hershey bar

My #1 enemy… I’ll give you a hint, it’s the S word.

My kids would guess Shut-up. While I really don’t like that one either, that’s not it.

I’m talking about Sugar.

What’s the problem with sugar? It makes you crazy! My sweet little kiddos go nuts on sugar. The rush is wild and the crash is worse. Irritable, whiny, tired, difficulty paying attention…Those are just a few things I notice with my kids.

What about me? Here’s what I notice: Cravings, breakouts, energy crashes, trouble sleeping… once I give in, the cravings come on strong. Then I end up on the rollercoaster of high energy followed quickly by a crash, and I feel like I’m dragging myself through the afternoon.

(Notice how eerily similar this sounds to caffeine?)

So, what to do? How do you break free from the hold sugar has on you?

First, you need to be aware of what’s in your food.

Read your labels! 4 grams = 1 teaspoon. It’s really common to see cereals, granola bars and other everyday foods with 12 grams+ per serving. That’s 3 teaspoons right there! The recommended daily amount is less than 10 teaspoons of added sugar per day.

Second, you need to track it and get honest with yourself.

How will you change if you don’t know where you stand? You need to track it. Maybe you’re eating tons of natural sugars without even realizing it. Eating some healthy fruit in the day is fine, but combine that with ketchup, a granola bar, a yogurt, and a mini candy bar and you’ve gone overboard. Use My Fitness Pal or a similar app to track for a couple days so you have an idea of how much sugar you are consuming.

Third, make substitutes for sweetness in your life.

Substitute 100% organic stevia, cinnamon, sweet potatoes, roasted veggies and fresh fruit. They all give you sweetness without the crash of refined sugar treats. It’s amazing how delicious and sweet carrots can be when you get the refined sugar out of your diet.

What would it feel like to make it through Halloween without shoveling down so many mini candy bars that you feel guilty, jittery, and a little sick to your stomach? It’s possible.

You can do it. If you are ready, ditch the sugar cravings with a real food, clean-eating cleanse. 7 days and you will feel amazing.