7 Tips to Navigate The Sugar Season

Let’s face it. The Sugar Season has officially started and wherever you are, after Halloween last night, you’ve probably got a bowl of candy staring you down.

It likely took a lot of your willpower to not eat your kiddo’s Halloween stash or the Reese’s Cups, Kit Kat and Butterfingers you had left in your bowl after the final Trick-or-Treater stepped off your porch or to be able to walk right past the bowl with the candy one of your co-workers decided to bring to the office this morning to avoid eating it herself!

We get it. As recovering sugar addicts who pretty much had a constant supply of sugar in one form or another, we know it’s tough to break the addiction. And often it really is an addiction. Sugar actually lights up the same part in the brain in scans that cocaine lights up. It really does give you a ‘high’ and keep you reaching for more so don't be too hard on yourself if you find that you struggle with sugar. You are not alone.

So what’s a gal to do?

Life is messy.

Last night I was sitting at my kitchen table to write a post for our private 14-Day Facebook Community. I was hoping to share something inspiring and positive but I was feeling anything but.

My 16-year old twin boys had been arguing for the previous 20 minutes. They were in what Jill calls 'flipped lid'. The prefrontal cortex is shut down Their emotional brains were in charge and there was no reasoning with them.

The best I could do was to eventually get one of them to go out in the garage where my husband was working on something while the other one stayed inside.

Got Cravings? Do this first.

Are you getting enough water?

It’s the question of the week. Because last week Jill found herself laughing hysterically when she realized her nose was endlessly in the cupboards, the fridge, the pantry. Craving chips, chocolate, fizz, salty, sweet and everything in between.

 

Call it sleep deprivation and fatigue from the adrenaline let down of the amazing NtF Soiree. Call it the luteal phase of her cycle. Call it emotional stress. Call it whatever you want. After pausing to really think it through she realized at the foundational level it was….dehydration.

 

When it comes to cravings (and food in general), sometimes we make things more difficult than they need to be. We want to “fix” our cravings or “remedy” the result of our cravings by restricting, depriving, resisting, skipping meals, exercising more and if you’re honest, beating yourself up.

Rinse and Repeat.

And yet, most of the answers to calming cravings are so simple. It surely needs to be more difficult than sleep and water, right? Well, sometimes it is, but often times it is not. We’ve watched women calm cravings in a matter of days simply by re-establishing some very practical foundational nourishing rhythms that we teach in the 14-Day Reset and our upcoming 28 Days to Calm Your Cravings course: Water, Sleep, Movement, Eating in Rhythm, Slowing Down, Meaningful Connection, Relaxation.

 

Because, collectively, instead of drinking water, we are loading up on coffee, soda, kombucha, juice.

 

Instead of sleeping, we are pushing our threshold on how many more hours we can squeeze out of the day.

 

Instead of moving our bodies more regularly throughout the day, we have large pockets of time where we are working at our computer, sitting with our phones or stressfully running around.

 

Instead of eating in rhythm, we are skipping meals and/or grazing all day (both huge contributors to cravings). In the Reset we teach women how to eat 3 very satisfying nourishing meals each day that carry them from one meal to the next without being hungry or having cravings.

 

Instead of slowing down, we hustle. It’s a buzz word these days. Hustle. But the women we talk to? They truly desire to slow life down. Not speed it up. When we hustle, when we rush, when we push through, we are not able to fully take in the present moment and we miss out on the “sweetness of life.”

 

Instead of meaningful connections, we are running from one commitment to the next, hooked on devices, addicted to social media, checking our phones first thing in the morning and last thing before bed. Do you crave meaningful connections with your kids? Your spouse? Other women? Yourself?

 

Instead of feeling relaxed, we are stressed. Holding on to conversations that didn’t go well. Playing out drama in our heads & to others. Overloading our schedules. Rushing from one commitment to the next without any margin. Stepping on a scale and feeling not enough.

