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How to Kick/Hack the Sweeteners Bucket?

by (211)
Updated November 24, 2014 at 3:37 AM
Created May 29, 2012 at 8:34 PM

Yes, damn it, I have a sweet tooth. I have been using sweeteners (Splenda, mostly) as my last refuge, my last remnant (along with dairy -- day one of give-up started today on that front) of modern living prior to going "pure" paleo. I obviously need to go cold turkey, as I did with grains, as I plan to do with dairy, but I'm damned if I won't go kicking and screaming into this much needed endeavor. Any advice? Anyone go through this terror at the prospect of giving up the sweet taste of this chemically-toxic-yet-addictive nectar? Haven't I given up enough already?!?!

But seriously ... help!

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6087 · May 30, 2012 at 6:40 PM

Why ?

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11048 · May 29, 2012 at 9:48 PM

I know for me, berries just don't cut it. When I am having painful cravings for something ooey, gooey, and sweet, I need the juice and fiber from the apple or orange to satisfy my cravings. I also love frozen grapes because they take me a lot longer to eat.

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11581 · May 29, 2012 at 9:12 PM

or even better, some low sugar but flavorful fruit like berries.

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11048 · May 29, 2012 at 8:58 PM

I think I'd rather hear that you are using white sugar than Splenda, sugar bombarded with bleach. In all honesty, cold turkey is your best bet. If you absolutely must have something sweet, go for a piece of juicy fruit, e.g. apples, oranges, or grapes.

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6 Answers

best answer

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290 · May 30, 2012 at 5:08 AM

STAY AWAY FROM temptation, for now. Don't go where others are eating it. It is helping me to eat plenty of protein and fat, and salt, for now. I am not worrying about weight or sodium for now. I'm just digging on the flavor of savory. I have actually phased out my morning (and afternoon, and evening...) caffeine hit, and am drinking broth before breakfast instead. This is the mom who snarled at her children for touching her Tastycakes. Within the last 60 days, and was accused by husband of being "greedy" with treats. I really do understand your pain. Sugar is the last of my physical vices, having recovered from drugs and alcohol, and I am ready. I really don't have a choice b/c it is another addiction and it screws my life up. Some of us are like teabags and don't work til we're in hot water.

best answer

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1001 · May 30, 2012 at 2:12 PM

To break a sweet tooth, there's no alternative to avoidance of ALL things sweet. I'd go further - go VLC for a month - nothing remotely sweet EVER during that period. You will find some foods sweeter than you thought - raw almonds, for example, are quite sweet (yes, really!) and still "legal" - but take care not to binge on anything offering such rewards.

The transition to appreciating sweet "hints" in a host of foods will be quite swift. After the month is over - give yourself a special reward - a small piece of dark chocolate (at least 85% cacao) and be amazed at just how sweet that is!

Good luck - it'll be a breeze.

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4176 · May 29, 2012 at 9:53 PM

I agree with cold turkey. Use kombucha to ease into the withdrawal. Once you get over it, you will be amazed how much the "craving" subsides. I find that when I reintroduce anything sweet, I get more intense cravings for days. Chemical sweetners taste horrific once you detox.

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151 · May 29, 2012 at 9:04 PM

I'd definitlely go cold turkey if I were you. I haven't started eating Paleo yet, but I have stopped eating sugar in the past. You will get used to the taste!

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2613 · May 29, 2012 at 8:57 PM

Try real nectar. You know, the kind that bees spit out. Honey is far better for you than any artificial sweetener.

That being said, honey can still over-stimulate your insulin response, so if you're looking to optimize for insulin sensitivity using Paleo, you might be better off weening yourself into fruits. If it's safe for me to assume that your addiction to Splenda and milk are sides to an addiction to coffee, then try eating some berries with your coffee. It'll give you a hit of sweetness without the guilt. Maybe try some pomegranates or blackberries?

Over time, after you've switched over from artificial sugars (and real sugars), you'll probably find that you no longer crave them. I used to have quite a sweet tooth, but nowadays I don't break a sweat when walking past an open box of donuts.

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11581 · May 29, 2012 at 9:12 PM

Cold turkey absolutely. And don't sub in honey or extra sweet fruit or any other sweet thing while you do cold turkey. It's kind of like the heroin addicts who wind up with a serious methadone habit.

Eating a big protein and fat rich breakfast helps immensely in fending off cravings. As you'll read all over this site - if you have really bad cravings for sugary stuff, eat some fat.

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