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chuggins143

...and how about some MORE noobish questions!

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Hello one and all!   Just started paleo earlier this week and have had a pretty good week so far.  I do however have a few questions...

 

What do you do when you're body is screaming for sugar?  ...in the whole "I want you to eat three Snickers bars" kind of voice!  I'll occasiionally get where my veins will almost burn with "I want sugar"...  I typically just say "shut up" and go eat some nuts or a slice of meat, and eventually it'll go away.  Is there a better solution?  I'm half tempted to get a glucose monitor and check my glucose levels when I get like that to see if I'm crashing.

 

Any thoughts on "diet" drinks... like diet soda or the little packets you pour in your water bottle, I understand that it's not paleo in any sense of the word, but on the other hand it has no calories or carbs either.  I'm not a big soda drinker anyway so giving up regular soda was relativly easy...  but occasionally I really do want that "burn" as it goes down.  ...or want sweet tea.   How about artifical sweeteners in general?  I like some "sweet" in my coffee.  I've alreay switched over to actual half&half in my coffee and it taste so much better than the powdered creamers and even the little French vanilla cups that I once was so fond of!  ...and now instead of just grabbing the tub of sugar and throwing in a few hundred empty calories, I just drop in a splenda.  I'm sure none of them are "good" for me, but I figure it's proabably better than dumping straight sugar or HFCS down my gullet.  Thoughts?

 

Thanks!

 

C

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I'm biased in my response in that I haven't eaten sugar in 6/7 years, here is what I think works and what I did.

What I did was over 2years, seriously. But it was part of a bigger picture and a different community. I firstly regulated my meals and added sugar to the end of each meal. A regulated "dose" of sugar. for the first while I had ANY sugar (donuts, ice cream, snickers, whatever) when my body got used to a regular dose I started regulating what I had, so i had only chocolate. starting with normal, then darker and darker until, in the end I was having 2 squares of 75% chocolate which I swapped out for berries and bananas for the final phase. In this way I never had to white knuckle it or fight any cravings. I haven't had sugar in 6/7 years and have never felt a need for it. I actually went TOO clean and had no fruit or any sweet stuff at all, this made it HARD to eat out and when I did I had a crazy strong reaction so now I have sauces with some sweeteners in it like grape juice and started eating fruit again.

So, if i were you I would make sure I was eating really good meals with high levels of protein, fat and veggies. I would have a sugar treat after each meal, there are LOADS of sweet paleo treats sweetened with dates or honey. I would also have fruit. I would do this until it feels normal, and then I would reduce one meal at a time working backwards (reduce 25% at dinner, then 25% at lunch, then 25% at breakfast) and leave it until it feels normal.

That's what I would do, but lots of other people just grind their teeth and force themselves through it

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I have fresh dates or dried prunes after a meal, that usually sorts it out. Also I have the odd diet drink, it tastes good and has no calories so why sweat it - unless we're talking litres per day...

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Ok, I guess I don't feel too bad then.  I picked up some dried apricots and having one or two kills the cravings.  Like i said, I'm just on week one and still adjusting... I'll just keep on keeping on and see where we go.  Thanks for the advice guys!

C

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Those diet drinks aren't so much an issue due to the calories but because of the artificial sweeteners they use to make them- which could be worse than the regular sugar depending on what it is. If you really need a fizz-kick, you're better of sticking with carbonated water (you could mix it with some blended fruit for flavour if you need it) than any 'diet' brand.

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Those diet drinks aren't so much an issue due to the calories but because of the artificial sweeteners they use to make them- which could be worse than the regular sugar depending on what it is. If you really need a fizz-kick, you're better of sticking with carbonated water (you could mix it with some blended fruit for flavour if you need it) than any 'diet' brand.

Also interestingly some studies are showing that the use of artificial sweeteners is "priming" the brain for high calorie sweet stuff, as it doesn't get it it starts to look for it, leading to cravings.I read a couple of things about it that I should have saved to cite but I always forget!

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Yeah....welcome to the low carb flu/cravings period. It's rough and you have my sympathies. Your body liked having all that easily used sugar and now it has to make do with less and it is going to rebel a bit on you. If you can ration them, I like dried figs a lot and they can help with cravings. Taking a walk can help too, especially if it's outdoors, helps distract your mind, bike rides are good too. The absolute worst thing you can do is sit and think about it, at least in my experience. I always ended up dwelling on it and finally rationalizing why I really *needed* that snack and how it wouldn't hurt. Well it does. It took me a long time to beat the sugar monster back.

Another thing you can look into is your gut flora. A lot of research has been coming out in the last few years about the human microbiome. Some of it has been looking at how the microbes in your gut actually influence your cravings. The short version goes like this, what you feed, grows. Certain microbes do better when you eat more sugar and have a diet low in resistant starch. The little guys who you actually want to be populating your gut, prefer fibers so they get marginalized. When you change your diet radically, as you have, the bacteria who preferred your old diet are starving and sending serious "Feed us now!" signals to your brain, thus, cravings. By eating to feed the good bacteria, you can influence the composition of your gut flora. One way to go about hacking this, is by consuming unmodified potato starch, you can't break it down, so it goes on to be broken down by the good bacteria in your gut. There is a bit more to it than what I have described, I really recommend you go over to Free the Animal, he has the most thorough compilation I have ever seen on the subject. Go poke around, there is a great little video that goes into it right there on the first page, just scroll down a bit.

http://freetheanimal.com/2013/12/resistant-primer-newbies.html

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