You judiciously avoid baked goods, sweeten your coffee with Splenda and steer clear of high-fructose corn syrup. But believe it or not, you may still be addicted to sugar.
“I was a sugar addict,” recalls Sarah Wilson, a journalist, health coach, and author of the book, I Quit Sugar: Your Complete 8-Week Detox Program & Cookbook. “I hid behind the so-called ‘healthy sugars’ like honey, dark chocolate and fruit. Which made things harder in some ways, because first I had to face my denial.”
There is a compelling case to be made against the sweet stuff. Sugar has been linked to myriad negative health outcomes, including diabetes, heart disease, autoimmune diseases and more. And sugar is sneaky, lurking where we least expect it—even in seemingly healthy foods. “Our modern food system is set up around sugar, and seductively so,” Sarah notes. “A granola bar can contain more sugar than a block of chocolate; everyday barbecue sauce, more than chocolate topping.”
After developing numerous health problems–from mood disorders to insomnia to Graves disease—Sarah decided to nix sugar from her diet in a last-ditch effort to reclaim her health. She drastically pared back the amount of sugars, both added and natural, in her diet. Fruit, honey, agave syrup—all of these foods were off-limits. Although it wasn’t easy to quit sugar cold turkey (it took her about 2 months to shake the addiction), Sarah soon noticed some significant changes—she lost weight, gained more energy and felt better overall.
In her book, Sarah outlines a simple, realistic eight-week program for ditching your sugar addiction once and for all. Whether you want to lose weight, gain more energy or simply curb your sweet tooth, Sarah’s week-by-week guide will make you feel nourished from the inside-out. Here, Sarah shares a sampling of her delicious, low-sugar recipes: