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Carb addiction- split topic

usmcmpusmcmp Posts: 21,339Member, Premium Member Posts: 21,339Member, Premium Member
This discussion was created from replies split from another carb addicted thread. Let's keep the debate in here please.
edited April 2016

Replies

  • 3bambi33bambi3 Posts: 1,652Member Member Posts: 1,652Member Member
    Some people will tell you you’re ridiculous to think you’re addicted to carbs, but I know sugar addiction is a real thing! Very recently, I’ve learned to treat it like any other addiction. I know I can’t eat sugar “in moderation” and be healthy. Eating it in moderation leads to intensified cravings and overeating. Just like you wouldn’t encourage a recovering alcoholic to drink "just a little" because it’s New Year, a birthday party, promotion, etc. I’m on day 72 of no added sugars and no flours. I still eat natural sugar (fruit) and whole grains, but nothing refined. I can’t believe how much my cravings have been reduced!! I no longer wonder each day if I’m going to go home from work and binge that night. I’ve never felt more in control of what goes in my mouth. My goal is to keep this up at least until I reach my ultimate goal weight – possibly for the rest of my life. My relationship with food is not healthy.

    So what in the 'processed' sugar makes it addictive? And how is 'natural' sugar less addictive?
  • 3bambi33bambi3 Posts: 1,652Member Member Posts: 1,652Member Member
    reejak wrote: »
    Something to help this is to go on a 2-3 day fast.....either with water only or natural fruit juices. I did this and it reset my palate to crave what I put in front of me after the fast (the rainbow of foods). Also, you could try the 10 day green smoothie challenge that everyone is craving about.

    Your solution for someone wanting to lower carbs and sugar is to suggest a diet of only carbs and sugar?
  • janejellyrolljanejellyroll Posts: 20,809Member Member Posts: 20,809Member Member
    reejak wrote: »
    Something to help this is to go on a 2-3 day fast.....either with water only or natural fruit juices. I did this and it reset my palate to crave what I put in front of me after the fast (the rainbow of foods). Also, you could try the 10 day green smoothie challenge that everyone is craving about.

    A fruit juice fast would be virtually 100% carbohydrates. This is an odd recommendation to make to someone who is seeking advice for an addiction to carbs. Green smoothies are also going to be mostly carbohydrates.
  • cwolfman13cwolfman13 Posts: 36,805Member Member Posts: 36,805Member Member
    Carbohydrates cover a much broader scope than just junk food. Oats are carbs, beans are carbs, lentils are carbs, brown rice is carbs, quinoa is carbs, whole grain breads are carbs, fruits are carbs, vegetables are carbs....


    reejak wrote: »
    Something to help this is to go on a 2-3 day fast.....either with water only or natural fruit juices. I did this and it reset my palate to crave what I put in front of me after the fast (the rainbow of foods). Also, you could try the 10 day green smoothie challenge that everyone is craving about.

    natural fruit juices would be a crap ton of carbs.
  • message4michellemessage4michelle Posts: 19Member Member Posts: 19Member Member
    3bambi3 wrote: »
    Some people will tell you you’re ridiculous to think you’re addicted to carbs, but I know sugar addiction is a real thing! Very recently, I’ve learned to treat it like any other addiction. I know I can’t eat sugar “in moderation” and be healthy. Eating it in moderation leads to intensified cravings and overeating. Just like you wouldn’t encourage a recovering alcoholic to drink "just a little" because it’s New Year, a birthday party, promotion, etc. I’m on day 72 of no added sugars and no flours. I still eat natural sugar (fruit) and whole grains, but nothing refined. I can’t believe how much my cravings have been reduced!! I no longer wonder each day if I’m going to go home from work and binge that night. I’ve never felt more in control of what goes in my mouth. My goal is to keep this up at least until I reach my ultimate goal weight – possibly for the rest of my life. My relationship with food is not healthy.

    So what in the 'processed' sugar makes it addictive? And how is 'natural' sugar less addictive?