 

We coach women in-depth through all these things in our upcoming program 28 Days to Calm Your Cravings - strategically scheduled around Halloween and the holidays. If you’re looking for support to understand your cravings (and ultimately to experience more joy, calm, pleasure, relaxation and connection in your every life), we invite you to join us.

 

Today, we’ll leave you with just one place to begin to help calm those cravings.

 

Let’s start with rehydration.

 

Most of us are walking around in a state of dehydration and that messes with every part of our health from feeling lethargic and moody to being achy and on edge. When you drink a glass of warm water with lemon first thing in the morning you are not only rehydrating your body and mind, you’re also waking up your digestive system and getting things moving.

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Drinking a glass of warm lemon water in the morning is a way to start your self-love out right from the moment you get up. Your mind might be saying, “check your email, scroll Instagram, check the weather, start packing lunches, get those kids up quick” as well as all kinds of other tasks, but your body would love it if you took 5 minutes to sip a warm glass of water with the juice from 1/2 a lemon squeezed in.

 

Drinking your water warm in the morning - room temperature - is more supportive to your digestion than drinking cold water. The lemon in the water can boost your immune system and help flush out toxins created and moved around while your body was in repair and clean-up mode as you slept. It also helps to alkalize your body. Too often because of sugar, grains, too much meat and dairy, along with chronic stress, our bodies are very acidic, which is the perfect state for disease.

 

Alkalize your body with lemon water (and deep breathing too, but we’ll get to that in another post).

 

If you are a sweets lover and tend to over-indulge in sugar, drinking lemon water in the morning will help curb those cravings. Drinking or eating foods with bitterness, like lemons or raw apple cider vinegar, help retrain your taste buds and bring them back into the ‘normal’ range. After about 21 days of drinking lemon water every morning, you may just notice that the sweets you love right now are much too sweet and not as appealing.

 

In addition to your morning water, whenever you find a craving coming on, drink a glass of water first and give it a few minutes. You might simply be dehydrated.

Several years ago, Jill worked with a woman with an intense diet coke addiction. Along with some other foundational practices, Jill shared that whenever she was ready to reach for her diet coke, drink a glass of water first. Hour after hour. Day after day. Week after week. 2 months later, her client returned to a session with her bright blue eyes and a big fat smile and said “I haven’t had a diet coke in 2 weeks. This water thing is pretty powerful.”

 

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Back to Jill’s story, do you know what Jill started doing after realizing she was dehydrated last week? She created a game called “Throw-anything-that-looks-good-in-your-water.”

This week was pineapple, mint, orange, lemon, lime, parsley. Bonus points for a clear mason jar and a fun glass straw. (We LOVE www.strawesome.com if you’re on the hunt for some glass straws.)

If you find yourself with a craving, hydrate first. And share with us! Tag us on FB and on IG at @nourishtoflourishsociety.

 

My Breast Cancer Scare

Everything in my being told me to say no to putting a tiny piece of metal into my breast during a biopsy but I couldn't find my voice to tell the doctor doing the biopsy to stop. When the nurse had reviewed the pre-procedure paperwork with me and mentioned this part of the procedure I had a red-flag about it but didn't ask any questions. She  had said it was a way to 'find' the spot again if the biopsy came back positive so I went with that instead of asking more questions. 

I was scared and felt totally untrusting of my instinct and my body in that moment. I had three kids under four years old at the time. My holistic MD had suggested I get a Therma-Scan, which is a breast health screening technology that often alerts you to cancer many years before a mammogram is able to. When the results came back they weren't so great. In fact, they showed that I had had metabolic changes that indicated there was a chance that cancer had already developed or that my body was heading in that direction. 

Panic set in and I contacted my doctor right away. He said because of my results and my age he wanted me to have further screening and we set-up a mammogram. Those results were inconclusive because of dense breast tissue, I ended up having ultrasounds and ultimately an MRI. Results of all this testing showed that there were some suspicious spots and it was recommended that I have the breast biopsy.