I have cut sugar both ways: gradually and cold turkey... It really depends on where my mental state is at the time how I decide to do it. Either way is hard, but you need to be mentally ready to give up the sweets all together if you're going to go cold turkey. If you think you need time to wean off then be patient with yourself, but also honest about your behaviors... ...The first week is the hardest and most uncomfortable, especially the first 3 days. If you can get through 3 days, you will find those cravings start to subside a bit..Once you make it a couple weeks it starts to become SO much easier. The beginning is always the hardest. You need to retrain your tastebuds... ...Its all about perception. When I am on a 100% clean diet for a long duration of time, there comes a time when green beans taste like candy to me and I could eat them for hours....but if I am off plan and eat badly for a few days straight, initially the sweets will taste like heaven, but then my taste buds come to find these foods as "normal" again and my perception of what tastes "amazing" changes. ...My advice is to cut out sugar as much as possible. Eventually it does get easier, and then when you DO allow yourself treats they will taste like heaven.
Fitness Minutes: (79,213)
12/10/12 2:50 P
I too went cold turkey. But later, I have found out that one can re-introduce the sugar in some limited amount in the diet without causing too much harm. For example I started to eat dark chocolate containing sugar. But compared to before I went cold turkey, my sugar consumption is reduced by a factor of 10, even though it is not zero right now.
Cold Turkey all the way. I don't eat refined sugar, rice, pasta, or potatoes anymore. The sugar I get comes from coconut nectar (because i despise agave), raw honey (not the stuff that comes in the cute bear, but honest to God raw honey), dates and other fruit, Grade B maple syrup which is closer to real syrup than the Aunt Gemima stuff, and stevia where necessary.
When I do eat refined sugar, i feel run down, fatigued and just plain yucky. I want to change my body into a fat burning machine rather than a sugar burning machine. No need to make my pancreas work overtime with lots of crap.
Fitness Minutes: (16,232)
385 12/10/12 9:35 A
I eliminated refined sugar cold turkey for many months before gradually re-introducing in small, occasional quantities later. I felt the cold turkey was necessary for a while, to teach myself discipline and habit change...once I did that and saw serious results, then with small amounts I was able to learn moderation. During the cold turkey, fresh fruit became a good substitute...now, I'm as likely to crave blueberries as chocolate. Different approaches for different folks.
I've had great success with limiting my refined sugar. I have more energy and am happier in general. But I would advice a gentle approach, sugar is like a drug that your body and brain are used to. I'd incorporate lots of veggies and fruits with natural sugars---this will let your brain and body adjust easier without so many symptoms. The headaches can be brutal. Drink lots of water and eat fruit consistently throughout the day, at a meal and at a snack. Then try slowly tapering back once that's feeling easier.
Losing a tooth to decay scared me!! I am not off sugar but doing better. Drinking 2 quarts of water a day reduces appetite and cravings. Also fruit smoothies with a little stevia (if needed) satisfies. Try to eat good proteins with every meall to keep blood sugar steady. Try Greek yogurt wi with honey for a healthy treat.
Edited by: LIVINGWELL69 at: 12/7/2012 (23:33)
Fitness Minutes: (48,676)
5,092 12/7/12 11:19 P
I've heard that people have success quitting cold turkey. Sugar is highly addictive, and once you're not eating it constantly, you stop missing it and wanting it. Trying so hard to do this! Today was almost a success, but then I had a spoonful of whipped cream about an hour and a half ago. Oh well, better than a Klondike Bar :)
I am trying to drop sugar from my diet...when I say sugar I mean candy/chocolate in particular. I don't really eat much bread or pasta or rice but I LOVE candy. It is a serious addiction for me and I feel like I need it everyday to survive. UGH...horrible feeling. For those that have been successful in getting off of candy/chocolate/sugar how did you do it-cold turkey or gradual? Have you ever given into a craving and did it set you back? THanks for sharing your experiences.