Signs You May Be Addicted To Sugar | Things Your Brain Hates

Sugar - Cravings - Anxiety

Do You Have One Sweet Tooth Or A Whole Mouthful?

What are the signs you may be addicted to sugar? Read on to see how many of these scenarios apply to you….

Sugar is a Large Part of Your Diet

You only eat dinner to get to dessert. Sometimes, dessert actually is your entire dinner.

At a buffet, you take your dessert at the same time as the main course because you are scared that it may be gone by the time you return.

You still think of sugar as a special treat – even though you need a treat every few hours.

You Are Ruled by Your Cravings

You can usually set your watch by your sugar cravings….

But sometimes a craving just pounces on you unexpectedly.

Any attempt to ignore the cravings is rewarded with cravings so powerful that they hijack your brain and it is impossible to focus on anything else.

When the cravings hit…

You buy the smallest bar of chocolate because you know you would eat the biggest bar just as fast…

You buy the biggest bar of chocolate because you know you will be back in half an hour if you just buy the small one…

You buy multiple bars of chocolate – one to eat right now at the checkout, one to eat at home, and one to eat when you are on your way back to the store in a few hours to buy more…

Sugar is sweet, but you are not….

You buy things that you can’t easily share with friends….

If you can share them, you wait until you’re on your own before getting them out.

You confiscate sweets from children – and then you eat them.

When you are at a social event, you can’t hear the speeches over the voice in your head willing them to cut the cake.

You are happy to share dessert in a restaurant – but only because you have mastered the art of eating as much of it as possible whilst trying to look like you are giving away the largest share.

At home….

There is no sweet food in your house because you would just keep eating until it was gone or….

There are catering packs of your favourite treats in case you run out.

In a food crisis you would bypass the tinned goods to make sure that you had enough sugar to see you through.

You ‘straighten off’ the edges of desserts until there are no edges left.

When you try to quit….

You go for a Blowout Day and buy all your favourite treats because after tomorrow you know you will never eat them again….

Within minutes of quitting you are eating honey fruit cereal bars….

Within hours you are on diet bars, protein bars or something organic….

You then go for another Blowout and buy all your favourite treats because after tomorrow you know will never eat them again.

You Worry About The Amount of Sugar that You Eat….

But get angry or upset if anyone else suggests you cut back.

All your birthday cards have pictures of cakes on them.

Your friends buy you witty gifts referring to you as a ‘chocoholic’.

Sugar makes you feel bad….

Despite struggling with nausea after eating a cake that was bigger than your head, you know that in a couple of hours you will be back for more.

When you eat sugar you know you are more anxious and irritable. Eating sugar makes you feel a bit edgy.

When you don’t eat sugar you know you are more anxious and irritable. Not eating sugar makes you feel a bit edgy.

You are Tired All The Time… You don’t sleep well.

You have palpitations sometimes or feel panicky. You find it difficult to concentrate. You feel frazzled, unfocused, forgetful.

You want to get off the Sugar Rollercoaster.

 


 

So how did you get on? Did I miss anything? Anybody else had these problems with sugar, cravings and anxiety, brain fog and fatigue or was it just me?? :-0

Is Sugar Addictive? | Things Your Brain Hates

Is Sugar Addictive? It was for me. Bad cravings.Worse Anxiety

Is Sugar Addictive? It was for me. Bad cravings.Worse Anxiety

Is sugar addictive? I think it can be. I think it is for me. It also turned out to be one of the main causes of my anxiety, fatigue, brain fog and mood swings.

Once, when I was about to sit an exam, I brought in a tray of cakes for my fellow students to eat before we were called in to the exam room. Unfortunately we were called in just as I arrived. There was nowhere to leave the cakes so I took them in and put them under my desk, thinking that we could eat them later. But when the exam started I couldn’t think about anything other than that tray of cakes. Everyone else was scribbling furiously but I just couldn’t focus. After a few minutes of panic I picked up the cakes and ate the lot – to the amazement of the invigilators. Then I got cracking and finished the exam.

