How to make sugar-free easier on yourself

sugar, Sugar, SUGAR!

I love sugar, I love sweets, and I also don’t love how I feel when eating too much of it, so I have strategies in place for myself and I teach them to my clients so that a reduced sugar consumption becomes easier. For anyone who consumes too much sugar, it can be really hard to cut back, let alone stop, so here are some strategies that can help.

  1. Drink water
    Water water water! Staying hydrated is important for so many reasons, and most people drink less water than they think they do, but for the purpose of cutting sugar, it helps may help because it eliminates the fake hunger. Many times you’re actually thirsty, but you think you’re hungry, so you eat! Having a drink can also remove the mindless munching.
  2. Decrease processed food
    The more real food you eat, the less sugar you’ll intake. This doesn’t mean you need to eat “clean” (no, that’s not a real thing) or raw or whatever, this just means that if you prioritize less processed foods, then you automatically decrease your sugar intake.
  3. Make your own treats whenever possible
    Eat whatever you want, as long as you make it yourself. Now, listen, take that with a grain of salt because some people (like me) are completely willing to bake a whole batch of brownies and eat them all every day, but the meaning is that convenience food is never healthy, and making your own gives you more appreciation and control over ingredients. On that note, whenever you do make things, cut back the sugar by 1/4 or 1/2 the amount (e.g. brownies, cookies, breads) and sometimes eliminate it altogether (e.g. waffles, cornbread).
  4. Limit the available sugar
    If there is food, you or someone will eat it, so in trying to cut back, the easiest thing is to remove the temptation. Remember your family is not obligated to do this with you, this is your choice, your health, your habit, but this is the kind of conversation that you can have with your family/roommates and reach a common ground of what is too tempting, what you can resist, and what is doable for everyone. Very few people will adamantly refuse to have less stock of treats in the house. Remember it’s a season. It doesn’t get easier, you get stronger. In time, being around your trigger foods is not so triggering anymore.
  5. Give yourself an out
    By this I mean: acknowledge that you like certain things, and figure out how to fit it in your life. No one ever got fat from eating one donut… it’s when the one donut leads you to think that you’re bad, so you eat 3 donuts, then you decide you screwed up anyway so you might as well eat half a pizza and some fries, and then you might as well… you get the picture.

    Either plan your high calorie treats to fit your goals (calories, macros, portion control, whatever you do), or find substitutes you are happy with.
  6. Forgive yourself and move on
    So you had a hard day and ate more sugar than usual. Move on. Don’t let that derail your whole day, just acknowledge it and move on. Make the next best choice for your goals, and leave the past behind. Fun fact is that the longer you go without sugar, the less you crave it, so sticking through the hard part really does make you want it less in the long run. Figure out how YOU want to live the rest of your life, and choose accordingly.

Thanks for stopping by and let me know how you’re doing on your journey!

Keeping it simple,
AK

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