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Thread: Sugar Addict

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    Senior Member tntom's Avatar
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    Sugar Addict

    Last year I lost 50lbs it was not that hard. Now I am trying to keep it off. Now that is HARD. I have allways liked sweet stuff but it seems to me the last few weeks that I may have a problem. I get these cravings and I can't say no. This may not sound bike related but if I put the weight back on it will kill my riding. Has anyone else ever been through this and if so what will help? The last thing I want to do is go back to were I was.

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    Senior Member kenseth03's Avatar
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    I understand what your going through. Pepsi is my biggest dieting problem. I am going through the same cravings as you are. I try diet Pepsi and it works for a short while, then I get these cravings and just have to have it. I wish I had the answer to solve our problem, but at least you can know your not alone.
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    Senior Member tntom's Avatar
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    I think if I could go one week I could get off the sugar. When I get off I think I will just stop eating sweet stuff for good. I stoped drinking mountain dew and I was drinking about 6 a day. Have not drank anything but water in over 2 years. It seems to me it is a mind set. But I am in a battle right now. You know what as of right now I am off the sugar. I will check in and let you know how I am doing. If I don't someone ask me please. Tom stoped smoking I can stop sugar.

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    Pedaled too far. Artkansas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kenseth03 View Post
    I understand what your going through. Pepsi is my biggest dieting problem. I am going through the same cravings as you are. I try diet Pepsi and it works for a short while, then I get these cravings and just have to have it. I wish I had the answer to solve our problem, but at least you can know your not alone.
    When I peaked on Pepsi, I was drinking a little over 4 liters per day. I took myself off Pepsi by cutting it with sparkling water, more and more over the course of the month, giving myself a week at each level till I finally went to pure sparkling water.

    But that left me to discover that below the Pepsi problem there was also a sugar problem. That's what I get for being put on a largely sugar oriented formula at 3 days of age. (1950's nutrition at its best)

    I'm having to learn to eat all over again. I eat a lot less sugar than I used to, but it's still a struggle. I've read a lot of books like "Sugar Blues" and "Sugar Busters" and currently "The Craving Cure". But no answers yet. But I have empathy with you. Somedays I can ignore the cupcake, some days I eat it.
    Last edited by Artkansas; 04-09-08 at 10:30 PM.
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    Senior Member tntom's Avatar
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    This is like nuts. I am talking about when I get started I will eat 7 or 8 candy bars. It's like there is not enough sugar in the world. I have not put on but 5 or 6 lbs so far but if I don't stop I will be 260 again.

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    Don't replace the sugar with simple carbs like white flour-based products. For me, these things cause me to get sugar cravings as bad as the sugar itself.

    I try to only do complex carbohydrates or the low carb route. It makes it much easier to control my eating.
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    Real Human Being wild animals's Avatar
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    it might sound lame, but sometimes if you eat something sweet that isn't terrible for you, it can help. i have a real sweet tooth but i can only handle so much, so if i have some grapes, i wont want candy as much because i know i'll go into sugar overload. sometimes i do it anyway but sometimes it helps.

    are you trying to make some other changes in your life? they say that people can usually only handle so much "sheer force of will" at a time. so if you're closely watching your food intake, you'll probably find it harder to closely watch your budget. or if you're budgeting, you might be more likely to overeat. or even just stress could do it. i go through phases of drinking pop (i hate it for a year, then for a month or two i drink it too much), but i've been in a pop phase for the past 6 months because my job is so much more stressful than it was last year. it's like, "i just want a stupid pop, so let me have the stupid pop." maybe there is something going on that doesn't seem related to food at all on the surface.
    Go until you stop, then take a break.

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    Bikezilla Mazama's Avatar
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    Have you had your blood checked? Maybe you are experiencing low blood sugar cravings or diabetes.
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    Senior Member breadbin's Avatar
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    I'm like you too some days i'm great and others I can't help myself. I was gonna point you to www.radiantrecovery.com but you probably saw that already. You sound like you've read up alot on the whole sugar sensitivity thing. I would suggest keeping a food diary along with a diary of exercise, stresses, mood etc and try and work out a pattern. When are the days you can say no to the cupcake and when are the days you can't. See if there's any links that you wouldn't have spotted normally.

