Two of the worst pieces of advice concerning diabetes and weight loss is to eat a low-fat diet and to choose artificial sweeteners. Believe it or not, these are the very things still being told to people by so-called “health experts” today. I’m here to tell you if you are being told these things by your healthcare advisor, don’t walk but RUN from them! Let’s take a look at the Why and What strategies you can take to kick your sugar cravings, stop the pain and burn that stubborn fat.
Sugar and Artificial Sweeteners: Perfect Ingredients for Inflammation and Disease
Point blank, sugar is poison. Artificial sweeteners are even deadlier. The more sugar we consume, the more insulin our bodies must produce and insulin is highly inflammatory. Sugar is then stored as adipose or visceral fat and this kind of fat is not only toxic but inflammatory. This creates the perfect storm for disease to occur. If we want to avoid pain, insulin resistance/diabetes and weight gain we need to limit or avoid refined carbohydrates especially (breads, grains, pasta, processed baked goods, and sweets). Eat more fruits, veggies, healthy fats and protein and move. (Find an activity you love and do that). To be more specific, incorporating High-Intensity Interval Training has shown to be highly effective at healing the body.
The most effective way to reverse these conditions and stop inflammation and sugar cravings in its tracks is to adopt a low carbohydrate diet or perhaps a ketogenic way of eating. Check it out here.
Do NOT avoid healthy fats like wild-caught salmon, grass fed butter, grass-fed beef, avocados, organic, cold-pressed virgin coconut and olive oils. These healthy fats not only fight inflammation but also are necessary for the regulation of hormones like insulin. Now let’s talk a bit about artificial sweeteners and why you should avoid them at all costs.
Why You Should Never Consume Artificial Sweeteners
Artificial sweeteners not only make you crave sugar by altering pleasure chemicals in your brain, but have also been linked to insulin resistance/diabetes (by attacking beta cells of the pancreas), obesity, and even cancer. The idea of avoiding sugar and being “zero calories” alternatives is very misleading and quite dangerous. Studies have shown the very things we were promised we’d be avoiding by choosing artificial sweeteners are actually increased significantly (Diabetes/insulin resistance, sugar cravings, obesity). The “zero calories” myth is actually a trap. You see, what they don’t tell you is by consuming these artificial sweeteners you are causing the brain to overload its pleasure center creating “super cravings” for sweetness.
For instance, Saccharin (Sweet n’ Low) and Sucralose (Splenda) are 600 times sweeter than sugar and are both said to cause sweetness addiction, overeating, and obesity. Sucralose, which is a chlorinated compound was discovered by accident because of its sweet taste and was an ingredient in an insecticide compound. Chlorinated products like this are said to stockpile in the kidneys, intestine, and liver. Sucralose, in particular, is classified as a carcinogen (cancer-causing ingredient). These artificial sweeteners do extreme damage to our intestinal health and kill off the friendly bugs in our gut causing systemic inflammation, all kinds of metabolic disorders, and negatively affect our immune system. So, do yourself a favor. Stop drinking diet sodas, avoid the processed foods and just eat real food.
Strategies to Kick the Sugar Cravings and the Benefits that Follow
Your best bet is to avoid sugar and especially artificial sweeteners completely. Choose natural sweeteners like raw honey, stevia, and xylitol, and even these should be used in moderation.
Eat plenty of healthy fats and real food, exercise and balance stress levels.
Do that, and you will kick the sugar cravings, fan the flames of inflammation/pain, balance blood sugar levels and maintain a healthy weight. It may be tough at first, but over time your body will begin to detoxify itself and crave life-abundant, healing foods. Applying a modified ketogenic way of eating is especially effective for healing the body by reducing pain/inflammation, balancing blood sugar levels and reversing diabetes.
Never forget that the body has an exceptional ability to heal itself if given what it needs. Your journey to good health can start with your next meal.
Get started by downloading your Healing Foods Checklist and Shopping Guide now!
Dr. Joe Tatta, DPT, CCN