    I’m not a scientist, so bear with me. I’ll explain it as well as I understand it. When sugar is eaten in its natural form (fruit, vegetables, grains…) it is different in 2 major ways from processed sugar. First, it is less sweet. This causes our brains to have less of a “reward response” when eating it. Second, the sugar is combined with other nutrients, particularly fiber, that cause the sugar to be absorbed into our system differently (more slowly, maybe… not sure exactly). Processed sugars include not just normal crystalized sugar, but also fruit juice, any form of syrup, and dried fruit, as these are all forms of condensed sugar content.
    edited April 2016
  • senecarrsenecarr Posts: 5,377Member Member Posts: 5,377Member Member
    Some people will tell you you’re ridiculous to think you’re addicted to carbs, but I know sugar addiction is a real thing! Very recently, I’ve learned to treat it like any other addiction. I know I can’t eat sugar “in moderation” and be healthy. Eating it in moderation leads to intensified cravings and overeating. Just like you wouldn’t encourage a recovering alcoholic to drink "just a little" because it’s New Year, a birthday party, promotion, etc. I’m on day 72 of no added sugars and no flours. I still eat natural sugar (fruit) and whole grains, but nothing refined. I can’t believe how much my cravings have been reduced!! I no longer wonder each day if I’m going to go home from work and binge that night. I’ve never felt more in control of what goes in my mouth. My goal is to keep this up at least until I reach my ultimate goal weight – possibly for the rest of my life. My relationship with food is not healthy.

    So like every other addiction, you've managed to detox and remove sugar from your system? I'd like to understand how you did that.

    OP, I honestly think labeling it an addiction is just a label to avoid dealing with it, and it is probably the worse way of trying to label and deal with it. Food isn't like alcohol, nicotine, or drugs - if you want to lose weight, you have to reach a healthy relationship with it that isn't complete abstinence because completely abstaining from all food is called starvation. So I understand the idea that labeling one food a problem, an addiction, seems like it will work just like it works for other things considered an addiction. You know one of the most common things to happen to alcoholics, drug addicts, and smokers who quit? They gain weight because they transfer that emotional impairment to food - cold turkeying sugar, carbs, any food group is just looking to do the same thing transferring a relationship with one food to another. It isn't a game you're going to win.

    Instead, consider starting off removing the foods you don't think you can handle from your environment, but do make an effort to reintroduce them as you build moment in your eating and weight loss habits. The more you make the food something that is forbidden, something more powerful than you, the more it truly is and the more it will just be a greater temptation, and the more reward giving into that temptation will be.
  • senecarrsenecarr Posts: 5,377Member Member Posts: 5,377Member Member
    3bambi3 wrote: »
    Some people will tell you you’re ridiculous to think you’re addicted to carbs, but I know sugar addiction is a real thing! Very recently, I’ve learned to treat it like any other addiction. I know I can’t eat sugar “in moderation” and be healthy. Eating it in moderation leads to intensified cravings and overeating. Just like you wouldn’t encourage a recovering alcoholic to drink "just a little" because it’s New Year, a birthday party, promotion, etc. I’m on day 72 of no added sugars and no flours. I still eat natural sugar (fruit) and whole grains, but nothing refined. I can’t believe how much my cravings have been reduced!! I no longer wonder each day if I’m going to go home from work and binge that night. I’ve never felt more in control of what goes in my mouth. My goal is to keep this up at least until I reach my ultimate goal weight – possibly for the rest of my life. My relationship with food is not healthy.

    So what in the 'processed' sugar makes it addictive? And how is 'natural' sugar less addictive?

    I’m not a scientist, so bear with me. I’ll explain it as well as I understand it. When sugar is eaten in its natural form (fruit, vegetables, grains…) it is different in 2 major ways from processed sugar. First, it is less sweet. This causes our brains to have less of a “reward response” when eating it. Second, the sugar is combined with other nutrients, particularly fiber, that cause the sugar to be absorbed into our system differently (more slowly, maybe… not sure exactly). Processed sugars include not just normal crystalized sugar, but also fruit juice, any form of syrup, and dried fruit, as these are all forms of condensed sugar content.

    You can also increase reward response by denying oneself something. What we think of the reward system chemical, dopamine, is more accurately thought of as the anticipation enhancement neurotransmitter - the more you desire and anticipate a thing, the more dopamine. Absence make the neurotransmitter grow fonder.
  • 3bambi33bambi3 Posts: 1,652Member Member Posts: 1,652Member Member
    3bambi3 wrote: »
    Some people will tell you you’re ridiculous to think you’re addicted to carbs, but I know sugar addiction is a real thing! Very recently, I’ve learned to treat it like any other addiction. I know I can’t eat sugar “in moderation” and be healthy. Eating it in moderation leads to intensified cravings and overeating. Just like you wouldn’t encourage a recovering alcoholic to drink "just a little" because it’s New Year, a birthday party, promotion, etc. I’m on day 72 of no added sugars and no flours. I still eat natural sugar (fruit) and whole grains, but nothing refined. I can’t believe how much my cravings have been reduced!! I no longer wonder each day if I’m going to go home from work and binge that night. I’ve never felt more in control of what goes in my mouth. My goal is to keep this up at least until I reach my ultimate goal weight – possibly for the rest of my life. My relationship with food is not healthy.

