live with physical challenges.
I am NOT a DOCTOR!!! I don't even play one on TV!!! It is my goal to live a more healthy lifestyle. Living well and being happy is what this blog is all about.

"Nothing,' wrote Tolstoy, 'can make our life, or the lives of other people, more
beautiful than perpetual kindness."

- Gretchen Rubin

I write about my own experiences and what works (or does not) for me. Nothing I write is to be taken as medical advice.

Only your health care provider, personal physician,Disclaimer:
I am not a doctor - I don't even play one on TV! This
or pharmacist can provide you with advice on what is safe and effective for your unique needs.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Confessions of a Former Sugar Addict

What substance is white, crystal-like and more addictive than cocaine?  It's sugarMost of us do not have to eat very much (cakes, pies, cookies, etc.) before we get hooked.  That's why I have to keep my home free of sugar and all that "junk" food.  Heaven help me if I'm away from home and indulge in one cookie.  I find myself sneaking back for seconds (thirds, fourths...)  I'm absolutely mad about sugar!

When you read a label, the sweetener will not always be called sugar.  It might be called high-fructose corn syrup.  Did you know that sugar accelerates chronic inflammation in the body?  This is not a swelling that is apparent visually, but a progression called inflammation that takes place over years.  Inflammation is what causes signs of aging and a whole host of diseases including diabetes, cancer and heart disease. 

It's interesting, when sugar is eliminated from the diet, the progression of inflammation is greatly reduced.  That stuff that tastes so sweet is really not so sweet for us! 

Sugar induces cell death.  Essential nutrients that your body needs are blocked by sugar.  So, if you subscribe to the theory that you can have something healthy along with something not-so-healthy and it's all going to balance out - (the diet soda and candy bar theory) - better think twice.  When you eat the healthy stuff, don't you want it to get to your cells to make them healthier?  That's kind of the point, isn't it?  When you eat healthy - make sure you are eating healthy - not healthy plus a little bad. 

Cancer cells survive because of sugar. Let me say that again. Cancer cells would not grow and multiply if they did not have sugar to feed on. If you needed an excellent reason to cut sugar out of your diet - there it is!

Sugar aggravates PMS in women.  That's just what we all need, right?  Everyone runs to grab a candy bar when we should be running it off at the gym.  If I had a dime for every time I've heard a woman making the excuse she is eating chocolate to ease PMS symptoms - I'd be more wealthy than Donald Trump!   

Sugar slows your metabolism.  It binds with other food and is very slow getting through the gastrointestinal tract.  A better bet is something that is higher in fiber, lower in sugar.  Fiber acts as a natural cleanse for the gastrointestinal tract and is used to detox all the time.  Adding sugar to any food for the purposes of a cleanse is counterproductive.  Before you use any product for a cleanse, read the label carefully.

Have you ever had a kidney stone?  Sugar can lead to the formation of kidney stones.  As diabetics we need to make an effort to protect our kidneys as much as possible.  Drink plenty of water and again, avoid the sweet stuff.

The "simple sugars" such as candy and colas raise your blood sugar levels much faster than the complex carbohydrates.  Leaving all the true "junk food" completely alone is a good idea.  Complex carbohydrates can be eaten in strict moderation and always with a larger serving of lean protein.  Always eat protein first.

Sugar can be a contributing factor in Alzheimer's disease.  It makes sense, given it basically blocks anything good from getting where it needs to go.  Sugar turns your blood into syrup!  It's not only awful for your brain, but your heart as well.  Heart attacks happen because God did not design the heart to pump syrup, but to pump blood.  When blood gets thick and sticky, the heart has to work harder to get it through and it gets tired.  This is why diet, exercise and water consumption is so important in taking care of diabetes.  Keeping blood sugar managed is the number one priority.  Avoiding severe highs and lows is the goal for good blood glucose management.  

Sugar causes depression.  Think about the last time you tested high.  How did you feel?  Diabetics know that this is true.  I have friends who eat something with sugar in it and they start bouncing off the walls!  Their energy level zips right through the roof!  But when I eat sugar I just want to find a quiet corner,  curl up and go to sleep!  I just want to sleep when my blood sugar is crazy high.  I begin to feel a little weepy and frankly, depressed. 

The very first HbA1c I had taken was a whopping 9.6!  I have absolutely no intention of going back to where I used to be.  Sugar is addictive, but the good news is, addiction can be overcome with faith, determination and drive.  I do not miss sugar in the least, and I'll tell you why. 

I'm a totally different person than I used to be.  I feel so much better without my drug of choice!  I have hope that I don't think I've ever had before and for the first time in a very long time, I feel positive about myself and what I can do and where I can go in life!

Here's the challenge:  Read labels, toss sugars (even the sneaky ones that are not called "sugar").  Keep a journal and note your changes for a week of sugar-free living.  You will feel better.  Prove me wrong.    

I have absolutely no pleasure in the stimulants in which I sometimes so madly indulge. It has not been in the pursuit of pleasure that I have periled life and reputation and reason. It has been the desperate attempt to escape from torturing memories, from a sense of insupportable loneliness and a dread of some strange impending doom.  - Edgar Allan Poe

Does a spoonful of sugar really help the medicine go down?  Well, obviously not - but we all remember that great song from "Mary Poppins", don't we?  Julie Andrews was terrific in this musical!


Today is BE LATE FOR SOMETHING DAY!!!!!!!!!!!  To be perfectly honest, I could celebrate this day every day!  My spouse is a polar opposite of me - he has to be at least a half hour early everywhere (annoying, right?) 

I've been known to be fashionably late on more than one occasion.  I will definitely embrace this special day with both hands!  Let's see...  do I have anywhere I have to be today???





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