Nowadays it seems everyone has a “sweet tooth” but for some the desire to consume sugar is anything but an innocent or occasional craving.
For some, the need for sugar morphs into an unwavering compulsion and could be considered an actually biological addiction. Before you continue to read any further, check and see if this sounds like you:
• Have tried over and over again to cut out sugar from your diet, or at least decrease it, and no matter how hard you have tried, you end up giving in to your cravings and wind up feeling like you are a failure?
• Does it ever feel like there’s absolutely nothing you can do to overcome the cravings and you know you’ll ‘give in’ no matter how much you’ve told yourself you wouldn’t?
• Would it feel like a million-ton weight was lifted from your shoulders if you learned it’s not your fault that your craving sugar and it’s not a lack of willpower that’s driving you to eat anything sugary you can get your hands on?
In cases like these, it’s important to understand that a biological addiction to sugar/or carbohydrates CAN exist. More importantly, recognizing that your inability to refrain from eating it is likely not your fault. If you’ve been simply trying to employ good old-fashioned “willpower” to overcome your addiction, please know that this strategy simply will not work in almost all cases. The biological needs of your body will ‘win-out’ over willpower each time.
Charles Gant, MD, of National Integrated Health Associates in Washington, DC best describes the issue of willpower verses biological needs with the following exercise he has his patients perform. “Everyone’s body requires oxygen to live, correct?" Dr. Gant playfully asks. “Well, what I would like you to do is take a deep breath and hold it. Now, I want you to use all of your willpower to tell your body that you no longer require oxygen and that you don’t need to take another breath.” With a big smile he continues, “You simply won’t be able to do it! Your biological need for oxygen will always ‘win-out’ over your willpower. In other words, all the willpower in the world can not overrule the biological requirements of your body.”
In the case of sugar addiction, or addiction to other foods, medications or even illegal substances, it’s possible that a biological dependency on the sugar to carry out normal functions in the body may have developed. In such cases, it’s imperative to get to the root cause of the addiction and to learn how the body is using the sugar to cope. Once this is discovered, strategies can be employed to give your body what it needs, which in turn allows for the elimination of dependency on sugar.
When investigating the root causes of sugar addiction, you can view the process just as you might view the process of peeling back the layers of an onion. Getting to the root cause of sugar addiction can be multi-step process. One exciting part of this process however, is that with each layer you uncover, an opportunity for healing exists. As the healing journey to sugar addiction unfolds, greater and greater levels of vitality can be birthed.