Less Sugar, More Health

I have been searching for a way to reduce my consumption of sugar, especially in the form of candy. I have been aware I needed to do this…and that is the first step in making permanent change. Candy is a cheap fix…and always has been attractive to me to eat. I remember walking to the local neighborhood drugstore, selecting, buying and eating four different ones one right after the other, when still a young teenager.  I still can binge from time to time as a “mature” adult. This past Easter season, I was addicted to Reese’s Peanut Butter Eggs. I could not get enough of them and was eating at least two every day in the weeks leading up to Easter.  No joke…and it didn’t help when they went on sale.

However, in hindsight, I find I experience less joy long-term in this habit, more of medicating through low energy and fatigue periods and no progress on health. I am recognizing that my desire for optimal health is slowly working its way to the motivational level to take action on points of difficult change, focusing attention to take the next step. I decided to start cutting out sugar once I read about the connection between sugar, adrenal fatigue and anxiety a month or so ago. Experiencing a recent bout with anxiety reinforced my efforts to get serious.

However, it was more intervention and being mindful that made this next step happen. I had a craving for candy and I usually stop in a drugstore to get it. As an aside, I love drugstores. I shop in them all the time and worked in one during my senior year in high school. So many solutions to life’s beauty and health problems! Anyway, I had recently discovered a new beverage, SoBe Lifewater Zero Calorie, which I had been drinking occasionally on the go when I needed to take supplements. I checked the refrigerator case and there was one in my favorite flavor, so I grabbed that instead. I have been doing this for the last couple of weeks and it is working. I look at candy bars and know there is a better choice plus it also satisfies my craving for something sweet. I don’t drink this on a regular basis; I save it as a treat.

Health purists may not see this as a victory but I do. It works to modify a habit until I can achieve a higher stress threshold or corrective nutrition for my body to ease the cravings. Progress is all in the small steps of action and discovery. The “sugar” content consists of erythritol (sugar alcohol) and PureVia, a stevia-based product.

BodyEcology.com lists a few things that make erythritol a standout as a sugar alcohol.

  • Fermented – It is made by fermenting the natural sugar found in corn.
  • Heat stable – Up to 160 degrees C.
  • Non-caloric – While most sugar alcohols are low calorie, erythritol has zero calories.
  • Non-glycemic – Does not raise blood sugar – erythritol is considered suitable for people with diabetes because it does not raise plasma glucose or insulin levels.
  • The easiest sugar alcohol to digest – More than 90% of erythritol is absorbed in the small intestine, so minimal amounts reach the colon where other sugar alcohols end up causing diarrhea and other symptoms. Studies have shown that erythritol is even easier to digest than xylitol.
  • Noncarcinogenic– Studies have shown that erythritol, like xylitol, does not have carcinogenic properties.
  • An antioxidant – Erythritol helps to fight free radicals, responsible for the aging process. It is considered to be even more efficient than other sugar alcohols because it is so readily absorbed and yet not metabolized (it is excreted unchanged).
  • Does not promote Candida – We do recommend most sugar alcohols over even natural sugars because sugars feed candida, contributing to systemic fungal infections.
  • Generally recognized as safe (GRAS) – Erythritol has the status of GRAS from the FDA and is widely used in many other countries like Japan, the European Union, Mexico and Canada.

Rita 🙂

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1 Comment »

  1. Ricki said

    I can soooo relate! I’ve never tried erythritol (sounds too much like a chemical to me) but maybe I’ll reconsider now!

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