    A quick history on my situation.
    I started a food diary when i started the radiantrecovery steps (couple of months ago) and noticed i was starving myself during the day trying to lose weight and then when i got home i'd stuff myself. I'd literally eat the equivalent of a dinner while i was making the dinner! Without the food diary I didn't realise i was going 7 hours without anything twice a day and only a little tiny sambo for lunch! Literally starving myself. i started eating 2 extra sambos each day about 200 calories each between my meals and i'm doing so much better on the cravings front. They seem to be gone - most days but i still can't get out as much as i'd like to:-(. oh yeah I also added protein powder to my breakfast;-)
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    If you have a sweet tooth, but want something with some good fibre and lower calories, try the Fibre One bars, or something along those lines.

    Have you recently been checked for diabetes? The doctors have checked me and I don't, and I have similar cravings. If I get a craving, I will buy a small bag of plain M&M's. Then pull one out and not have another one for 5 minutes. Then when I am still craving sugar after the entire package is gone (hours later) I should be at a time for a meal or a healthy snack. We buy the Fibre One bars by the box (20 per box) now, and we also buy Quaker Chewy Bars buy the box (40 per box). Once you find the bar you like, then you can buy them by the box and save a lot of money.

    Is this a craving you get at work, or at home? Is this a craving you get while doing nothing at home (reading, watching tv), or when you are busy doing chores around home? I find that most of my cravings are when I am being what I call lazy (watching TV or reading a magazine). If I am busy, the cravings are rarely around, that is why I do a lot of little projects, or pick up a new hobby, or learn a new instrument, to keep myself busy and my mind occupied.

    Do you like fruit? I cut up pineapple and put it in small containers and take one with me and put in my desk when I go to work in the morning. A small piece of pineapple really is good and it helps me get my fruit level up that is one of my weak points.
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    Senior Member lil brown bat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tntom View Post
    This is like nuts. I am talking about when I get started I will eat 7 or 8 candy bars. It's like there is not enough sugar in the world. I have not put on but 5 or 6 lbs so far but if I don't stop I will be 260 again.
    It sounds like a visit to a doctor might be in order.

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    Downtown Spanky Brown bautieri's Avatar
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    Munch a couple graham crackers or have a few tablespoons of honey. That usually beats the sugar craving for me. Another good thing to try is a Gala apple. They got a satisfying crunch plus they are really sweet tasting.

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    Senior Member tntom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wild animals View Post
    it might sound lame, but sometimes if you eat something sweet that isn't terrible for you, it can help. i have a real sweet tooth but i can only handle so much, so if i have some grapes, i wont want candy as much because i know i'll go into sugar overload. sometimes i do it anyway but sometimes it helps.

    are you trying to make some other changes in your life? they say that people can usually only handle so much "sheer force of will" at a time. so if you're closely watching your food intake, you'll probably find it harder to closely watch your budget. or if you're budgeting, you might be more likely to overeat. or even just stress could do it. i go through phases of drinking pop (i hate it for a year, then for a month or two i drink it too much), but i've been in a pop phase for the past 6 months because my job is so much more stressful than it was last year. it's like, "i just want a stupid pop, so let me have the stupid pop." maybe there is something going on that doesn't seem related to food at all on the surface.
    I am a bigtime stress eater. Food is a drug.
    Last edited by tntom; 04-10-08 at 07:03 AM.

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    Senior Member tntom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mazama View Post
    Have you had your blood checked? Maybe you are experiencing low blood sugar cravings or diabetes.
    Yes. Things were good. But I have been thinking about having it checked again.

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    I don't know how I ever stumbled across this page but:

    http://www.naturopathyworks.com/pages/cravings.php

    I have a sweet tooth as well and the last thing on my mind is gnawing on a leg of lamb or a horseradish root. LOL

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    Allegheny Mtns of WV Paco97's Avatar
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    I've gone from drinking 2 liters of soda a day, to 1 glass a day. The one thing that helps me is Propel water. It still has some sugar, but not nearly as much as soda. I'm about 8 weeks of cutting my soda back, and am doing great.
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    Senior Member lil brown bat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tntom View Post
    I am a bigtime stress eater. Food is a drug.
    To you, right now, it is. It doesn't have to stay that way.