I never thought of myself as an addict. I mean if I had absolutely had to have the same cake or chocolate bar at the same time each day I would have felt worried. But it is an easy addiction to hide from ourselves because it just blends into our life. Adding a pudding to a meal or snacking on something sweet is just normal behaviour.

No one feels the need to hide a sugar addiction.  You won’t lose your job, shame your family or be shunned by friends. In fact, we can proudly buy cards, t-shirts and mugs promoting us ourselves as ‘chocoholics’. Sugar is fun, it’s ‘naughty but nice’, a treat, a comfort food. It represents love and celebration.

And yet….there were a couple of things that worried me to be honest.

Sugar Blues

I used to buy chocolate bars three at a time. One to eat whilst leaving the shop, one to eat when I got home (or on the way if desperate) and an emergency one to eat a couple of hours later when the sugar cravings hit again, to keep me going whilst I went out foraging for more.

I never bought more than three because I absolutely couldn’t keep anything sugary in the house. Just like in that exam room, it would call me back to the cupboard (just for tiny little bites) until it was gone.

Whenever I tried to cut back on sugar the cravings would increase massively. I would find myself substituting other sugars – ‘this is fine, it’s made with honey!’, ‘Molasses is ok, it’s full of vitamins’. I would turn to those good old stand-bys, the ‘diet’ bars, filled with artificial sweeteners – until I cracked and went back to the sugar again.

Usually I went back to the sugar because I would reason that it was ‘healthier’ than the artificial stuff. I could rationalise that chocolate was full of magnesium and antioxidants so that was ok. From there it was just a small step back to the shortbread.

It worried me. Just a tiny niggle in the back of my head that said that maybe I wasn’t in control. Maybe I actually had a problem.

Sometimes I didn’t eat much in the evenings because of the sugary snacks I’d eaten during the day. Sometimes I’d eat so much sugary food I would feel sick but would still crave it again a few hours later. Sometimes I’d find myself going out of my way just because I needed to buy something sweet.

Time to Say Goodbye to Sugar

The tipping point came when I started to get sick. The more exhausted I became, the worse the sugar cravings were. I’d always tried hard to have a healthy diet – sugar was the only part that I thought was unhealthy. I got my blood sugar tested and it was high. I decided the sugar had to go.

It was very, very hard. I would lie in bed at night, thinking about the sugar that I’d eaten during the day convinced that I was heading for diabetes and vowing to never touch it again…. Then I would get up and eat sugar for breakfast. This carried on for a few weeks until I was saved because I caught flu. I couldn’t get out of bed. I didn’t eat. That break was enough to see me through the worst of the cravings and I haven’t gone back to eating sugar since – almost up to my third year without it now. Which amazes me, given its previous strangle-hold on my Brain.

Back In Control

At first when I was shopping I would pick out the cake or chocolate that I would have bought, but not buy it. I wanted to but I didn’t. Then I went through a phase of avoiding the aisles with the sweet stuff in.  I just couldn’t look at it in case it jumped into my arms.

Now I’m fine. I can walk past the sugary food, I can buy it for other people, I can keep it in the house. I’m not trying to resist it. I have no feelings towards it at all. I never crave it. It no longer even registers as food.

When I look back at the time I spent thinking about sugar, seeking it out, bargaining with myself, justifying it, eating it, feeling bad and worrying about it – yes I think I was addicted. And when people apologise for eating sugar in front of me because they think I’ll feel bad, or tell me that they only eat honey or organic sugar, I wonder if it has the same control over them.

Not everyone who eats sugar becomes addicted. But it’s not a good food choice – especially if you suffer with anxiety. Almost all my clients who had problems with anxiety, had problems controlling sugar cravings.

The good news is that you can rid yourself of your ‘sweet tooth’. You will find that there is a whole new world of food beyond it. I’m glad that I did it. I’m not tempted to go back.

Sugar and You

Please share your experiences below….Are you addicted to sugar? Are you trying to it give up? Have you tried in the past? Have you succeeded? If so, how did you do it? How did it change things for you? If not, what’s stopping you? Does sugar give you cravings or worsen your anxiety?

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