Sugar addiction is a worldwide epidemic fueled by poor diets that are high in sugar and processed foods.
What I've discovered through my own rehabilitation from sugar addiction is that it requires much more than cutting out sugar from one’s diet to find long-term results.
The key to maintaining recovery from sugar addiction is in eating meals that are not overly sugary, salty, or meat-heavy. It's best to eat a diet that's diverse and high in vegetables, fruits, and grains and low in refined carbohydrates.
Here is a snapshot at what I eat in a day to maintain my rehabilitation from sugar addiction.
Breakfast: Spinach & Avocado Scramble
- 2 eggs
- ½ avocado
- ½ cup of frozen spinach
- ¼ cup low-sodium vegetable stock
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
1. Begin by removing the pit from the avocado. Then remove the fruit from the skin and slice into lengthwise slices.
2. Next, add the spinach and vegetable stock to a nonstick pan heated at medium/medium-high. Cook for about 5 minutes until the spinach is heated completely. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking and add more vegetable stock if needed.
3. While the spinach is cooking, break open the eggs into a bowl and beat them until the yolk and white are combined. When the spinach is cooked through add the olive oil and heat for a few moments.
4. Add the eggs and combine the spinach and eggs together. Stir regularly. When the eggs are cooked through, turn off the heat and transfer the eggs to a plate. Place the avocado on top and enjoy.
Why I eat it: The reason I chose to eat eggs most mornings rather than oatmeal, toast, or any other carbohydrate-heavy breakfast is because carbohydrates turn into sugar in the body.
By avoiding carbohydrates for this meal, I'm keeping my sugar intake low. What I find is that if I keep my sugar intake low, I crave less sugar throughout the day. Basically, the more sugar I have, the more sugar I want, whether it be in the form of carbohydrates, fruit, or desserts.
I want to point out that I only drink two cups of coffee a day. While everyone’s body varies, what I find is two cups is the “sweet spot” for me to prevent a caffeine crash in the afternoon.
A caffeine crash can also cause the body to crave sugar, so staying at two cups a day is how I avoid this. If you experience caffeine crashes that conclude in a sugar binge in the afternoon, I would suggest decreasing your intake until you don't experience this side effect.
Lunch: Sautéed Vegetables with Buckwheat, Quinoa, or Brown Rice
Serves 3 (I make extra servings so I can eat it for lunch the next day)
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil
- ½ white onion, sliced
- 1 carrot, sliced
- 2 zucchini, sliced
- 1 red bell pepper, sliced
- 16 oz. cremini mushrooms, sliced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 teaspoon of Coconut Aminos or Braggs
- Fresh herbs to garnish (some combination of mint, basil, cilantro, parsley, and green onion)
- 1 cup of buckwheat, quinoa, or brown rice
1. In a large saucepan cook either your buckwheat, quinoa, or brown rice. Follow the directions on the package.
2. In a large nonstick sauté pan heat the coconut oil on medium high heat. When the oil is hot, add the onion, carrot, zucchini, and mushrooms, and stir regularly. Cook them for about 5 to 7 minutes before adding the bell pepper. Continue cooking until the vegetables are about 80 percent cooked.
3. Turn the heat down to medium then add the garlic and Coconut Aminos or Braggs. Cook for a few more minutes until the vegetables are cooked throughout. Serve on top of your choice of grain and garnish with the fresh herbs of your choice.
The vegetables in the sauté can be substituted to fit your preferences. However, I would suggest a variety of colors in your vegetable selection. As you can see from what I chose there is red, orange, white, brown, and green.
Why I eat it: It’s a good idea to include a sweet vegetable to satisfy your sweet tooth. Some examples of sweet vegetables are carrots, red bell pepper, yams, and sweet potatoes.
You may notice I didn't list salt in my recipe. I find when I keep my salt intake low, I also crave less sugar. This is because sugar and salt have opposite effects in the body. Remember, the body strives to be in balance so it will crave the opposite food type (either expanding or contracting) to even itself out.
If you find that you want more flavor in your veggies, don’t reach for more Coconut Aminos or Braggs. Instead try adding two or three different types of fresh herbs. Fresh herbs add so much flavor and interest to a dish and they're also great for your health.
Dinner: Salmon With Rainbow Chard
- 4 ounces of salmon
- 1 clove of garlic
- small bunch of rainbow chard (washed and chopped into 2-inch pieces)
- 1 teaspoon of olive oil
- 2 sprigs of green onion (sliced into ¼-inch slices)
- salt and pepper to taste
1. Heat up the olive oil in a nonstick pan on medium heat. While the oil is heating up, season the salmon with salt and pepper. When the oil is heated, add the fish to the pan. Meanwhile, place the chard in a steamer and cook for 5 minutes or until it is tender. Cook the fish for 2 to 3 minutes then turn it over.
2. Add the garlic to the pan and cook the fish for another 2 to 3 minutes or until it is cooked through. When the chard is finished cooking, place it on the plate. Then place the salmon and garlic on top and garnish with the sliced green onions.
Remember to drink eight glasses of water a day and keep your caffeine intake at a moderate level. If you stay on this path, you can maintain your recovery from sugar addiction and keep your risk for obesity, hypertension, high blood pressure, depression, and diabetes at bay.
These recipes are only a few examples of a diet that will keep you satisfied, healthy, and most importantly, not craving sugar. For more like this, you can visit my website, MichelleFreitas.com.