    So what in the 'processed' sugar makes it addictive? And how is 'natural' sugar less addictive?

    I’m not a scientist, so bear with me.m I’ll explain it as well as I understand it. When sugar is eaten in its natural form (fruit, vegetables, grains…) it is different in 2 major ways from processed sugar. First, it is less sweet. This causes our brains to have less of a “reward response” when eating it. Second, the sugar is combined with other nutrients, particularly fiber, that cause the sugar to be absorbed into our system differently (more slowly, maybe… not sure exactly). Processed sugars include not just normal crystalized sugar, but also fruit juice, any form of syrup, and dried fruit, as these are all forms of condensed sugar content.

    Cool. So if I eat a cookie with fiber in it =/= addictive.

    Also, do you know the process by which granulated white sugar is produced?
  • Holly_Wood_888Holly_Wood_888 Posts: 261Member Member Posts: 261Member Member

    3bambi3 wrote: »
    3bambi3 wrote: »
    Some people will tell you you’re ridiculous to think you’re addicted to carbs, but I know sugar addiction is a real thing! Very recently, I’ve learned to treat it like any other addiction. I know I can’t eat sugar “in moderation” and be healthy. Eating it in moderation leads to intensified cravings and overeating. Just like you wouldn’t encourage a recovering alcoholic to drink "just a little" because it’s New Year, a birthday party, promotion, etc. I’m on day 72 of no added sugars and no flours. I still eat natural sugar (fruit) and whole grains, but nothing refined. I can’t believe how much my cravings have been reduced!! I no longer wonder each day if I’m going to go home from work and binge that night. I’ve never felt more in control of what goes in my mouth. My goal is to keep this up at least until I reach my ultimate goal weight – possibly for the rest of my life. My relationship with food is not healthy.

    So what in the 'processed' sugar makes it addictive? And how is 'natural' sugar less addictive?

    I’m not a scientist, so bear with me.m I’ll explain it as well as I understand it. When sugar is eaten in its natural form (fruit, vegetables, grains…) it is different in 2 major ways from processed sugar. First, it is less sweet. This causes our brains to have less of a “reward response” when eating it. Second, the sugar is combined with other nutrients, particularly fiber, that cause the sugar to be absorbed into our system differently (more slowly, maybe… not sure exactly). Processed sugars include not just normal crystalized sugar, but also fruit juice, any form of syrup, and dried fruit, as these are all forms of condensed sugar content.

    Cool. So if I eat a cookie with fiber in it =/= addictive.

    Also, do you know the process by which granulated white sugar is produced?


    Refined sugar refers to sugars that have undergone an extraction and purification process, often turning the finished sugars into crystals that are easy to add to foods. Refined sugar typically refers to table sugar, which is most commonly made from sugar cane and sugar beets. During the refining process, the sugars are processed to the point where the nutrients naturally available in the raw foods -- cane and beets -- are lost.


  • Holly_Wood_888Holly_Wood_888 Posts: 261Member Member Posts: 261Member Member
    I was a sugar binger and a compulsive eater - I went off refined sugar for 60 days and just had some on the weekend. Refined sugar is strangely addictive! Personally though, I will have to consume it possibly once a week (cheat meal) because I know if I NEVER eat it again, I will end up binging ... because that's how I grew up - without refined sugar - and it turned me into a sugar binger !

    (watch your labels - they hide it in everything!)
    edited April 2016
  • stevencloserstevencloser Posts: 8,917Member Member Posts: 8,917Member Member
    3bambi3 wrote: »
    3bambi3 wrote: »
    Some people will tell you you’re ridiculous to think you’re addicted to carbs, but I know sugar addiction is a real thing! Very recently, I’ve learned to treat it like any other addiction. I know I can’t eat sugar “in moderation” and be healthy. Eating it in moderation leads to intensified cravings and overeating. Just like you wouldn’t encourage a recovering alcoholic to drink "just a little" because it’s New Year, a birthday party, promotion, etc. I’m on day 72 of no added sugars and no flours. I still eat natural sugar (fruit) and whole grains, but nothing refined. I can’t believe how much my cravings have been reduced!! I no longer wonder each day if I’m going to go home from work and binge that night. I’ve never felt more in control of what goes in my mouth. My goal is to keep this up at least until I reach my ultimate goal weight – possibly for the rest of my life. My relationship with food is not healthy.

