The seven stages of sugar withdrawal
With addictiveness similar to cocaine, quitting sugar can come with a host of not-so-fun withdrawal symptoms. But before you give up on giving up, these steps can prepare you for what to expect when you decide to cut out sugar. And show you why it’s all worth it in the end!
1. Okay, this seems easy enough.
During the first stages, your body hasn’t been alerted to the fact that you’re no longer pumping fructose into your system. With your delicious and detoxing recipes, you’ll feel on top of the world. What cravings?
2. The cravings kick in.
Fructose is one addictive beast and it won’t let go of you without a fight. Plus, the temptation will be everywhere. Some Programmers have actually told us they’d have dreams about giving into their cravings and bingeing on sweet treats. Stay strong. Eat some protein. The best is yet to come.
3. Headaches, Oh, the headaches.
But not before the headaches. Much like when you give up that other addictive vice, caffeine, headaches are a very commonly reported symptom of sugar withdrawal. Time to invest in some aromatherapy oils, and make sure to drink plenty of water (especially if soft drinks or juice were your main source of hydration beforehand).
4. You may feel some aches and pains.
Some Programmers report aches and pains, or even flu-like symptoms, in the throes of withdrawal. One remedy we’d vouch for is a warm bath with Epsom salts, which studies have suggested may help flush out environmental toxins. But if you feel really out of sorts, check yourself out with a doctor.
5. Mood swings maybe… less than pleasant.
At this point, your brain receptors are screaming sugar! Between that and the headaches and the cravings, you may understandably have some mood swings. It’s helpful to have a solid support network around you during this stage, to help you remember why you started.
6. Some people even get “the shakes”.
Just like a T. Swift song, your body may need to “shake it off, shake it off”. Mild tremors are linked to stress and blood sugar drops, so try having a snack or herbal tea to see if that helps. And do see a doctor if you are worried.
7. But suddenly, you’ll come out the other side feeling better than ever.
It could be a few days or a few weeks, but you’ll suddenly “get” what everyone was talking about. You’ll feel brighter, clearer and better than ever, as each day without the white stuff gets easier. No more cravings, no more blood sugar roller coasters, no more sugar-related headaches or 3pm slumps.