Friday, December 18, 2020

The #1 Key to Slowing the Aging Process is Kicking the Sugar Habit! Here's 4 Easy Steps.

An essential part of healthy aging
is reducing our sugar consumption. 
Everyone knows that sugar is bad for you. But, you might not be aware that over-consuming sugar speeds up your aging, and is the main factor in promoting wrinkles and chronic diseases. What you do on a daily basis is what essentially creates or destroys your health, and sweet foods are really meant for special occasions-not an every day indulgence. Many research studies have  proven that over consumption of sugar has a direct relationship with the development of diabetes, liver failure, dementia, Alzheimer's, cancer, breast cancer, osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, and heart disease. 

A sugar study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association of Internal Medicine showed that those participants with the highest intake of sugar had a four-fold increase in their risk for heart attacks compared to those with the lowest intakes of sugar. If that is not bad enough-sugar is also a vitamin robber, and weakens our immune system; causing us to catch colds and flues more often. Excess sugar consumption also leads to mood problems, such as depression, and anxiety. 

Unpleasant Aftereffects of Sugar

  • Belly weight-gain 
  • hormonal imbalances
  • more sugar cravings
  • brain fog
  • fatigue
  • anxiety and depression
  • high blood pressure
  • dental issues

Many leading experts have written about the damaging consequences of sugar. Endocrinologist Dr. Robert Lustig, a leading expert on obesity and the author of the book Fat Chance, believes that foods made with sugar are toxic to our bodies. He states, “Evolutionarily, sugar was available to our ancestors as fruit for only a few months out of the year or as honey; which was guarded by bees.” He adds, “But in recent years, sugar has been added to nearly all processed foods, limiting consumer choice. “Nature made sugar hard to get; man made it easy,” proclaims Lustig.

After decades of research on the damaging effects of sugar on our health, Dr. Mark Hyman, author of numerous books on blood sugar imbalances, asserts that it is sugar, not fat that causes heart attacks, weight gain, and other chronic diseases. He and other experts believe that 50 years of government eating guidelines and doctor’s advice have been wrong.  He contends that the guidance to swap sugary processed cereal for eggs is flawed and dangerous. 

                Wrinkles, Age Spots and Accelerated Aging

Excessive sugar consumption accelerates the aging process by promoting an abnormal reaction between sugars and proteins in the body. This reaction is known as endogenous glycation. Glycation, also accounts for the browning of foods and the caramelizing of sugars when cooking. Glycation occurs in our body when sugar molecules bind with protein molecules. This reaction creates pro-inflammatory products otherwise known as “Advanced Glycation End Products” or AGES. AGES promote protein damage called “cross linking.”  This makes our tissues become hard and stiff. Glycation can occur in our organs or even our skin; causing wrinkles and age spots. When proteins are glycated, the amount of free-radical damage formed is increased 50 fold- which leads to a loss of cell function and cell death. Many-age related diseases such as hardening of the arteries, cataracts, diabetes, autoimmune diseases, osteoarthritis and neurological impairment are attributed to glycation.

Other sugar related ailments are listed as follows:

Adrenal gland exhaustion

Anxiety, depression

Bone loss

Candida overgrowth

Flatulence, and bloating





Hormonal problems



Kidney stones

Liver dysfunction

Low HDL cholesterol

Hormonal imbalances; PMS, polycystic ovaries

Decrease in life span.

Mental fogginess, headaches

Tips to kick the Sugar Habit

1. Read ingredient labels-Purchase food without added sweeteners 

It is important to read ingredient labels carefully, as sugar is hidden in almost all processed foods. 

  • If a label says sucrose, glucose, maltose, lactose, fructose, corn syrup, evaporated cane juice or white grape juice concentrate; than sugar has been added to the product. 
  • Fruit yogurt has high sugar levels, as well as tomato sauce. Most breakfast cereals- even whole grain, are loaded with sugar. Highly processed breakfast cereals, including puffed cereals are a poor start to the day, and can wreak havoc on our blood sugar and insulin levels as well. In addition, breakfast cereals go through a high heat extrusion process that damages the proteins in the cereal; rendering them nutrient depleted.  

Generally, it is always recommended to try to purchase foods without sweeteners. You can always add a little of your own 0 calorie natural sweeteners such as: 

  • stevia, lo han guo, or birch bark xylitol to the food at home. 

If you don’t like the taste of 0 calorie natural sweeteners, you can add 1/3 banana, (mashed) or a couple of chopped fresh dates or figs, or a Tbsp. or two of raisins.

Additionally, you can drizzle a bit of raw antioxidant-rich buckwheat, manuka or tupelo honey or dark maple syrup (Grade B or C) to lightly sweeten it at home. (beginner health seekers) However, many of us can’t stop eating sugar once we start; so it is best just to avoid any natural sweeteners if we have this problem, and stick to only low glycemic fruit and 0 calorie natural sweeteners like pure stevia.

