Tag Archives: addiction

Allergy

What Got Us Into This Mess?

What Got Us Into This Mess? 

From the beginning of time, the taste of sweetness has appealed to human beings and attracted us.  We read in scripture of eating locusts and wild honey; we read of Samson killing the lion and eating the honey inside the carcass.  We read of a “land flowing with milk and honey,” and that manna had the taste of “wafers made with honey.”  So it’s obvious that sweet taste is something we desire, and something we seek to eat.  Even Eve was tempted with a fruit that was delicious and desirable.

But it’s only recently (as in the past couple of hundred years), and even more recently (since “fast food” was developed), that sweet taste–and with it, refined sugar and sugar substitutes, as well as genetically modified sugar beets and chemical sweeteners–have gained footage in the food dollar.

So how did we get into this mess?

We now know the connections between sugar consumption and Diabetes Type II.  We know that obesity has skyrocketed.  Food processors have cut back on fat content and added sweeteners to compensate.  Even school-aged children are showing signs of addiction to sugar.  What chance do the rest of us have?  And how (if it is possible) can we take the reins back into our hands and get our sugar addictions under control?

Answers in History

 sugarcone

At one time, sugar was a rare commodity.  Either you found a bees’ nest, or you kept the blackstrap molasses when the sugar beets or sugar cane were crushed.  Sugar in colonial times sold in small, compressed cones that looked like the picture above.

See the little “nippers” on the side of the plate?  That’s how sugar was apportioned.  A tiny nip of the sweet cone, and people could sweeten their lemonade.  Sugar was sold in pharmacies, along with other drugs.  And a cone like this would last a very long time.  People relied upon the natural, healthy sweetness of fruits to satisfy their sweet tooth.  The taffy pulls, baked cakes, and cookies were either made with honey or molasses as a rule, and they were for rare and special occasions.

Perhaps that is one factor that brought us to this point.  We have inherited from our ancestors the sense that sweetness is a rare and special treat, and in an effort to compensate for the other areas where we perceive ourselves to fall short, we make a batch of brownies, or a plate of cookies to take to a neighbor.  We take our kids out for fast food, and their meal contains a sweet dessert.  Meals out offer the inevitable dessert menu.

Sweetness bombards us.  It’s at every party, every celebration; every occasion.  It is our perceived key of kindness.

 So What Can We Do?

So what are we to do?

Somewhere, in all of this, there is an answer.  If we can look upon using sugar in small quantities, as in the little colonial cone, that can help.  If we create an expectation for ourselves, that we will only eat one sweet item–and we premeasure it–we may have the self control to get the sugar addictions under control.  For some of us, we will need to completely quit.  And it is possible to do that.

Even more possible is the ability to create healthy options that satisfy us when we are not hungry.  Our danger zone is when we are past the point of merely being hungry and are approaching ravenous.  Or we may be in trouble when we use the promise of something sweet as an emotional reward.

If you or someone you love faces this issue, you might want to consider the Sweet Freedom from Sugar Training Course.  I’ll be launching this breakthrough program in a few short days.  It has all of the information you need to become free from addiction to sugar.

You may be part of my regular list for the Health Secret. You may be a friend on Facebook.  You may be a patient of mine, or already on the list to learn about Sweet Freedom from Sugar when it comes out.

May I ask a favor of you?  I’d like to send you a quick survey (only 12 questions), to learn exactly what the concerns are that you have about sugar.  If sugar IS an issue for you, would you please take a few moments and fill out the survey?  I’ll send it out this week.  And if you already know you want to be free from sugar addiction, please feel free to indicate your interest here.  In the meantime, thank you.

To your dynamic health and energy!  Dr. Stan

sugar sugar addiction sugar cravings sugar ingestion

Top 10 Ways to Know if You Are Addicted to Sugar

Five years ago when I first wrote on the effects of sugar and its addictive potential, there were a lot of questions and doubts that sugar is addictive.  The Harvard Study, printed in the June 26, 2013 issue of The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, puts those questions to rest.

Twelve overweight or obese men age 18 to 35 were given a milk shake on two separate occasions.  The milkshakes were the same calories, nutrients and taste.  One caused high blood sugar and the other did not cause high blood sugar.  A functional MRI done four hours after ingestion of the shake slowed greater brain activity at the pleasure or reward center of the brain, the nucleus accumbens, in the participants who had consumed the milkshakes that caused high blood sugar.  This is the same area that lights up in persons with drug addiction or gambling addiction.

Sugar addiction does exist.  But the addiction isn’t just to sugar.  Anything that will elevate blood sugar (high glycemic index foods) does the same thing—white flour, white potatoes, refined starch.

“But I just love to eat sugar—that doesn’t mean I’m addicted.”  True.  Let’s define some terms.

Urge:  a strong need or desire to have or do something

Craving: a very strong desire for something; intense, urgent, abnormal desire or longing

Addiction: a strong and harmful need to regularly have something or do something; compulsive need for and use of a habit-forming substance characterized by tolerance and by well-defined physiological symptoms upon withdrawal

So…How Do I Know if I am Addicted to Sugar?

If you answer “Yes” to most of the following statements, you are probably addicted to sugar.

1.         I consume sweets, even if I am not hungry, because of cravings.

2.         I find myself constantly eating sweets throughout the day.

3.         I have an increased desire for sweets when I reduce or stop eating them.

4.         My sugar eating causes physical problems, and yet I keep eating it.

5.         When I eat more sugar, my emotions improve.

6.         When sweets are unavailable, I will go find some.

7.         I spend a lot of time feeling sluggish or fatigued from overeating.

8.         I can’t function at my best because of needing to eat sweets.

9.         I need to eat more and more sweets to get the same emotional help I got before.

10. After the first bite, I will binge and eat the whole sack of sweets.

11. (bonus) If I don’t eat sweets, I will be an emotional wreck.

If you are addicted, or feel your cravings are getting out of control, there is help.

We will soon be releasing a highly successful program, Sweet Freedom From Sugar.  It will walk you through the 5 steps to freedom from sugar addiction.  If you would like more details, place your name on the interest list and we will keep you informed as to its release date, probably in the next month.

Dr. Stan Gardner, a Certified Nutrition Specialist, is passionate about helping people reach their peak in health.  His office is in Sandy, UT, and he can be reached at 801.302.5397.  

sugar addiction

Fed Up: The Movie, and My Thoughts

Fed Up—Movie Review

Stan Gardner, MD, CNS

See Fed Up if you want:

  • to understand the true cause of obesity
  • your family to eat better food
  • to understand the power of the processed food industry
  • to realize the government cannot (will not) help you be healthy
  • to understand that health for you and your family must be your personal responsibility

Epidemic of Obesity

 In the US today, 1/3 of Americans are overweight and 1/3 are obese.  At the present rate, in 2 decades 95% of the population will be overweight or obese.  By 2050, 1/3 of the US will have diabetes mellitus, type II.  The next generation of children will be the first generation in the history of the United States that will live shorter than their parents.

 True Cause of ObesityIt’s All Preventable

 Sugar is the cause of obesity, not fat.  There are 600,000 food items in stores; 80% of them have added sugar.  When the NIH and the Senate Committee came up with the “Dietary Goals for the US” in the 1970s and 80s, saying that fat was bad, the food industry doubled the sugar and halved the fat in most foods.  (This supposedly made food healthier, although there was no scientific support for that.  Even after 5 very expensive studies trying to prove that fat was bad and caused obesity, it could not be proven.  But it remained the prevailing theory.)

 The processed food industry then targeted children in their marketing, and Ronald McDonald entered the scene.  More recent studies have shown that sugar stimulates the brain in the same manner as cocaine and heroin.  Laboratory rats preferred sugar water over cocaine when given a choice.  Sugar is addictive.

 How the Government Contributes to Obesity

 When the World Health Organization (WHO) was ready to release a document  of dietary guidelines restricting sugar intake to 10%, the Bush administration threatened to withdraw $405M support of WHO if the document was released.  It was not printed.

The government subsidizes the processed food industry to the tune of $Billions, much of it through subsidizing corn to make high-fructose corn syrup.  Decades ago when across the board cuts were made to all services, the school lunch program was also cut.  In an effort to stay solvent, schools set up partnerships with fast food establishments and soda pop distributors.  This also provided a source of revenue for the schools.

The Lies that Perpetuate the Obesity Epidemic

 Robert Lustig, MD and neuro-endocrinologist, maintains the food industry is perpetuating three falsehoods to distract Americans from the problem of sugar:

  • Obesity is the issue (the real issue is the metabolic illness associated with obesity, which also is seen in non-obese children.  While 17% of children are obese, more than 50% of children have the metabolic problems that are present in obese children.)
  • A calorie is a calorie.
  • It’s about personal responsibility.  “It’s about how active kids are.”  “Voracious appetites and they don’t exercise enough.”

An Attempt to Change It

Michelle Obama became quite the early advocate for healthy eating and significant changes in the processed food industry.  Then the food industry decided to partner with her in this endeavor.  One and one-half trillion calories were trimmed off foods.  Unfortunately, this only amounted to about 20 calories per day reduction per person.  Her Let’s Move It campaign shifted from moving or changing the food industry, to supplying more healthy food, to more exercise.  The wife of the President of the United States could not move the nation toward healthier food options.

