When it comes down to it, your cravings for sugar are actually based in necessity. Without sugar, we would literally be unable to produce energy and ATP for our continued function and survival. It’s a small wonder that we’ve evolved to love the taste of sweetness. It supplies a relaxation response during stressful periods and provides a quick boost of energy when we need that second wind.
But how much sugar do our bodies really need? Americans had been turning to super-sized sodas and endless walls of candy and cookies, which clearly aren’t the best things for our bodies. We all know that natural sugars, like fresh fruits, are healthier than ice cream or a candy bar. Given the drastic increase in obesity and metabolic syndrome in the past few decades, mainstream America is finally wising up. Many people are realizing that too much of a good thing can harm your health. However, many consumers are going to the other extreme, omitting sugar and sweets entirely from their diet.
Despite the research evidence, is this shift from one extreme to the other really healthy? According to eastern nutrition, the taste of sweet is actually beneficial for your digestive organs. When out of balance and low in energy, your Stomach and Spleen (just like you) crave sugar to stimulate and boost their functioning.
What many people don’t realize is that when you cut sweetness out of your diet entirely and ignore any sugar cravings, your digestive organs can become even more out of balance, often causing binge behaviors or metabolic dysfunctions. It’s all about moderation, because we need sugar to survive. Dessert after meals is a millennia-old, cross-cultural phenomenon for a reason. Life needs sweet — and so does your body.
Make better choices when it comes to satisfying your sweet tooth!
- Genetically modified sugar is in the majority of the candy and sweets that we enjoy. Find an alternate, like organic or fair-trade chocolates that have been harvested in an eco-friendly way.
- Snack on a juicy apple or fresh peach from your local farmer’s market.
- Turn fresh fruits into sweet (and savory) dishes, like pies and crumbles.
- Turn fresh fruits into a refreshing smoothie.
- Make a homemade trail mix with nuts and dried fruits. Walnuts, pine nuts, dried cranberries, and dried apples make for a great (and sweet!) pick-me-up.