Many of us remember the advertisement from the 80s: “Your Brain on Drugs” featuring the egg sizzling in the frying pan.
Well as unbelievable as it sounds, some foods can act like drugs in the body and cause serious problems in our gut and brain.
Two ways are in their ADDICTIVE QUALITY and in their ABILITY TO GO WHERE NO FOOD MOLECULE SHOULD.
Sugar and Carb Addiction
Sugars, dairy, white carbs (which are basically sugar) an all gluten-containing foods can be highly addictive. Most folks in our Western culture are addicted to some degree to these foods. Do you “think” you lack willpower because you can’t resist that donut?
Guess what? Just as some people are more likely to get addicted to cocaine, and other drugs, people differ in their susceptibility to addiction to sugars and other high glycemic foods. And in an unfortunate twist of fate, when we become “insulin resistant” from eating these high glycemic foods, we are also more likely to crave them-just as they destroy our bodies and make us gain weight!
If you are severely addicted to these foods, as I have seen in some clients, it is often NOT POSSIBLE to eat these offending foods “sometimes” just as a true alcoholic cannot have a drink “sometimes”. You may not be THAT addicted but I have witnessed in myself and MANY others, the power of the addiction to sugar. It can be extremely difficult to resist.
You CAN get off these addictive foods. The less you eat them WHILE giving yourself good nutrition, the less cravings you will have for them. If you “feel good” during a right after you eat these foods, there develops BOTH an emotional AND physical response to these foods that must be broken if you are to have good health. Freedom from these cravings would be awesome wouldn’t it? The Big question then becomes HOW? It is important to work on the physical and emotional aspects of food addiction. Here are some ways to break yourself from sugars.
Allow yourself plenty of good foods- When your body has all the nutrients it needs, it will be less likely to crave the empty foods like sugar and white carbs.
Colored veggies-eat them every day and as much as you can. I don’t care HOW you eat them, just eat them. Take them in the car or to work with you.
Good fats and proteins (olive oil, coconut, chicken, fish)-with enough of these, you won’t get hungry and your body will start to feel GOOD!
Sorry I know (I really really do!) how hard it is but you must avoid sugar, gluten-containing foods, processed carbs and dairy.
Doing number one (above) will really help. If you do “fall off the wagon” with sugar, stay calm and don’t beat yourself up.
Expecting perfection from yourself only adds to the problem!
Because eating lots of sugar and gluten-containing foods depletes your body of nutrients AND lowered your body’s ability to absorb nutrients, consider a few supplements such as a good B complex, C, D3, and E in addition to a good probiotic, a good fish oil, and L-glutamine (an amino acid which heals your gut/digestion).
Be ready for emergencies. Have some good nuts (almonds, pecans, walnuts) available while you’re giving up sugars. Don’t worry too much about your calorie/portions-for now, focus on giving your body all the macro and micro nutrients it needs. Keep good, healthy foods like vegetables and nuts in your car.
Follow Food Therapists advice on “Emotional Eating”-eat if you are hungry-just eat the right stuff! And, love your body, each day finding something you love about your body.
The Escape of the Gluten Molecule
Gluten and its effects on the body are my nutritional specialty. Every single day, there is more evidence pointing to how many of us are sensitive to gluten and how it affects our BRAIN and our waistline. These crazy protein molecules escape from our gut, disrupt our body’s ability to make brain chemicals like Seratonin and ultimately can cause Depression, Foggy brain, Anger episodes, depression and can even increase symptoms of Schizophrenia, MS and thyroid disease!
One recent study found that of the cases of mental illness in which a cause was not identified, a huge 57% were found to be “reacting” to gluten. And some studies have shown that now a full 1 out of 7 people is gluten-insensitive (their immune systems are fighting gluten). Many people brush off the prevalence of giving up gluten as a “trend” but I have seen in my own and many other people’s practice, the amazing improvements people feel after going gluten-free. Many people ask me why “all of a sudden” could gluten-intolerance be so prevalent? Scientists and doctors are now studying this in earnest, and the theory is that toxins in our environment/foods have destroyed the good gut bacteria that helps our body digest foods and our immune system react appropriately. This, in conjunction with the “changed” genetic structure of wheat over the last 50 years, have created the “perfect storm” for gluten intolerance (Dr. Davis’ book Wheat Belly, describes this in detail).
I have learned firsthand the power of the right foods on our bodies.
If you desire to change your eating habits to feel better and look better, a Nutrition/Health Coach can help.