|10 Tips for Wise Sugar Use |
The following is one in an ongoing series of columns entitled Staying Healthy Tips by Elson M. Haas MD.
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From my discussion in the article about the Glycemic Index, quick-absorbing sugars are more of a concern with our blood sugar and energy. It may be helpful to consume some protein, such as a few nuts or nut butter, when eating some simple sugar like fruit, or easily assimilated carbohydrates like rice, bread, or potatoes. Remember to read those labels in the stores; there are loads of hidden sugars in items you wouldn't even think should have added sweetener, and concentrated sugars in some juice drinks.
If we do crave sugar, there are several supplements that can help us utilize the sugar better as well as reduce our desire for those sweets. These include the B vitamins (25-50 mg of most twice daily), vitamin C (500-1,000 mg twice daily, calcium (250-500 mg), and magnesium (150-300 mg). Chromium helps our body utilize the sugars more efficiently; it is usually supplemented in 100-200 mcg twice daily, in the morning and about 3pm. Also, the amino acid, L-glutamine (500-1,000 mg 2 to 3 times daily), helps to feed the brain and reduce sugar (and alcohol) cravings.
Drinking plenty of water is crucial to keep the body balanced and lessen cravings and addictions. An alkalinizing diet reduces cravings as well and helps with detoxification. Also, regular exercise does the same. Don't be afraid to move that body for fitness with active aerobics and weight training. Yoga stretches can also give you inner and outer strength to be your true self. Walking in Nature is another way to get in touch with your inner nature and gain your will power.
There are usually emotional issues around excess sugar and carbohydrate consumption, and being overweight. Be open to explore these areas as you attempt to heal your habits and create a healthier body and weight. A support group or a counselor can help in this healing process. Good luck and make wise choices!
SNACCs Review (Sugar, Nicotine, Alcohol, Caffeine and Chemicals)
- Sugar – Review above and when you crave those sweets, stop and ask yourself, "What do I really need?" Breakfast cereals are typically loaded with sugar, seemingly instant energy, yet setting up the drug effect. Check your labels.
- Nicotine – Cigarettes are treated with chemicals and sugar as well. In this season of the lungs, isn't this a good time to free them?
- Alcohol – How much can you handle? How do you feel the next morning after drinking? Be cautious and try to take breaks some days and use alcohol wisely for celebration. Choose organic drinks when possible.
- Caffeine – Is your cup of coffee chemically treated? What about what you add to your cup? How much sugar and milk do you use? Try some variations on your morning cup of Java? I have many listed in The Detox Diet.
- Chemicals – They are everywhere. We are exposed in the stores where we shop, at work, around many homes, and when traveling. Be cautious and protect yourself with good nutrition and the right supplements. See my article on travel tips or my books, Staying Healthy with Nutrition or The Staying Healthy Shopper's Guide.
Make a plan. Allow yourself a minimum of celebrating and spread it out over the upcoming months. Make sure you don't get tossed about on a sea of other's decisions, from which they may suffer and have you share their symptom profile after they have succumbed and damaged their own health, and yours too! This is your responsibility. Who and how you are is up to YOU!
About The Author
Elson M. Haas, MD
is founder & Director of the Preventive Medical Center of Marin (since 1984), an Integrated Health Care Facility in San Rafael, CA and author of many books on Health and Nutrition, including ...more