30

Sep

Reduce Sugar

Notice I don’t insist that you eliminate sugar totally. It would be great if you could, but I’m being realistic. Sugar is deeply embedded in our lives. It’s everywhere, hidden in unexpected foodstuffs such as tomato sauce, mayonnaise, and sauerkraut, and it’s a big part of the rituals surrounding meals and social exchanges ( serving a luscious dessert, bringing candy to a hostess). More to the point, we love it. Sugar is a truly addictive substance, no easier to quit than nicotine. Even cutting down on it is tough. So to bolster your resolve, consider whether the pleasure of that muffin in the morning is really worth suffering pain for. Or that bowl of granola (even “health food” cereals are full of sweetener)? Or that piece of cheesecake or glass of juice? Measure your enjoyment of these trees against your desire to get rid of your pain, and see which weighs heavier in the scale.

Sugar attaching to the proteins in fascia, triggering a chemical reaction that makes these proteins stiff and tough – the opposite of what you’re trying to achieve with the stretches. If this stiffening process goes on for a long time, the body views the affected tissue as foreign and attacks it, leading to an inflammatory reaction.

If like most of us you can’t live without something sweet, look for one of these ingredients on the label.

Stevia comes from the leaves of a naturally sweet plant and is available as a powder or liquid. It’s actually far sweeter than sugar, use just a tiny bit to avoid an unpleasant aftertaste.

Inositol is a naturally sweet nutrient found in many plant foods. You can get it as a powder to sprinkle on foods.

Harden your resolve, go through your cupboards, and toss out everything that looks like cookies, doughnuts, cakes, soda and juice ( even health food juices). All these products have sky-high sugared content. If you must have fruit, eat whole fruit, which includes fiber, the way nature intended you to eat it. ( Never eat fruit that’s frozen or packed in cans, which usually has sugar added to it).

Yes it is hard to live without dessert. But you don’t have to. I do my desert shopping in the health food store, finding products that use healthier sugar substitutes. Instead of a muffin or Danish in the morning, try a small bowl of organic oatmeal with a few drops of stevia and about a dozen chopped organic almonds or walnuts. Not only will you spare your body some inflammation-promoting sugar, you’ll get real nutrition that will keep you going until lunch, without needing a sugary snack at 11am.

 

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