How to reduce sugar cravings and how I’m tackling mine!

wellbeing

How to reduce sugar cravings and how I’m tackling mine!

wellbeing

How to reduce sugar cravings

Ah sugary sweet treats how I have loved thee! I’ve always had a sweet tooth, but never before have I needed sweet food. Until now that is! Since I became a mama, I’ve found that my sugar cravings and need for sweet, sugary foods has dramatically increased. Today I’m sharing a quick little blog where I’m talking about my experiences with sugar cravings, how I’m addressing mine and some tips for how to address yours!

As I say in the blog I’m not about to ‘quit’ sugar. Rather I am working to reduce the space that sweet sugary food has in my diet, and yes that certainly includes the healthy sweet foods like fruit, dried fruit and honey too.

I’ve actually written and talked about this topic several times before, so for lots more information check out these posts:

What are your experiences with sugar? Can you relate to the kind of cravings I’ve been experiencing? What are your tips for reducing sugar cravings? What are your views on naturally sweet foods?

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14 Comments

  1. Louise (@louliveswell)

    I’ve been on a sugar-quitting exploration recently too. I’ve been following Sarah Wilson’s I Quit Sugar books to do this – they’re fab. I didn’t know you had interviewed her though – how exciting! I am going to read that post right now :) I don’t think sugar is evil but I think it pays to look at how much we’re consuming and where it is hidden and we might not realise it’s in foods. I know that personally I feel (and sleep!) a ton better without sugar but I can’t go without a little fruit – I mean, what’s a smoothie without banana?! Lx

    Reply
  2. Kezia @ Super Naturally Healthy

    I have been loving medal dates recently as various studies show them to have a low GI which is great so they are fab with some almond butter and I like it right to find your own bodies balance on it. But I do think some sweetness is important for the body as there are so many naturally sweet foods out there – so it is about tuning into what you body needs for health and if necessary healing ;)

    Reply
  3. Alex

    I’ve just done a hypnosis session to get me off sugar and it’s been a life changer! I don’t feel any different for eating less but I’m enjoying no longer being dependent on biscuits for a pick me up.

    Reply
  4. Sophie

    What a cool useful post, my friend! :) I don’t eat normal white sugar anymore at home since 3 years ago. I love dates but my preference goes out to coconut sugar. I use it in my baking! :)

    Reply
  5. Lucy

    I go through phases of realising it’s time to reduce the sugar, and unfortunately for me, I have grown up with a sweet tooth. When I had my first (semi) diagnosis for PCOS last year, I went all out and was very firm with myself about my sugar intake. I was very very controlled, went pretty low carb and only had something sweet about once a week. Nevertheless I managed to get my periods back this way, after a year of not having them!
    However, since then I just learnt I can’t live being that controlled and rigorous with my diet. Usually I am pretty good and the foods I eat are pretty low GI but I do like to indulge and chocolatey treats are my weakness, plus my boyfriend always persuades me to go and have a drink with him during the week (meaning several glasses of wine, eek).
    In the past few weeks after some baking my sugar intake was higher than I like it to be, meaning I’m dealing with some nasty under the skin spots on my chin, which always creep up after I’ve gone a bit sugar crazy. Because of my hormones and skin, I have to be very careful with my sugar intake so it’s usually berries and dark chocolate that become the ‘sweet’ sources for me.

    I agree with you that it’s pretty impossible to completely quit sugar in ALL forms, whether that’s the classic white stuff or if that’s natural sweet things or sweeteners. If you’re going to have something sweet, go for something that’s got some nutritional benefits where possible. Otherwise, it’s just important to understand how you consume sugar and finding ways to ensuring you keep this intake minimal and controlled.
    There is absolutely nothing wrong with once or twice a week having a desert or tasty baked treat. I remember your post about upgrading your treats, so getting the best type of treat where possible e.g. a cupcake from a really nice local patisserie or making the treats at home yourself. Everything in moderation and do what works best for you.