The Junk Food/Processed Foods/Sugar Industries are Using the Same Techniques as the Tobacco Industry Used in the 1950s and 60s

Hundreds of millions of dollars were spent through campaign donations and extremely effective lobbyists to keep the status quo relative to tobacco.  In the 1950s and 1960s the tobacco industry emphasis was on their assertion that the science was uncertain.  The tobacco industry sponsored game shows and cartoons.  Endorsements were made by doctors, dentists and celebrities.  Finally when a 1991 study showed that 6 year olds recognized “Joe the Camel” as much as Mickey Mouse, R.J. Reynolds was told to remove it from their marketing.  (Does any of this sound like the sugar industry politics of today?)  In 2009 the RICO case found the tobacco industry guilty of engaging in a decades-long conspiracy to defraud the American public about the health risks of tobacco.  The future of the tobacco industry presently lies in off-shore production and marketing to developing countries.

 Solutions

 Dr. Mark Hyman was interviewed extensively on the documentary.  He proposes:

  • A 10-day sugar detox diet
  • Taxation on soda pop
  • Eliminate food marketing to kids
  • Make labels more transparent
  • Get rid of all junk food in schools

 Dr. Robert Lustig proposes the following solutions:

  • Warnings on soft drink cans
  • Equal time advertising fresh fruits and vegetables
  • Voluntary agreements to reduce sugar content

 Dr. Gardner’s comments:

 We must assume personal responsibility for our health.  It will start with a diet of real food and no sugar.  Although the WHO wants to limit sugar to 10% of the diet, there is no known minimum need for sugar or carbohydrates.  We will get all the carbohydrates we need through eating good food.

The school lunch only accounts for 180 of the 1095 meals (16%) your children will eat.  You may send lunch to school, or your child may choose healthier food (which is becoming more available), but even if your children eat school lunch, you still control the vast majority of their meals.

 Although the movie did not bring out exactly how and why sugar causes fat, it is an important concept.  If you were on a 2000 calorie diet and those calories were burned throughout the day, you would feel good because that is what your body needs.  If you eat 500 calories as sugar, the normal insulin response would drive those calories into the storage form called fat, because the body does not need that rapid infusion of glucose into the body.  The other 1500 calories would be normally burned throughout the day, but you don’t feel good because your body needs and utilizes 2000 calories.  You eat 500 more calories to feel good.  Thus you gain fat (and weight).

The movie Fed Up is an excellent resource for information about our health.  Its message will disturb you, but it is well worth watching, and it may transform YOUR health.  Bon appetit!

 If you would like to know more about Dr. Gardner’s philosophies, visit him at his website keystohealing.net.  His office number is (801) 302-5397.  He will soon be releasing his popular Sweet Freedom From Sugar program.  If you would like to be placed on the interest list so you will be informed of the starting date, visit sweetfreedomforme.com

sugar addiction sugar cravings

Sugar: Not So Sweet!

One of the problems with regulating sugar consumption is being able to identify the foods that contain it. It’s not always obvious.  Many foods, however, do contain sugar.  For example, you maybe surprised to learn that: 1. Many meat packers feed sugar to animals prior to slaughter.  This improves the flavor and color of cured meat. 2. Sugar (in the form of corn syrup and dehydrated molasses) is often added to hamburgers sold in restaurants to reduce shrinkage. 3. The breading on many prepared foods contains sugar. 4. Before salmon is canned, it is often glazed with a sugar solution. 5. Some fast-food restaurants sell poultry that has been injected with a flavorful honey solution.

Lick the Sugar Habit

Nancy Appleton, PhD

My comments: Sugar is a toxin.  A toxin is any substance that interferes with the normal metabolism of the body.  As we explore Dr. Appleton’s book, the damaging effects of this substance (or substances) will be amply obvious.  If you or your loved ones have found yourself addicted to sugar and need help, please sign up on the interest list for my groundbreaking and amazingly successful program, Sweet Freedom from Sugar.  Just go to www.sweetfreedomforme.com and you will get word as soon as it is ready to launch.

depression

YOU and How You View Yourself

A commitment to body-respect is an essential step toward feeling and looking your best.  Women who like themselves are irresistible and fun to be around, regardless of their size.  It’s also important to remember that respecting yourself will actually help you reach your optimal size.  That’s because the feelings associated with self-respect create a metabolic milieu in your body that is conducive to optimal fat burning.  By contrast, the metabolic processes associated with unresolved emotional stress tend to keep excess body fat firmly in place.

Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom

Christiane Northrup, MD

Dr. Gardner’s comments:  Acceptance of where you are is a critical step in moving toward where you want to be.  Self-deprecation will never take you to your lofty aspirations. Today hold your head high and take one step closer to where you want to be. 

diabetes Type 2

Type II Diabetes

A reader writes: I am a type II diabetic. I have had everything under control for five years and
all of a sudden I have gained 35 lbs. I eat ice cream and chocolate in huge
amounts daily. Sugar cravings. I just do not understand. My A1C has been 5-6
and now it is over 7. Help!

My response: You have already identified your problem–sugar intake raises blood sugar and insulin. Your insulin resistance is worse since starting this sugar binge. Insulin blocks your body’s ability to break down fat and utilize fat for energy, and it causes the body to convert glucose into fat for storage. Your fasting glucose levels have probably risen from 90 to 110 before to the present levels of 130 to 160, while your fasting insulin is probably in the teens or 20s (the ideal should be 5 or below). Treatment starts with stopping sugar intake, and reducing all carbohydrate intake to 60 to 100 grams per day. We have available a Sweet Freedom From Sugar program that has helped others get over their sugar addictions and cravings. Let us know if you are interested and we will put you on the interest list.

soda pop

Another Thing Wrong with Soda Pop

What’s another thing wrong with soda pop?

Soda pop either has sugar, or a “diet” sweetener, both of which cause you to gain weight. Additionally, both sugar and aspartame (or NutraSweet) cause inflammation in the body. 

Aspartame is actually wood alcohol with an aspartate and phenylalanine group (amino acid) hooked onto it.  The wood alcohol is detoxified in the liver into formaldehyde, which is a cancer-inducing agent.  It is also the preservative used in cadavers in medical school.  Formaldehyde is further broken down into formic acid, which is the highly inflammatory and painful sting of the fire ant

Sugar is not only inflammatory; it also induces insulin resistance, which means insulin levels increase in the body.  Insulin is one of the most inflammatory substances that the body makes.  Sugar causes tooth decay, behavioral changes, addiction, and a host of other health challenges.  It feeds candida, it feeds cancer: it’s just not good for us.  And yet, we are inundated with sugary “goodies” constantly. 

Soda pop is available everywhere.  It’s wise to avoid it.  

addiction sweet cravings

Ease on Down: How to Curb Sweet Cravings

What can I do to not crave sweets?

The sweet taste is addictive, so any sweet taste will prolong the craving or drive. Sugar is just the most plentiful sweet we have, and we are surrounded by it. It is present in almost all social gatherings, and it is quick and easy to take on the run. Even fruit may be sweet enough to maintain the cravings.

As with any addiction, the longer you stay away from it, the less control it has over you. But, also like any addiction, the first bite brings back all the cravings again. It all starts with a decision that you won’t have any more. That’s the first and hardest step you will ever take. Then you need to figure out what to do in the future. Here are some suggestions:

1. Take your own non-sweet dish to the party

2. Always have nuts or a snack with you at all times to eat when you have no other choice, and the temptation is great.

3. Find like-minded people to associate with that will provide support.

Allergy

Freedom from Sugar Addiction

I am interested in the program you are putting together helping people conquering their addiction to sugar.

We are just completing our second time through the quite successful training program Sweet Freedom from Sugar, a five month step-by-step program with information, support, DVDs, and daily workbook, that has worked miracles in some people’s lives.  Here are a few tips:

  • 1. Some people have cravings and addictions for sugar. There is even a highly successful 12-step program called Food Addicts Anonymous that is designed after the successful Alcoholics Anonymous program.
  • 2. Sugar substitutes and fruit only maintain the true sugar addiction and also must be eliminated to get over the addiction.
  • 3. Generally there is a reduction in the cravings after about 2 weeks off sweets, but the cravings last for months and months.
  • 4. You can overcome your cravings.
  • 5. Resumption of your first sweet after months of abstention will often bring a return of the cravings.
  • 6. Never give up.

We will put you on the list of those who want to be informed when the next program will be released. In the past we have offered it as a 5 month program with a monthly charge of $39.97.  Would you be interested in a one-time charge and receiving all the material in one shipment? Please let us know of your interest.

sugar cravings

What to Do About Sugar Cravings

I have been off white sugar and desserts since last April, but still crave them terribly. What can I do to eliminate the cravings? The smell of chocolate, especially brownies, still is so hard to resist.

Usually the craving for sugars disappear in the first 2 weeks, although people with true addictions may take read more »