Try substituting unsweetened gluten-free muesli or unsweetened granola for your morning cold cereals; or forego the grains and use instead: ground nuts/seeds, protein powder and coconut flakes with raw milk, coconut milk or almond milk. Top with berries or chopped green apples. 

Note: If you do buy products with added sugar; try not to buy anything with more than 8-10 grams per serving of sugar on the label.

Health-conscious individuals tend to over-consume fruits thinking that they are healthier than sweets. But many fruits have high sugar content, and can raise blood sugar levels too rapidly. With the exception of lemons and limes, it is best to limit fruit from 1- 3 servings daily, with emphasis on the low sugar/low glycemic fruits. (Berries, green apples, cranberries, acai, kiwi, and grapefruit)

2. Eliminate Sweetened Liquids and Artificial Sweeteners.                                        

Sodas are full of bone-stripping chemicals and HFCS. Fruit juices are awash in sugar. Diet drinks create insulin spikes. Drink filtered water, sparkling mineral water with a squeeze of lemon, green tea, and herbal teas. Start to dilute your fruit juices with 3-4 parts water and 1 part juice to lessen the fructose sugar impact.

3. Reduce Sugar Cravings and Blood Sugar Spikes with Protein

According to the scientific literature, sugar is physiologically addictive as it stimulates excessive reward signals in the brain.  In fact, it has been found to be 8 times more addictive than cocaine. The food industry also contributes to this addiction by hiring “craving experts” to create the “bliss point” of junk food that can pull in “heavy users.”

Uncontrollable sugar cravings additionally can be driven by several hormonal, bacterial, fungal and neurotransmitter imbalances. Blood sugar highs and lows are particularly at the root of our food cravings and propel us to eat carb dense foods. Indulging in sugar promotes a blood sugar rollercoaster effect. When we treat ourselves to our favorite sweet treats; we experience blood sugar, serotonin, and endorphin surges. These treats make us feel good! They give us more energy, and a euphoric mood, but are followed by insulin spikes for blood sugar regulation. The subsequent insulin upswing leads to a draining- low blood sugar state; causing fatigue and mental fogginess. This ensuing low energy and mood trigger carb and sugar cravings again to re-bolster our energy; which starts the vicious cycle all over again. This recurring cycle disrupts our equilibrium; resulting in weight gain, hormone imbalances, hypoglycemia, and eventual disease causing insulin resistance. 

One of the mainstays of blood sugar stability is protein. When we experience blood sugar plunges we often become ravenous and lose control of our eating. This shows us that we didn’t eat enough protein or eat it frequently enough. Protein stabilizes our blood sugar and mood and decreases our carb and sugar cravings. Protein is the key!

Consuming adequate protein is the key to reducing sugar cravings and keeping blood sugar levels stable:

  1. Eat a large protein packed breakfast within an hour of waking. 
  2. Have a protein rich snack or meal every 3 or 4 hours
  3. Eat a Protein rich lunch and dinner of fish, poultry, grass-fed beef, game animals, tempeh, or beans and quinoa etc.

                                                            Breakfast Examples

2-3 eggs with spinach on a bed of savory cooked steel cut oats and 1/2 grapefruit

or  3 eggs sautéed with garlic, kale, tomatoes and mushrooms  w/ a side of berries

Whey Protein powder shake with almond milk, berries, flax seed meal, spinach, nutritional yeast & spirulina,

Home-made chicken broth soup with meat or fish and veggies.

Sugar-free whole milk yogurt with berries, flax meal and walnuts with a carrot stick on the side

Sugar-free Steel cut oats or buckwheat hot cereal with flax seed, whey protein powder and berries

Sprouted buckwheat granola or muesli with raw milk, chopped apple, protein powder and almonds

Snack Examples

Nuts/seeds with shredded coconut and some cacao nibs  

Humus or almond butter with celery sticks

Sea weed, topped with avocado, sesame seed, cucumbers and tamari

Bean dip with carrot and jicama sticks,

Unsweetened live and active yogurt with seeds and berries

Raw cheese with small green apple 

Organic sugar-free meat paleo protein bars

Olives or olive tapenade with Mary’s Gone Crackers crackers or veggie sticks

4. Build your Will Power by Cultivating a "Fire in Your Belly" Type of Determination.  To free yourself from the sugar habit try using positive affirmations to jump-start your day. Stand in a strong stance with legs apart and hands in a gentle fist. Imagine a bight yellowish-orange flame in your stomach at your belly button. Imagine fueling this flame by breathing into your belly- making it gently rise and fall. Imagine that this flame is getting bigger and brighter. See this flame spreading heat and light through-out your body. This fire is building your determination and will to abstain from sugar. As you see and feel this fire in your belly say forcefully out loud. " I want to be healthy. I am Powerful. I am Determined to free myself from sugar. I will not eat any sweet things today, I will only eat food that nourishes me today"  You can also make up your own similar affirmation. It's useful to do this exercise several times a day if needed.


Or buy Linda's book:

Your Midlife Anti-aging Plan: Natural Ways to Slow the Aging Process