    There's a story that was told to me by a guy who did some zen meditation training at a Buddhist monastery in South Korea. At one point there was an opportunity for people to ask questions of the temple's abbot. Most people asked for advice in dealing with specific problems in their life, and one woman asked with problems she was experiencing with trying to meditate, because people she owed money to were constantly hounding her for payment. The abbot said, "Why are you meditating? If you owe these people money, get a job and pay them what you owe them; then meditate."

    What I take from that story is that when most people feel stress, all they want is for the stressful feeling to go away. Obviously dealing with the root cause of the stress is one way to do this -- but it's also usually not the fastest way to deal, and it may lead to even more stress before it leads to less. Then you have all these "quick fix" alternatives that aren't a fix at all -- like drugs, alcohol, food -- but that will make you feel better quickly. The thing that you need to remember is that you don't have some special problem that no one else has. Everybody feels the impulse towards whatever will make them feel good now. Taking the longer, slower, harder route is hard for everybody, not just you. Nobody has a magic bullet or a free pass -- the hard way is hard for everybody, and nobody can teach you the "trick" to make it easy for you.

    If you've identified yourself as a stress eater, counseling might be helpful. It won't make it easy, but a good therapist can help you to identify triggers and behaviors, which is the first step to not letting them rule your life. Or you can set out to identify them on your own, and consciously make different choices. But don't spend too too long on self-analysis -- you want to understand yourself and what makes you jump, but you can't just consider that in the abstract, you have to translate it into action. Your "sweet tooth" has been given free rein for a long time, and you may never be entirely free of it. But habit is powerful, for both good and ill, and if you can drive yourself into healthier habits and just stay there for a while, and not expect it to feel good right away, they will become habit. Cut out the negative by filling your life with the positive. Actively seek out the apple; that way you won't crave the candy bar as much. Actively seek out the opportunity to exercise; that way you won't have idle time to sit on the couch.

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    Real Human Being wild animals's Avatar
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    hey, lil brown bat, have you lost a lot of weight? if you did, did you use mindfulness as part of your method?
    i feel like i have grown 100,000,000,000x since i started learning that a kneejerk reaction to unpleasant circumstances is maybe not the best route to take, but things like being hungry, or being tired, or whatever, are usually so strong and internal that it doesn't even occur to me to treat them with mindfulness. i'm not sure if it has occurred to me until now. (maybe because i am not paying attention.)

    anyway your post was awesome and helpful. i'm curious if it's worked for you (or anyone else here) in practice.
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    Try things like Sugar Free Jello, Sugar Free Fudge Pops, Sugar Free Skinny Cow Ice Cream Cakes etc. I have a HUGE sweet tooth and have been able to lose 25lbs by switching to these items. I can now have an ice cream cake after supper that is sugar free, low calorie and still tastes great. My husband didn't even realize it wasn't the real thing.

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    Senior Member breadbin's Avatar
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    if only it was that easy;-) i defo agree with you about getting to the root of the problem and it can take years and years to find one - if there is one at all. most people are looking for the quick fix - myself included! the thought of undertaking something that could take the rest of your life seems just a bit scary;-) my plan is to exercise enough so as not to worry about eating too much - again nice on paper:-) variety of exercise is great too for me i don't always feel like cycling!
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    Triathlon in my future??? flip18436572's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by breadbin View Post
    if only it was that easy;-) i defo agree with you about getting to the root of the problem and it can take years and years to find one - if there is one at all. most people are looking for the quick fix - myself included! the thought of undertaking something that could take the rest of your life seems just a bit scary;-) my plan is to exercise enough so as not to worry about eating too much - again nice on paper:-) variety of exercise is great too for me i don't always feel like cycling!
    The only quick fix for me is to look at it as a life style change and that I want to make the change for the rest of my life. I will still eat good food at a restaurant, but I rarely will eat at a fast food place. Even when we travel 12 hours in a car, we will stop and make sandwiches or wraps, and take fruit and things with us. I am enjoying life outside of the house, which I think is making me a better person overall, and I am much happier. I am also enjoying music all over again.
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    Senior Member piper_chuck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tntom View Post
    This is like nuts. I am talking about when I get started I will eat 7 or 8 candy bars.
    Where are you getting these from? Do you keep this many at home? Are you feeding a vending machine at work? There are a few treat products that are triggers for me. One way I've found to avoid them is to not have them at home. If it's there, I will eat it.

