This is the first morning I have woken up with sugar cravings. Before my eyes were even open I was having thoughts about finding some kind of chocolate or candy in house and munching on it before coffee. Fantasies of going to the pastry section of my local grocer to get a donut, apple fritter, or big sugary muffin were floating through my groggy half awake mind.
This is my habitual response to stress. I stayed up too late, twice in a row and yesterday got up very early. Not enough sleep always makes me crave sugary stuff. I've been doing this since I was in college, taking classes at night and working during the day. I worked from 8am to 4:30pm went to class for 5:00pm until 10:30pm and then would be up until 2 or 3am smoking cigarettes and drinking Monster energy drinks to get my school work done. I'd go to sleep for a couple hours then get up, go to work and do the same thing all over again the next day. All the while supplying my self with a consistent flow of sugar.
Sugar is a quick pick me up energy shot and the brain knows it. That's why we crave it, our body says "you're sluggish, have a piece of chocolate, it will make you feel better." We all want to feel better, so of course why wouldn't we eat the sugar? Unfortunately the rush of energy from processed sugar is short-lived and leaves us crashing, feeling low, heavy and depressed. Naturally the body sends us signals to get more sugar to maintain the high. We oblige and soon succumb to the same crashing low. Eventually we get sucked into a cycle of needing a little sweet shot just to get though that part of our day, just to feel okay. If you are really unlucky then you spend your days in continous cycles of highs and lows refueling with processed sugar 3, 5, 10 times a day.
For those of you reading this in disbelief or are feeling a little angry with my soap box rant, maybe you're thinking to your self "No, sugar is not that big of a problem!". I say to you Alcohol isn't that big of a problem for most people. Many people can drink alcohol and/or leave it alone, no problem. Some however, begin to depend on it to wind down at the end of a stressful day, which can gradually turn into not being able to function in any capacity without it.
You are correct though, it's not a problem, until we are relying on it just to feel okay. That's called addiction.
Out of curiosity alone, try conducting an experiment on your self. Find out if you can actually live your life with out sugar. For five days, cut out all added, processed table sugars, syrups and solids and see what happens. Does the mere thought it make you feel panicked and angry? Do you feel mildly uncomfortable? Did you just experience an involuntary shift in your body, an uncomfortable, unconscious protest very close to a shudder of revulsion? Look a little closer at that. Why do you feel angry, panicked or uncomfortable at the thought of voluntarily giving up something that is "Not that big of a problem." for only five days? Listen for the little thoughts floating around that idea, write them down and look at them, look closely. How important is sugar to you and your daily life? If you find your self saying "I can quit anytime, I just don't want to." That's what addicts say to convince themselves they don't have a problem. Just think about it.
Okay, so now you know what comes up for me when I have sugar cravings. Ha ha! and this is how I am choosing to get through it. I am writing about it, reminding myself why I decided to quit in the first place.
Thank you for reading! Let me know how you feel about sugar!