The idea of cutting back on sugar in your diet can seem a little daunting. Sugar pops up in so many of our common food and drink choices — and may be lurking in places you wouldn’t expect.
However, cutting back on sugar offers real health benefits that may also improve your productivity at work. Here are just a few of the ways that sugar may be affecting your performance:
- Clearer thinking: Sugar can cause pesky mental side effects such as brain fog, lowered attention span and mood instability.
- Better sleep: Before you reach for that coffee creamer in the morning, think about the quality of sleep you’re getting. Foods with high levels of refined sugar have been shown to negatively affect your slow wave sleep and REM sleep stages, which are both crucial for waking up feeling rested and ready to tackle the day.
- Weight loss: This may come as a no-brainer, but cutting back on sugar can also lead to weight loss. Becoming healthier also has the added benefit of boosting confidence, and those effects can be felt in both your professional and personal life.
3 Tips for Consuming Less Sugar in Your Diet
Now that you understand the health benefits of cutting back on sugar, here are a few tips for how to successfully limit your sugar intake.
1. Create A Plan
Set a game plan for how you want to approach cutting back on sugar. Experts recommend trying a sugar detox that effectively rids your body of sugar to help you reset your sugar dependence. The typical timeframe for a sugar detox is at least 7 days, but you could go longer (two weeks or a month) if you’re up for it.
It’s also important to realize that you’re going to go through sugar detox withdrawal, which can manifest in a variety of ways such as fatigue, anxious thoughts, and difficulty sleeping. Knowing that you could experience these symptoms ahead of time can help you prepare and be more patient with yourself as you’re detoxing.
2. Prepare Your Own Meals
It’s no secret that pre-packaged meals and foods often contain loads of sugar. One way that you can cut back on sugar in your diet is by preparing your own meals. You’ll know exactly how much sugar is added (along with other ingredients) to ensure you’re making healthy choices.
3. Curb Cravings
While you’re detoxing, you’re likely to experience cravings. Be prepared by not skipping meals and eating foods high in protein. Curb sugar cravings by reaching for fruit instead of sugary sweets or popping in gum to distract yourself.
To help you kickstart your sugar-free journey, we’ve created a helpful infographic that helps you plan a sugar detox by offering easy meal options and ways to satisfy your sweet tooth so you can keep your smile gleaming for years to come.