the content of Strawberries. Every cup of sliced strawberry contains only 7 grams (28 calories) of sugars. So you could eat 4 cups and only take in 28 grams of carbs and only 112 calories. GI index is only 21

    What a SWEET deal
    Last edited by gdot; 03-30-2014 at 08:04 PM.

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    LynnBee's Avatar
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    Haha my only concern with overindulging in fruit is it's expensive. Nothing is in season here right now since it's still snowing and all...unfortunately my old junk food was cheaper So if I go through a whole thing of fruit in a day that's cutting into my budget.

    In response to the AA suggestion, I say "addiction" but I can't say for sure if it's something that drastic. I just get terrible cravings from time to time for sugar and after so many years of eating ice cream or other heavily sweetened foods in response to those cravings, "just fruit" doesn't do much OR I seem to want the entire container.

    Right now I tend to keep carbs between 75-100g per day, which aside from the cravings I feel fine on...I might up them for a while (let myself eat more fruit/starch) and see how that goes. As long as I don't cave and run out for a midnight treat, which I may or not have been guilty of doing from time to time in the past

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    Some folks cut energy too low when they start a new diet--since you're already lean this might be the case. The dinner plate is a better place to experiment with this than nighttime snacks because it's more likely to include nutritious proteins, vegetables, and starches (personally the tubers and starch fruits make me very indifferent to sugar).

    Eating sweets is a long-established soothing ritual for some folks, it gets stronger each time we repeat it. One solution is to reinforce a new ritual that signals "end of dinner" whether it's fruit, tea, a walk, or something else.
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    Fruit isn't inherently bad, but anything that causes you to eat more of it than you'd like to is cause for concern.

    One solution is cold turkey. If it's habit, it takes about 21-42 days to start making/breaking a habit.

    I noticed that the longer I ate lower carb in general, the less often I wanted it. One thing I just started this year is to try to eat local produce. This is easier here in the South than it might be in northern climes. We've got our first strawberries!
    "Right is right, even if no one is doing it; wrong is wrong, even if everyone is doing it." - St. Augustine

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    I'm a newbie, but I came to Primal after starting the 21 Day Sugar Detox. In short it limits fruits to one per day of grapefruit, green apple or green tipped banana for 3 weeks but unlimited meats, fish, most veggies, etc. I completely cured my sugar addiction after a couple of weeks. I can now have small portions of dark chocolate or even special desserts (bite of birthday cake) without binging on sweets. After 21 days I added back berries and other fruits in moderation since I'm trying to lose significant weight. As long as I eat enough at my meals, I haven't felt the need to snack at all since January. I'm still losing weight at a regular pace.

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    I think I need to be put on an island for a while without access to non primal foods. Im thinking that might be the only way to kick my urges unfortunately not matter how hard I try I always cave at some point

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