The brain releases dopamine when you eat sugar. Dopamine is a brain chemical that affects your emotions and sensations of pain and pleasure. It is referred to as the happy chemical. As dopamine is released, the brain enjoys the feeling and craves more of it, sending signals to your body to continue eating sugar. Morphine and heroin stimulate the same receptors in the brain that sugar stimulates, which explains how a person can become addicted to any of these substances.
If you give in to sugar cravings, you will eventually gain weight because of high caloric intake. The weight gain will be exacerbated if you aren’t willing to do anything to burn the extra calories you are consuming.
You can fight your sugar cravings by doing the following:
- Be liberal with cinnamon – Cinnamon can improve insulin resistance by activating genes that provide metabolic signaling. In plain language, cinnamon helps you stabilize your blood sugar. Consuming ¼ teaspoon of cinnamon daily can help prevent insulin spikes.
- Eat enough chromium – Chromium is important in the regulation of blood sugar. It prevents insulin highs and lows that will lead you to crave unhealthy foods. Chromium is important in energy production. It can be sourced from beef, poultry, dairy products, broccoli, green beans, whole grains, and potatoes. If you feel you are low in chromium, take supplements of at least 200 mg each morning during breakfast to prevent spikes in your blood sugar levels.
- Have protein with breakfast – You can balance your blood sugar by having protein with every meal, especially for breakfast. Start the day with eggs or a protein shake. Make sure to include other protein sources, such as beef, poultry, fish, and beans for your other meals. Also add nuts and seeds.
- Fight inflammation – There will be blood sugar imbalances if there is inflammation in the body. Antioxidants are good at reducing inflammation. You can source your antioxidants from oily fish, whole grains, dark leafy vegetables, bell peppers, berries, tomatoes, ginger, garlic, and beets.
- Get a good night’s rest – Sleeping at least eight hours each night is recommended. The body releases the appetite-increasing hormone ghrelin when you don’t get enough rest. You will notice that when you are sleep-deprived, you are more likely to crave food.
Your first step toward weight loss is resisting the urge to eat more than you should. As they say, “A moment on the lips, forever on the hips.” It always feels good to eat, but the consequences of eating too much are rarely worth it.