29 Feb ShakeYoSugarHabit.com (An Active Person’s Guide to Shakin’ Yo Sugar Habit)
Kari Gormley of The Running Lifestyle Show is suchhhh an incredibly inspiring person. You have to meet this girl. She is like gogogo and always has this incredible aura about her– like she makes you feel like anything and everything is possible if you just “put it out into the universe.”
A few weeks ago, Kari asked me for help with achieving her Lenten goal- to give up sugar. It just so happens, I had just written a nutrition challenge for my local gym, Body Elite Fitness, where I was putting on a sugar challenge, Shake Yo’ Sugar Habit, to help my fellow gymrats wean from sugar! Funny how life works, amiright?
1. Avoiding added & nutrient poor starches and sugar
When you eat sweet food, your brain lights up with dopamine as a reward system. (1)
Now, this is an okay thing when the sweetest thing your tongue has ever tasted is something along the lines of strawberries, blueberries, or beets. In that circumstance, your brain’s dopamine response would be trained to believe strawberries provide the greatest reward food can provide. However, as you expose your body to foods which have been manufactured to have a heightened dopamine response, such as soda or pastries, then your brain’s dopamine reward experience is much less gratifying when tasting the natural sweetness of fruit.
We discuss how to shake yo’ cabinets clean of carbs that are not allowed (or hiding it since seeing tasty treats is a powerful trigger for overeating!)
2. Managing inflammation by managing the amount of total carbs you take in, managing when you take in carbs, and managing your intake of pro-inflammatory fats. Shake Yo Sugar Habit provides “sugar shakers” with a total carbohydrate allowance based on gender and activity level. Also, I go cray cray with the education on WHEN is the best time to take in sugar in order to keep cravings at bay and support activity & recovery.
Also, while we all know I think fat is phat, I really stress the importance of choosing anti-inflammatory fat while shaking yo’ sugar habit. For this reason, seed oils (vegetable, corn, soybean, non-organic canola) are banned & fatty dairy/meats that are NOT organic are discouraged. And… guess what, guys?! Less inflammation means less cortisol (your body’s stress hormone), which means less sugar cravings. Woot woot. Food is powerful, yo.
3. Shake Yo’ Booty-type exercise several times a week with high intensity interval training. When you are switching between fast and slow movement you make the body more efficiently burn sugar. Studies show that HIIT has been associated with lower 3 month averages of blood sugar and decreasing abdominal fat. (2,3,4)