    So what in the 'processed' sugar makes it addictive? And how is 'natural' sugar less addictive?

    I’m not a scientist, so bear with me.m I’ll explain it as well as I understand it. When sugar is eaten in its natural form (fruit, vegetables, grains…) it is different in 2 major ways from processed sugar. First, it is less sweet. This causes our brains to have less of a “reward response” when eating it. Second, the sugar is combined with other nutrients, particularly fiber, that cause the sugar to be absorbed into our system differently (more slowly, maybe… not sure exactly). Processed sugars include not just normal crystalized sugar, but also fruit juice, any form of syrup, and dried fruit, as these are all forms of condensed sugar content.

    Cool. So if I eat a cookie with fiber in it =/= addictive.

    Also, do you know the process by which granulated white sugar is produced?


    Refined sugar refers to sugars that have undergone an extraction and purification process, often turning the finished sugars into crystals that are easy to add to foods. Refined sugar typically refers to table sugar, which is most commonly made from sugar cane and sugar beets. During the refining process, the sugars are processed to the point where the nutrients naturally available in the raw foods -- cane and beets -- are lost.


    In what context do you have sugar without any other nutrients? Ican only think of Soda Or hard Candy. In every other Case, sugar will always have nutrients accompanying it.
  • stevencloserstevencloser Posts: 8,917Member Member Posts: 8,917Member Member
    I was a sugar binger and a compulsive eater - I went off refined sugar for 60 days and just had some on the weekend. Refined sugar is strangely addictive! Personally though, I will have to consume it possibly once a week (cheat meal) because I know if I NEVER eat it again, I will end up binging ... because that's how I grew up - without refined sugar - and it turned me into a sugar binger !

    (watch your labels - they hide it in everything!)

    Sugar is not hidden, and tell me, do you Binge on things like Ketchup?
  • mandrewesmandrewes Posts: 24Member Member Posts: 24Member Member
    There are several problems from sugar
    1. The sweet taste of sugar seems to promote a dopamine/reward response as do the tastes etc. of other types of food. But fructose (half of table sugar - sucrose) does not "turn off" this reward response as it doesn't trigger an insulin response or as far as I am aware any of the other satiety hormones/pathways so we are tempted to go on eating and the sweeter something is the better we think it is and probably the bigger the reward response. Fructose is also processed in the liver which probably is a problem in itself

    2. We now have very concentrated forms of sugar that we rarely encountered in the past - for example a chocolate bar contains ten times the amount of sugar per 100g compared to strawberries. And we don't seem to be good at processing concentrated forms of sugar.

    3. Glucose (the other half of table sugar) when eaten on its own is quickly absorbed into the blood stream. Blood glucose has to be strictly controlled as it is harmful otherwise - so you get a blood glucose spike and crash.

    4. Eating sugar with other things - e.g. fibre seems to reduce this spike - reduces the glycaemic index. Strawberries are about 10 times less calorie dense and so on a per calorie basis have about 7 times as much fibre as chocolate and raspberries have about twice as much fibre per gram as strawberries.

    So given the desire to eat sweet things, the reward when we do, the calorie dense nature of cakes, sweets and sweet drinks, the lack of a satiety hormone response - either fructose (probably) not providing it or glucose providing it briefly, the lack of fibre which delays digestion/absorption and the lack of the volume to trigger satiety - it is easy to see why it is easy to binge on them.

    The lessons would seem to be that it is probably mostly "best" to get a "sugar fix" eating whole fruits (that also have other good micro-nutrients) and sugar/refined carbs as part of a meal of other things - fibre, protein, fat to cut down on bingeing. At the very least whole fruits provide volume which then can then trigger a satiety response.

    While it is easy to hypothesize about what would have happened in the past without knowing but it is easy to see that bingeing on fruit would have been good and indeed you would want to eat as much as possible and it would soon be followed by scarcity of the winter months so a fatty liver was not a problem as fasting/calorie restriction probably reverses this. It is also interesting how little sugar the fruits provide - they only want to provide enough to attract fruit eating animals while not wasting energy. We can now "hype" the sugar content of foods easily, cheaply and almost at will.

    Pass me another chocolate bar!!!!
  • eldamianoeldamiano Posts: 2,667Member Member Posts: 2,667Member Member
    No such thing as a carb addiction, or you would be throwing kilos of sugar directly down your neck....
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