    Bryers ice cream is one example. The grocery store has a 2 for 1 special on it every other week. When I go I buy 2 or 4 containers, which are usually gone in less than a week. This year I decided to give it up for Lent. Haven't had any since then and so far I've resisted picking up the habit again now that Lent is over.

    Something else I've done recently to help break me of sweets is to make a conscious decision to eat more fruit. Instead of eating at the cafeteria at work, I've been packing my lunch. I bring 3 or 4 pieces of fruit (apples, oranges, bananas, etc) and snack on those instead of going to the vending machine to get a candy bar.

    These two things must be helping a bit because even though I've essentially been off the bike since mid-Feb, due to an allergy problem that's finally been identified, I've lost about 5 pounds.
    Can vegetarians eat animal crackers?

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    Senior Member lil brown bat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by breadbin View Post
    if only it was that easy;-)
    I never said it was easy. My point was that it isn't easy -- for anybody. People who ask, "Why is it so hard for me???" are overlooking the obvious, that it's hard for everybody and you're included. Here's a quote that I keep around to remind me of this. A dojo, btw, is a Japanese martial arts school.

    When a newcomer appears at the dojo door, he really doesn’t need very much, if you come to think about it, to get him inside. He should be in reasonable physical and mental health and be willing to accept what he will encounter with an open mind. In reality, he needs almost nothing else. But in his own mind the new student often arrives believing he has a great many more necessities, and he will come schlepping up with them, even before his training has begun, toting them along like the excess baggage tourists carry with them on a holiday at the beach. The student carries this extra baggage because he has the very human notion that he is special in some way, that he has liabilities or considerations that others do not have…

    The fact is, although your individual needs and shortcomings may seem very important to you, they are not really all that special. Chances are, if you can walk into a dojo under your own power, you are in good enough shape to begin training there. Of course, your asthma or your myopia or lack of flexibility may be a problem. But if you had the opportunity to ask her, you would probably discover that the woman practicing beside you is dealing with chronic arthritis. The man on the other side has a left hip that has a slight congenital deformity, ad the girl behind you suffers from chronic bronchitis. And it’s very likely that they all began their training by thinking their problems were as special as yours.


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    In other words, don't get caught up in all the reasons why it's hard for you. Instead, draw inspiration from all the other people for whom it's also hard, and who are doing it anyway.

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    Senior Member lil brown bat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wild animals View Post
    hey, lil brown bat, have you lost a lot of weight? if you did, did you use mindfulness as part of your method?
    Hey, Wild Animals, good to chat. I have lost weight, but it's only one of the things that have improved as I've gradually been developing a more conscious approach to life -- mindfulness, as you say. Thinking about what I'm doing, thinking about what I'm eating, thinking about how I'm spending my time...when you say it like that, it sounds like endless navel-gazing, or what my brother likes to call "paralysis by analysis", but it's not like that. Maybe "being aware of" is a better way of saying it than "thinking"? Yeah, I like that better. I think a lot of our unhealthy habits come about through a combination of three factors: the easy availability of...not bad stuff, but stuff that's best consumed sparingly (t-bone steaks, television, ice cream, computer games); the innate appeal of such stuff; and not being aware or mindful of how much of these things we're consuming. That's how it's possible for someone to consume an entire bag of chips without really being aware of it until they get to the bottom of the bag, or to spend several hours playing computer games and not notice the time going by until it gets dark and they have to turn on the light. Mindfulness, awareness, is always going to help you realize when things are out of balance.

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    Opt-in Member GreenGrasshoppr's Avatar
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    When I have a craving for sugar, I make myself some herbal tea (my favs are African Nectar and Chamomile Citrus from Mighty Leaf), and I add erythritol or xylitol to it.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erythritol

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Xylitol

    Out of the two, I definitely prefer erythritol

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