You’re entering the second week of the Retraining Taste phase of The De-Stress Effect now and depending on the level of change you have had to – or decided – to make, you may be either feeling the full brunt of sugar withdrawal or happily paddling towards new and easy energy levels. Don’t worry if you’re the former, we’re all different and the positive effects are around the corner. If doing The De-Stress Effect with a friend or partner, it is important to support each other, but not compare too much – look how different you are on the outside and imagine the permutations on the inside!
If you are struggling and wondering if this is really worth it, be heartened – it is. These feelings are proof-positive of the profound effects of sugar and its addictive potential. The podcast below and content this week will give you the tools to feel like you can take control. Also, focus on starting the day with a good breakfast (see page 135-6 for best ideas) and the lifestyle factors that help your body balance the hormones and brain chemicals that can become out-of-whack by stress and sugar; go back to the Infographic from Day 3 for quick reference.
Finding New Ways of Coping:
- Sugar-craving Solutions on page 109-110
- Troubleshooting: Weeks 1–3 page 113
- Disidentification page 94
- Intercepting Cravings on the Go page 96
- Best Sweet Alternatives page 167
Here’s some extra help for specific Stress Suits:
Stressed and Wired
If you’re used to keeping up the stress hormones with sugar and stimulants, use the Sugar-craving Solutions on page 109-110 of The De-Stress Effect to check you slowly bring down these things that may have propped you up for a long time.
Stressed and Tired
If you have been using both caffeine and sugar to keep you going, prioritise bringing down the sugar first. It is preferable to keep to two cups of tea or coffee a day (with food) than have sudden sugar cravings from caffeine withdrawal at this time.
Stressed and Cold
Keep moving to help your body chemistry rebalance in the face of cravings. Lack of spontaneous movement – see Chapter 18 of The De-Stress Effect – can keep you sluggish and more likely to turns to snacks from habit and boredom.
Stressed and Bloated
Notice how grains might be contributing to your inflammatory patterns and maybe also provoking an insulin response that can keep blood-sugar on rollercoaster highs and lows. Use Chapter 10 in The De-Stress Effect to cook plenty of energy-rich and easily digestible stews with plenty of veg.
Try specific anti-inflammatory foods that also help ward off cravings like green tea, cinnamon (green tea with cinnamon in a chai), coconut and the best sweet choice prunes, which are extremely high in antioxidants.
Stressed and Demotivated
If you’re really struggling with cravings or bingeing, see the action on Disidentification on page 94, come back to the meditations from Day 1 or go for a walk if they feel overwhelming and even consider hypnotherapy. Prioritise protein for breakfast for serotonin support to help break craving cycles.
Stressed and Hormonal
If this time is coinciding with raging PMS cravings, consider an extra vitamin B6 (with magnesium and zinc for utilisation – the the Supplement Guide from Day 1) and eat plenty of nuts – especially almonds – to provide these and calm thoughts of sugar.