Sugar – My Heroin (Part 2)

Decision: It’s time to break up!

By: Quinton de Bruin

When it comes to making any changes, improvements or tweaks in our lives, we NEVER act before making the decision to do so. Think about it, try closing this App without deciding to move your thumb or the mouse! Correct, impossible. So, be that a conscious or subconscious decision, it’s a decision all the same. Now deciding to close an App and a decision to stop injecting or snorting heroin are two quite different things, are they not? As we touched on last time, when sugar hits our tongue the taste receptors are activated, sending a signal to our brain, lighting up our reward pathway and releasing the feel-good hormone dopamine – if however, this happens all too often, the feel-good factor reduces, requiring us to consume more sugar to get that same intense rush…. In other words - addiction.

Now unlike the “learned” addiction of drugs or smoking, we are born with this desire for sugar. Without getting to scientific, sugar in the body means energy when in the form of glycogen which to our predecessors meant survival, so naturally when sugar is available we want to load up, unfortunately today not only is it available it seems to be everywhere and in everything!!

Interestingly this brings me to the decision of dropping sugar like the bride’s dress on her wedding night. The decision is made when the action is a must, “I must live sugar free now!” and that’s followed by the freeing feeling of knowing that, “I can live sugar free from now.” And in many cases shortly thereafter the tightening of the stomach when anxiety builds as we realise we don’t want to let go. 

Most of us reading this would have experienced a relationship coming to an end at some time in our lives (and if you never have….you’re spending too much time in the gym and not enough socialising). When it comes to breaking up with sugar, I’m not kidding when I say the emotion, fear and anxiety is no different. Sugar has been there as a crutch for you during tough times, busy times and great times, yet you know it’s not doing you any good, you drop it again feeling empty yet find yourself coming back because in the moment it was easier for you to need it more than you needed to be healthy.

I will say here, I am not trying to demonise sugar, in small quantities it is absolutely fine (for women that is roughly six teaspoons per day and for men about nine). The problem is we are consuming two, three and in some cases four times that amount, and we don’t even realise it…Ever wondered why your weight is not dropping off even though you follow a seemingly healthy diet and you exercise regularly? Hidden or not so hidden sugar may be the reason.

So, here’s the task: Are you ready to make the tough call? Are you ready to be the one that is going to end this relationship because sugar sure as hell isn’t going to do it! Time to pop those big boy /girl pants on. If this is you, then decide…. Knowing beyond a shadow of a doubt, that you can with this technique. 

Once you have done this, add a bit of humour into the mix –here’s your sugar breakup song (click on the link to play) – go ahead listen to every word, the whole song – who knows, quite likely you will feel a bit emotional but I know that by the end of the song, you’ll be giggling! Go on, do it. Don’t just play it, whack some headphones on and sing along like those crazies in the gym that forget they have headphones on while they sing! Or shut the door, turn up the volume and sing into the bottom of your water bottle. Have fun with it.

Well done, you have just done the toughest part. Catch you soon with the next steps!!


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