What Happens to Your Mind & Body When You Quit Sugar

Even though sugar is found in so much of our food, it actually isn’t good for us. Don’t get me wrong, it’s fine to treat yourself in moderation, but have you ever wondered what would happen to your body if you quit eating sugar altogether?

There are a few reasons why people have such a hard time quitting sugar. On one hand, it tastes delicious. On the other hand, sugar causes the opioid receptors in your brain to activate, which triggers your neurological rewards system to flare up. This means sugar makes you feel good emotionally; but in excess it can produce side effects like headaches, energy crashes, and even hormonal imbalances.

There is a vital difference between processed sugars and natural sugars found in fruit, honey, and unsweetened milk. Refined sugars are high calorie and have no real nutritional value, whereas natural sugars are accompanied by vitamins and minerals.

Processed sugars come with a significant downside- it’s up to you to decide if they’re worth the taste.

The number one way we over consume sugar is by drinking it. Soda, Starbucks lattes, and even popular smoothie companies can be overloaded with enough sugar to last you a week. After the sugar in popular drinks, packaged foods are the next biggest culprit. Baked goods, candy bars, and even the majority of store-bought granola bars can come with half the sugar of a 12 oz. soda, maybe even more.

The first bite or sip of these products is manufactured to be highly satisfying, but can we all say we feel especially vibrant or energized once a large amount is sitting in our stomachs? Studies have shown that there are more than 50 varieties of processed sugars. Regardless of the sugars’ chemical makeup, the body knows no different and will react all the same. These chemicals certainly aren’t doing any good for you despite their pleasant taste.

Processed sugars can spike blood sugars in the body fast and drop them quickly too. As blood sugar levels rise, you’ll experience a quick increase in energy. Sadly, because those levels become regulated quickly, you’ll experience an energy crash.

On top of that, our bodies use enzymes in the small intestine to break down sugar into glucose. Typically, this isn’t a problem, but any excess glucose will be converted to fat, leading to weight gain and obesity.

 

So, what happens to your body when you stop eating sugar? 

As tempting as it may be to choose the sugary option, eliminating sugar from your diet can have a significant impact on your overall health. If you’re someone who regularly treats themselves to sugary drinks and treats, you will go through a withdraw period.

Studies have shown that when someone stops eating sugar there are similar effects as when people get off drugs. You may experience exhaustion, headaches, brain fog and irritability.  Some people even have gastrointestinal distress.

 

  1. Your Mood Can Change

As I discussed earlier, sugar releases the dopamine and serotonin, the feel-good hormones, in the brain, activating your body’s reward system. But, when you stop eating sugar altogether, your body goes through a withdrawal period. At first, you might feel cranky or irritable. Additionally, people said to have experienced fatigue, headaches, or even a feeling of sadness or depression. But, don’t worry! This is just your body adjusting to new levels of hormones. You should start feeling improvement within a week or so.

 

  1. Your Skin Can Become More Clear

Did you know that processed sugar is one of the major foods that contribute to acne? Refined sugar can cause your skin to become inflamed, which results in a lack of collagen.  When omitting sugar from your diet, you may start to notice your skin looking tight, bright and glowy.

 

  1. You Can Improve the Quality of Your Sleep in the Long Run

Like the other benefits of quitting sugar, your quality of sleep won’t improve overnight. But, in a few weeks, you may begin falling into a deeper sleep. Eating less sugar will reduce the number of times you wake up during the night, allowing you to enter REM stage and improve your sleep quality overall.

 

  1. You Can Lose Weight

There are many elements that go into gaining weight. So, it’s important to note that the same goes for losing weight as well. But one of those elements is cutting back on sugar.

 

When you reduce your intake of sugar or eliminate it completely, storage of fat will slowly decline, resulting in weight loss. However, keep in mind that this will take some time – approx. 1-2 weeks.

If you are focused on losing a few pounds, try replacing your sugar with eating more protein and following a regular exercise routine that includes both cardio and weight training. Read my blog here to learn how weight training can help you lose weight and tone your body.

 

I hope you guys found this interesting and helpful. Be sure to share with your friends and family.

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