Why Try a Sugar Detox?
Eating a diet free of grains, dairy, and refined sugar has proven to be a great fit for me and my diabetes management. A couple weeks ago, I took Paleo a step further with a weeklong “detox” of all sugar including fruit and natural sweeteners such as honey and pure maple syrup. As a diabetic, I couldn’t be completely strict about the “no-sugar” plan as I obviously treated low blood sugars as needed (typically with a handful of raisins).
It was a pretty eye-opening week. First of all, I gave myself hardly any fast acting insulin. Instead, I increased my basal insulin dose to compensate and to cover the delayed blood sugar rises brought on by high protein meals. Secondly, my blood sugars remained remarkably stable. It’s amazing how easy it was to keep my blood sugar in range when I wasn’t eating any sugar or giving myself fast acting insulin. I’ve always told people that the trick to managing diabetes is balancing carbohydrates versus insulin. It seems another option is to avoid the balancing act by not eating much carbohydrate (especially fructose or refined sugar) in the first place!
Finally, this brief break from all sweet foods (artificial sweeteners were also banned) kind of reset my taste buds. Everything savory tasted really delicious! Also, sweeter vegetables like red bell pepper tasted really sweet to me. Eating a Paleo diet in general has helped me to enjoy the taste of real food instead of comparing it to the processed foods that are so prevalent in our American diet.
The biggest reason folks advocate for a sugar detox is to cut ones craving for sugar. It definitely does that too. So, if you’re looking for a way to keep yourself from reaching for sweets and goodies, try swearing off them for a week or so. See what it does to your cravings and diabetes management. I’m very interested in the experiences and insights other people have… please share!