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    cpb's Avatar
    cpb
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    Sugar and stress

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    I know there are a few threads and topics on stress, but I would be interested in everyone's thoughts re sugar and stress. I have been giving Primal/paleo a go for about a month. Before that, I was doing the elimination diet, but this made more sense. Anyway, giving up dairy, grains, processed food, bread, diet soda etc isn't an issue. Even sugar isn't an issue until I get stressed. Today was a perfect example, started off with good intentions, but was stressed and pressured with he work I had to get done and the only thing that seems to settle me down and give me focus is sugar. Once I have satisfied the sugar demon, I was able to settle down and donthe work I needed to. I have tried to come up with my de-stress cues, but it hasn't worked so far.

    Anyone have any ideas or suggestions? (note, I suffered from adrenal fatigue last year). I really want to beat this, but having trouble and the reading I have done saying 'just work through it and exert willpower' doesn't help when I have work that needs to be done. It isn't every day, but on certain days with a particularly stressful workload.
    Let Go. Move On. Be Free.

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    The half eaten bar of caramel on my desk compels me to say taht I know this problem well and you have my sympathy x]

    If you have a little time when you get stressed, I would suggest taking a walk or perhaps doing a brief but powerful workout. It distracts you momentarily from the issue at hand and then the feel-god endorphins from exercise should have the same effect as the sugar!
    Saying that, I should really take my own advice! XD
    Bunny trainer extraordinaire!

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    Me too Pixie. I'm doing pretty well with my diet however a couple nights ago I was really freaking about something and I ended up eating a Twisted Frosty. Argh.

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    The doc that got me on low carb had adrenal fatigue on the list of things to sort out also.

    It sounds too easy, but look up deep breathing exercises. When something is going to bother you, concentrate, slow down, and remind yourself (over and over) that reacting to it is not worth it.

    Sugar is only a habit. After a week or 10 days living Primal, you lose the taste for it. I wouldn't try and substitute something else that is less harmful, because it still creates the "I need something" response. Think about how good it feels to not need to reach for a treat when things don't go your way.

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    Stress, lack of sleep, overwork: all these raise cortisol and insulin, and cause our brains to scream for he carbiest foods we have ever eaten. The only solution is to keep primal foods at hand. Have a ready substitute, or the junk will win. My new favorite is Tanka Bars, but an Atkins. EAS, or other low carb bar works, too; though meat snacks, carrots, etc., are better. We do have to re-train the brain to some extent.
    This time, like all times, is a very good one, if we but know what to do with it. Ralph Waldo Emerson

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    Lao Tsu, founder of Taoism

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    Thanks for the tips. The walking works when I don't have a deadline - but as we all know, sometimes it just has to be done. The walking has helped me some times, but not others - depending on the work that needs to be done at hand!

    I haven't been into the deep breathing, but trying to give it a go, but definitely worth still working on.

    As an immediate stress fighter, as the body is used to reaching for something to eat, my back up plan will be to walk to the supermarket (there is one not too far from the office and gets me outside as suggested) for some meat and carrot snacks to help concentrate. It should satisfy the need for something to munch on, but staying primal at the same time - and I love carrots!

    I know what you mean about re-training the brain. I got as far as a couple of weeks, and really didn't need the sugar at all - but have had a couple of stressful months with everything happening at once, which is resulting in some insomnia (she says as she writes this at 3:15am!!)
    Let Go. Move On. Be Free.

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    This probably isn't as helpful, but when it comes to things that need doing within the next few hours or so and i find myself stressing to the point of nearly crying, I find that either a good self delivered slap or spashing one's face in really cold water works for short-time stress removal. Sometimes it takes both but it sure gets me going!
    Bunny trainer extraordinaire!

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    Quote Originally Posted by cpb View Post
    Thanks for the tips. The walking works when I don't have a deadline - but as we all know, sometimes it just has to be done. The walking has helped me some times, but not others - depending on the work that needs to be done at hand!

    I haven't been into the deep breathing, but trying to give it a go, but definitely worth still working on.

    As an immediate stress fighter, as the body is used to reaching for something to eat, my back up plan will be to walk to the supermarket (there is one not too far from the office and gets me outside as suggested) for some meat and carrot snacks to help concentrate. It should satisfy the need for something to munch on, but staying primal at the same time - and I love carrots!

    I know what you mean about re-training the brain. I got as far as a couple of weeks, and really didn't need the sugar at all - but have had a couple of stressful months with everything happening at once, which is resulting in some insomnia (she says as she writes this at 3:15am!!)
    If you have any sleep issues with all, and are thinking about stress hormones changing things (for sure something to think about), look at some of the threads on melatonin, or hit my blog (in the sig) and click the melatonin category. I would argue that using melatonin is both Primal and wise-unless there is a good medical reason not to.

    I quit doing carrots because I read about them being high GI. I just looked it up to make sure and found something that said that was cooked carrots (yuk!). I do celery instead.

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    Sounds like you are a "stress" eater. You can have dark chocolate - does that not work for you? I picked up 4 bars from Wegmans just in case. I eat moreso out of boredom than anything else.
    Health is Wealth!

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