Dr. Daryl Gioffre recently released his new book Get Off Your Sugar, where he outlines his best tips for kicking sugar cravings for good.
How much sugar is in processed food?
It's often said that sugar is America's drug of choice. That's because more than 50% of Americans consume a half a pound of sugar each day, equaling 170 pounds a year.
Since 1900, the amount of sugar consumed by Americans has doubled. And that's not necessarily by choice. It's because just about every processed food we buy in the store is packed with sugar, and it's even hidden inside a lot of items. More than 80% of processed foods you find the grocery store have hidden sugar in them — this includes things like bread, sauces, green juices, and even vitamins.
The amount of sugar in foods these days isn't doing anything good for our health. In fact, the average adult is 25 pounds heavier than they were in 1960. But weight gain isn't the only thing that sugar is doing to our body — it's also literally making us sick.
Why is sugar bad for my health?
From Dr. Gioffre's Blog about sugar:
Sugar and grain consumption is at a high in the history of the human species. When people are eating high levels of sugar and carbohydrates day in and day out, the result is constantly elevated blood glucose levels.
What happens is that when you eat sugar, blood glucose levels spike. In order to maintain healthy blood sugar levels, the pancreas releases more and more insulin. If this happens long enough and often enough, it becomes a chronic inflammatory issue, leading to diabetes, heart disease, cancer, and more.
The pancreas is one of the most important organs in charge of maintaining alkaline balance. And if sugar is consumed day in and day out, the pancreas becomes overtaxed.
That leads to chronic, low-grade acidosis because the pancreas can’t process acids, which increases body toxicity over time, making you more vulnerable to diseases from the common cold all the way to heart disease. This is why you become more vulnerable to not only diabetes, but also many other diseases when you eat sugar constantly, as many Americans do.
And sadly, we’ve seen far too much of the consequences during the pandemic. So many people with diabetes and heart disease have had a much harder fight when they’ve become sick with Covid-19. I don’t have to tell you that you don’t want to put yourself in that position if you can avoid it.
One particular note about heart disease, which is not commonly associated with sugar, but it should be. You can see a correlation if you look at the rise in the low-fat, high sugar diet craze of the 1990s and the rise in obesity and heart disease. Western medicine is just starting to come around to this idea that sugar is a primary cause of heart disease. If you can stay ahead of the curve and break your relationship with sugar, there is no doubt you’ll be better off.
If that isn’t bad enough, sugar consumption causes massive depletions in one of the most important minerals for overall health, magnesium. Research shows that 80% of Americans are lacking in this vital mineral, and sugar is one of the culprits behind this deficiency.
Magnesium helps regulate glucose and insulin, so it’s no wonder there’s a strong correlation between sugar consumption, magnesium deficiency, and diabetes.
Magnesium also gives you energy, helps you sleep better, and keeps digestion flowing – all important for a healthy, functioning immune system to prevent disease.
The bottom line is if you get sick frequently, the hidden culprit may be the sugar in the foods you eat. Think of the colds and viruses you get as a helpful warning sign of potentially bigger issues like heart disease, diabetes, and cancer down the road. Remember that with each thing you put in your mouth, you’re choosing to FUEL disease, or to FIGHT it!
How do I know if sugar is affecting my health?
Here's how to tell if sugar is affecting your health:
- You have trouble losing weight.
- You get headaches frequently, including migraines.
- You have trouble sleeping.
- You have digestive issues, from constipation to diarrhea.
- You feel sluggish and tired often, even after a good night’s rest.
- You suffer from acne, rosacea, eczema, or other skin issues.
- You crave sugar at some point during your day.
- You already have high blood pressure, too much cholesterol, or other signs of heart disease.
How do I eliminate sugar from my diet and kick the habit?
From Dr. Gioffre's Blog about sugar :
So now you know the problem and its serious consequences, and you’re probably wondering what to do about it if you are addicted to sugar like so many Americans are.
Well having been a former sugar addict, I know firsthand how hard it can be to overcome sugar cravings.
In fact, keeping you addicted is built right in. Anytime you consume sugar, it keeps you feeling hungry. It alters the hormone function of 2 hunger hormones—leptin and ghrelin. When insulin levels spike from eating sugar, the effects of these 2 hormones are negated, so you continue to feel hungry, and you never feel satisfied.
If you wonder why you gain weight so easily, this explains it – when insulin levels spike, your hormones tell your body to 1) eat more sugar, and 2) store sugar as body fat.
But all of that said, you CAN take control of your sugar addiction. I’ve done it, I’ve helped countless patients do it, and you can do it too.
Before I share my suggestions today, be on the lookout for next week’s blog post, where I’ll share 10 tips to end your sugar cravings from my new book, GET OFF YOUR SUGAR: 7 Steps to Crush Your Cravings, Boost Immunity, and Fire Up Your Fat-Burning Engine.
Until then, I have the single most important thing you can do to end a sugar addiction. And no, it does not involve going off sugar cold turkey!
My advice is always to add, not take away. Add more of the good to your diet, and good will soon crowd out the bad – in part because good foods will help end your cravings.
And the foods you MOST need to add are foods high in magnesium and other minerals (because again, if you crave sugar, your body is really craving and deficient in magnesium), mostly dark leafy greens like:
By eating more greens every day, and adding in Alkamind Daily Greens and Acid-Kicking Minerals if you’re not taking them already, you’re going to replenish your deficiency in the minerals that naturally take away your body’s cravings for sugar.
DR. DARYL GIOFFRE
Dr. Daryl Gioffre is a longevity expert who uses cutting-edge nutrition to help you uncover the root causes of inflammation in your body, to achieve and maintain an optimal level of health and energy. A former sugar addict turned health machine, he knows firsthand what it takes to overcome adversity and challenges in your health.