Can you get rid of your sweet tooth? 6 questions about sugar

Good news for sugar rats: you can get over your sweet tooth, even if you don’t give up sugar completely.

1. I crave sugar — why?

We have an innate preference for sweets. Mother’s milk is also sweet. However, the craving for sweets can become unnecessarily large if you teach yourself to eat sugar when you should be eating real food.

The hunger starts with sweets only for a moment, and the rapid rise in blood sugar is followed by its rapid fall, which causes fatigue and irritability in many people. Still, a quick feeling of well-being can start to be associated with sweets in the mind.

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The background of sugar cravings can also be emotional eating: sweets can relieve a bad mood. If you eat sweets often enough for a feeling, after a while you won’t even notice the feeling that triggers it, but only feel the craving for sweets.

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2. Does a sugar break help get rid of sugar cravings?

Some people have found that it is easier to return to moderate sugar consumption if they first go completely without it for a month.

In general, it would be good to eat real food when you’re hungry, and only then have something sweet if you still feel like it.

In emotional and comfort eating, you should learn to recognize emotional states and deal with them in other ways. You can succeed in that with your own help, or if, for example, emotional eating has led to severe overweight, it may be good to find out in therapy.

3. Is there any benefit to sugar?

Sugar is a carbohydrate that quickly turns into energy, so you can get extra energy from it in an instant. It also gives many people a feeling of well-being and quickly quenches their sweet tooth.

4. And what’s the harm in that?

In small amounts, usually nothing. Domestic nutritional recommendations include that less than 10 percent of the day’s energy should come from added sugar or syrups. They are added both at home and in industry to, for example, pastries, candies and sauces.

The recommendation of the World Health Organization WHO goes a little further. It uses the concept of free sugars and also adds sugars from honey and fruit juices to the list. If a total of more than 10 percent of the day’s energy comes from these sources, according to research, it clearly increases the risk of gaining weight.

5. Is it worth eating sugar at all?

If you were to completely deny yourself sugar, it would only make you feel worse.

According to research, sugar is not as addictive as tobacco, alcohol and drugs, so there is no need to give it up completely. It is better to keep the amount in moderation and keep eating as flexible as possible.

6. What about milk and fruit sugar — are they bad too?

Regular sugar does not contain any minerals or other health promoting substances. In addition to sugar, you can get vitamins and fibers from berries and fruits. In addition to lactose, milk also contains calcium and protein. They also have a filling effect, unlike sugar alone.

The quality of carbohydrates affects health just as much as the quality of fat, and according to research, berries and fruits have a very positive effect. If you constantly eat too much regular sugar, it in turn impoverishes your diet and predisposes you to gain weight.

Anna-Maria Teeriniemi, FT Anna-Maria Teeriniemi, licensed nutritionist, Kuopio University Hospital Clinical Nutrition Unit

This article has appeared in Hyvä tervey magazine. As a subscriber, you can read all issues free of charge from the service.

Source: Hyvä Terveys by

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