The Low Down on Sugar and Refined Sugar-Free Cookie Skillet Recipe
Sugar is a confusing topic because sugar is in highly nutritious foods like fruit but also in unhealthy foods like candy. Then, it gets hidden in foods that people think are healthy but truthfully are not like white bread, pasta, sauces, crackers, and more!
So why is sugar so bad for you? Well unfortunately it has been linked to greatly increasing your chances of obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer, intestinal permeability, and more.
So what's the verdict? I am not telling you that you can never have sugar again - just remember to have everything in moderation. Consider swapping your white sugar for maple syrup or honey and switching to sauces, crackers, and other foods that don't contain hidden sugars but when you have sugar - enjoy it for what it is.
With that being said "healthier" options are still sugars and react similarly in your body so try not too get too worried about it and just enjoy it in moderation!
The Low Down on Sugar
Research is linking the high consumption of refined sugars to many diseases. Refined sugar is in a lot of packaged and processed foods, which makes it difficult to reduce sugar and quit your addiction!
Because sugar is in everything, it’s important that you read labels.
Juice, dressings, sauces, dried fruit, granola bars, yogurt, bread, cereal, crackers, lunch meat, and more!
Not all sugars are created equally. Try to stick to alternate forms of sugar such as coconut sugar, maple syrup and honey.
Sugar has many names: cane sugar, fructose, glucose, sucrose, dextrose, cane juice, beet juice, raw sugar, corn syrup, maltose, and more!
Do you have intense sugar cravings? You may want to try omitting it from your diet for a short period of time. Not as a "diet" but to help balance blood sugars and make it easier for you to enjoy sugar in moderation long-term. We at Simply Nic are NOT about diets!
No sugar for 7 days. Plain and simple.
This also means eating foods without coconut sugar, maple syrup and honey since they cause similar reactions in your body as cane sugar.
WHAT ABOUT FRUIT?
Fruit is fine during the week but try to have it in moderation.
Tracking food can be triggering for some especially if they have a history of an eating disorder or disordered eating. For others, it can be helpful for them to notice where they can reduce sugar intake and when they find they crave it the most.
WHAT TO EXPECT
Your body may go through a bit of a “detox”. Some people don’t have any symptoms while others may experience extreme cravings, headaches, aches, shakes, and mood swings. Don’t worry - these symptoms will subside and you will start feeling great!
Although it’s good to give your body a break from sugar from time to time, I encourage you to focus more on moderation. Cutting it out completely may cause you to crave it more and binge on it.
Beat the Cravings
You have to cut out all sugar, even in sauces and bread, to make it a true sugar detox.
Drink lots of water. This will help you stay hydrated and full. Hunger can often be mistaken for dehydration!
Make sure you are getting enough protein and healthy fats at each meal to keep you fuller for longer.
Some people find they want sweets after a meal, especially ones heavy in onions and garlic. Try tongue scraping, or brushing your teeth after meals, to keep your mouth feeling fresh.
Get your family and/or friends involved to help motivate each other!
WHAT CAN YOU HAVE?
If you feel a craving coming on, try drinking water or having some apple slices with almond or sunflower seed butter. There are even some companies that make sugar free chocolate!
SPICE IT UP
Keep meals flavourful with lots of herbs and spices!
Being deficient in certain minerals like zinc and magnesium can lead to sugar cravings. Making sure you are consuming adequate amounts of chromium can also be helpful!
AMP UP THE GREENS
Incorporate more green smoothies, juices, and salads. You may be surprised that you start to crave them after a bit!
Do you find that you are prone to reaching for sweet treats when you are stressed or emotional? Try reducing stress and only eating when you are truly hungry.
Need some help controlling blood sugar levels and are experiencing intense sugar cravings? There may be deeper imbalances that need to be addressed. Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more about meal plans and coaching!
Chocolate Chip Skillet Cookie
Saying this is "healthy" might be a stretch LOL but this tasty treat is a great option for people with food sensitivities and can be easily altered to fit different needs or even what you might have in your cupboards!
Check out the recipe below and I hope you enjoy! :)
Ingredients Please note - this is was done in a 10 1/4 inch cast iron pan. If you have a smaller pan you can probably cut this recipe in half
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 cups almond flour, oat flour or coconut flour - may have to adjust liquids in order to compensate for different flours
- 2 eggs (or 2 chia eggs)
- 1 cup dairy-free chocolate chips or chocolate of your choice! Seen people use sugar-free chocolate which is a great option!
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 cup peanut butter
- 1/2 cup ghee (or coconut oil)
- 2/3-1 cup coconut sugar (adjust based on how sweet you want it)
- Note: you may need a dash of milk if batter is dry. This may be dependent on the type of flour you use
- Preheat oven to 350F
- Mix the vanilla, egg. peanut butter, ghee together
- In a separate bowl mix the flour, chocolate chips, baking soda, and coconut sugar
- Combine the dry and wet ingredients
- If you find that the batter is still really dry then add a dash of plant-based milk until its well mixed
- Grease your cast iron pan with oil of your choice
- Add mixture and bake for 30-40 minutes or until the center is cooked
- Remove from oven and let cool. Note - it will still continue to cook a bit in the cast iron pan
*I cooked mine for 40 minutes and it was nice and crispy on the outside and just a little soft in the middle