Do you feel tired throughout the day? Do you need coffee to jumpstart your morning? Do you crave caffeine or sweets to give you the energy to get through the day? If you answered yes or even “may….be” to any of these, then FATIGUE may be driving your sugar addiction.
Since Red Bull was introduced in 1997, so called “energy drinks” have exploded in popularity. Each 16 ounce can contains 52 grams of sugar. Let’s do the math….4 grams of sugar per teaspoon…..52 divided by 4…. that is 13 teaspoons of sugar. Wow. There are more than 500 on the market with millions of dollars in sales. Like soda, the basic ingredients are caffeine and sugar, giving an immediate boost in energy. One to three hours later, your blood sugar starts to crash and you feel more exhausted than ever. THEN YOU CRAVE MORE SUGAR. Fatigue drives the sugar cravings and then the sugar cravings cause more fatigue. It’s an endless roller coaster that leaves you feeling worse than ever.
Who is typically in this category? Anyone, in any walk of life, who never seems to have enough hours in the day can fall into this vicious cycle. SOUND FAMILIAR? Fuel for the addiction is typically easily within reach. While sugar-laden, caffeinated drinks seem like a great short-term solution, they are ENERGY ZAPPERS in the long run. The excessive doses of caffeine and sugar contribute to increased blood pressure and deter weight loss goals.
START SOMEWHERE STRATEGIES to increase energy and get off of the sugar and caffeine roller coaster:
- Water: One of the major causes of fatigue is low-level dehydration. I like to refer to water as “God’s energy drink”! Add fruit like blueberries or strawberries to your water and enjoy enticing “spa water.”
- Taper slowly: If you are drinking 3 energy drinks per day, pour a little out before you take your first drink. Work your way down to zero slowly. Withdrawal symptoms will be less severe.
- Green Tea: It has a smaller amount of caffeine than coffee and many health benefits, including decreased risk of heart disease and cancer.
- Protein Shakes: A common cause of fatigue is lack of protein. A high quality nutrient-dense protein shake is a sustainable protein boost. For a copy of my daily shake recipe, Dr. Debbie’s Longevity Shake, click here.
- Plan ahead: Have frequent, small meals and carry a nutritious snack. When I get hungry, I get mean. I don’t want to be mean! I keep a bag of raw mixed nuts with me for those desperate moments.
Remember my motto “Everything is difficult before it becomes easy.” LIVE YOUNGER by changing your strategy when you feel the urge to grab a caffeinated sugar snack. START SOMEWHERE today for a happier and healthier future. You can do it.