If you want to be really successful doing The Man Diet, the first thing you absolutely must do is break your sugar addiction/compulsion.
I have gotten many questions in this regard on how to do actually do it, as well as what are sugar substitutes that I recommend. I have posted this before, but I will say it again. One of the most important things you have to do to break your sugar addiction/compulsion is to actually break your sugar addiction/compulsion. It’s not always easy to do for some people, and the fact it does take both a little awareness and a little will power (sometimes a lot).
One of the first things you need to do is be aware of what your triggers are.
Know thyself…it is the true path to wisdom, as they saying goes. But what does this mean in actuality? In regards to sugar addiction/compulsion it means noting the times you really crave sugar, and what happened before you binged on something sweet. Were you angry or depressed? Were you tired? Did you have a tough day at work? Stress is an important trigger for sweet cravings, and to beat them, you will have to ultimately manage you stress. This is not an easy thing to do, though, and we all fail. The only thing I would say in this regard is to not beat yourself up about it, so as to not create a vicious cycle of defeat. Get over it, and start over tomarrow…we all have to do that in our lives, and not just in regards to diet. Tomorrow will always be better, so keep hopeful and optimistic that it will, and you know what?…it usually is!
That being said, people like sweet things, and it’s hard to cut them out completely. There is no doubt about that and it is natural to like and desire sweet things, but with all the sugar and sweetness that we have in our society, sugar becomes the dominant flavor/taste that seems to drive a lot of food compulsion etc.
So, if you want to break the sugar habit, you have to break sugar habit. You have to stop, which means not replacing your sweet tooth with gums, diet soda (especially with caffeine), energy drinks, low-carb bars and the like. It may be hard in the beginning and the fact is you may still have to use some sugar substitutes to bridge the gap to being as sugar free as you can.
Here are some other tips that can help. You may want to try these if you find it difficult to stop the sugar habit:
- Sticking with the diet and not cheating will help the most…nothing succeed like success…the more you follow The Man Diet, the less you will have a sugar compulsion.
- Make sure you eat until you are satisfied, and if you are hungry at the end of a meal, have seconds…also, wait awhile until ‘the food hits your stomach’ as sometimes this helps
- Choose your desserts wisely…low sugar, fruits, dark chocolate, etc. and ask yourself: Do I really need this? Can I get by with a taste and cup of coffee or tea?
- Drinking a lot of fluids. Water is best, and having it when you are hungry before a meal can help quit down a ravenous appetite. Likewise, avoid diet soda, a lot of coffee, and other stimulants as well as beer, and alcohol…there is a reason why people go out eating after a long night of drinking! They get the munchies!
- Supplementing with proper vitamins and minerals. You can’t supplement yourself out of a bad diet, but it’s a good idea when you are losing weight to supplement along with a good diet, which The Man Diet is…eat your veggies!
- Also when you have a sweet tooth experimenting with eating fruit. Peanut butter and apples, berries, and other things like cantaloupe are all good choices. Even celery with peanut butter can have a hint of satisfying sweetness that can get you over the hump.
- L-glutamine has been recommend by many to help break sugar addiction. The theory goes that it helps stabilize blood sugar swings which can cause sweet cravings. I personally have not used it alone, but I do use low-carb whey powder, which I use in the mornings with coconut milk, and I like it. It does give me energy, and I am not hungry until lunch.
- Exercising. This helps a lot to reduce sugar cravings. You don’t have to go nuts as a long walk, a bike ride, playing with your kids, are all helpful. Likewise, manage stress but taking a day off, having a picnic, and sleep well or take a nap when you are tired.
- Finally, some people I know have used sugar detox ‘system’ which include protein powder, bars, and fiber to help curb the sugar addiction. I have not personally used these, but it all else failed, it might be worth a shot.
Eventually when you break your sugar compulsion, you will be able to taste things like coffee and tea once again. You will be able to taste the subtle flavors in tea, for instance, without sugar and enjoy them again. That is really important.
You do not want to be in a situation where you are putting three packs of stevia instead of three packs of sugar into your black coffee in the morning.
Do not trade, as I have said, one compulsion for another compulsion.
Make a real change in your life.