    She’s So Lucy

    Reply
  6. Cat

    Ahhh sugar! I’ve definitely got less of a sweet tooth these days, but I do get into a bit of a sweet-treat-after-meals thing every now and then (especially after holidays!) and when I notice I try to get on top of it. It’s just like you say – I don’t want the feeling of being ruled by my cravings!

    Reply
  7. Steph

    I rarely think about reducing sugar and sugary food but lately I’ve noticed that I don’t eat as much sweet as I used to and honestly that’s kind of strange for me ;D Now a single chocolate bar can stay for a week and more before I eat the whole thing and I don’t remember such phenomenon ever happened before

    Reply
  8. Anna @AnnaTheApple

    Sugar is my nemesis. I am definitely a pudding person not a starter person ;-) I know it’s something I need to control (and not seek artificial sweeteners to fill the hole) and can get out of hand, but I also think life without sugar would be shockingly depressing. But I’m talking about unabashedly sugar-filled things like chocolate and cake, not the nasty hidden sugar in most processed ‘normal’ foods. I avoid those by trying to cook all my own food and not reaching for microwave meals or processed snacks. Sugar though will always be in my life, I just have to control the levels!

    Reply
  9. Caroline

    That was really interesting and it rings a lot of bells with me. My mum used to give me sweets after lunch when I was 2 or so to keep me quiet while she was doing the washing up. I think that started the idea of something sweet after lunch. But then my children weren’t given sweets after lunch and they are definitely hard-wired for sugar. I once made for them your sweet potato oaty choc chip biscuits and they made faces saying they were a bit odd tasting. They didn’t have any sugar in I loved them but they weren’t so keen. These days I have stopped all snacks in the morning as I find I’m hungry in the afternoons. I always end lunch with some fruit though and then some days (not every day) I have maybe some good dark chocolate or a treat with my cup of tea a bit later. I will try the fruit teas as I have had some success like this in the past they definitely help when you want something sweet. Also I think I confuse wanting something sweet with being thirsty. Apparently this is a common mistake. As I eat 2/3 portions of fruit a day usually a portion with my breakfast and some after lunch should I cut back? I find if I eat the fruit I don’t go so much for the refined sugar fixes. Like you I definitely don’t think I’ll be giving up sugar completely though.

    Reply
  10. Sarah Mallinson

    Great video!

    I’ve noticed that since I started calorie counting I’ve been craving sugar things and bingeing more than I was before, so I think reducing sugar and increasing protein and fat will be key to helping me lose weight for my wedding.

    Going to go back and re-read your other sugar posts now for some tips :)

    Reply
  11. Judy

    I have been reducing sugar ever since I picked up my first issue of Clean Eating magazine. Talk about an eye opener. I am by no means perfect when it comes to reducing sugar, but always use the 80/20 rule, which works fine for me. Reducing sugar means I have less cravings, clearer skin, more energy and the loss of a couple of pounds without effort!

    Reply
  12. Lauren

    I love you approach Laura. This is exactly the approach I took a few months ago when I noticed I was eating loads of “healthy” treats as it was still a shit load of sugar either way! I totally agree that the approach differs from person to person as some people can go cold turkey no bother whilst that could amplify cravings for others. Also, chemically, mentally or physically, different people could be craving sweet stuff for a variety of reasons, so it really is different for everyone! The nut butter after a meal is a great shout as it is so filling and satisfying that usually any sweet craving goes away. Great advice and great tips!

    Reply
  13. Emma

    Yes! Totally with you on this. I find the sugar cravings really creep up on me and then I realise I’m eating far too much sweet stuff – even if it is natural.
    I followed an anti-candida diet for 3 months and didn’t eat any sweeteners or fruit! Fat was definitely my friend during that period and eating more nut butters, coconut and avocado, as well as high protein foods was really helpful.
    I need to get back on the savoury breakfast thing.

    Reply
  14. Amy

    I like to put cinnamon on things. Over-night oats especially. It kind of tricks my brain into thinking it’s sweet. Maybe because I used to put so much of it in my hot chocolate!

    Reply

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