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Beating Food and Sugar Addictions
June 6th, 2010 by Patrick

What is the key to beating food and sugar addictions?  How can a person limit themselves in ways that do not make them feel as if they are depriving themselves all the time?

It can be so hard to overcome an addiction because of this feeling that we are depriving ourselves.  It can be really frustrating to live when every day you are miserable because you are denying yourself the things that you really want.  How can a food addict or a sugar addict overcome this state of mind and find real recovery?

Well in the case of healthy eating there are a few suggestions that I have.  One is already a popular philosophy out there and that is to treat refined sugar like it is a drug that you must abstain from entirely.  This means that you would recoil from a piece of cake in the same that a heroin addict would recoil from a syringe that is loaded up with his favorite drug.

Brownies


 photo credit: Fabiana Loturco

So if you do this, then you deprive yourself of all refined sugars, and almost completely eliminate most carbs from your diet.  At first this will be depressing for most sugar addicts.  But if you stick with it and don’t cheat at all, then eventually your body will readjust and realize that you are not going to feed it the sugar that you crave.  You will stop craving sugar at that point as your body readjusts to your new diet.

Some people have found good success with this approach of treating sugar like a drug, while others cannot make it work for themselves.  Luckily, there are many different approaches to find a healthy diet and achieve your weight loss goals.

Another approach is to find some sort of diet and stick to it, such as those set up by weight watchers and such programs.  If you follow these types of programs down to a tee and do not cheat at all, you will get good results.  Of course, doing so is incredibly difficult, and most people will complain that they do not get big enough portions, or that they remain hungry all day, and so on.

I think there is something to be said for starting in a whole other direction, however, and using exercise as a means of redesigning your lifestyle.  How does this work?  Basically, you have to commit to daily exercise, and put it as a priority above everything else in your life.  Then, you have to push yourself to increase the intensity of that exercise over time.  If you do these two things, your life, your situation, and your addiction to sugar will get better.

Howe does this work?  Let’s say you start by walking.  Go outside and walk for 10 minutes away from your home.  Turn around and walk back.  Do this every single day, and keep increasing it, very slowly, over time.  I would say keep going until you can easily walk for an hour.  Then increase the pace.  Keep increasing until you are at a fast walk, anything faster and you would be jogging.  You can stop here and never run or jog and still experience life-changing results.  But if you are in good health then you might move on to running or jogging eventually as well.

If you do this then you will train your body to eat healthier foods.  How?  Because when you eat junk and then try to exercise, it will feel terrible, and you will start to alter your diet to give you better fuel.  This will happen naturally as you continue to exercise and work out more.

Just another approach to a very tough addiction.  Good luck.


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