This is the time of year where anything and everything is going around. I’m somewhat of a germaphobe. Just typing the word “flu” makes be break out in a sweat and get a stomach ache. Seriously.
I carry wipes every I go, saline my nose, take vitamins and probiotics, drink bone broth, take elderberry…let’s see…is that all? oh – and I try to avoid sick people. obviously. Maybe “somewhat” is more like “absolutely”.
I read an article years ago (find here) that I think of all the time. It was basically about what sugar does to your body and how much it takes a toll on your immune system – for 6 hours to be exact. “Sugar lowers immunities for 6 hours because infection-fighting white blood cells get tied up attacking the inflammation sugar causes and can’t protect against opportunistic germs.” So – when the holidays come around we are around a bunch of different people with different germs and then we eat sugar sugar sugar …and then…we get sick! Isn’t that interesting?
Here’s a few tips that I find to be very helpful –
1) Eliminate all sugar drinks. Replace them with water, herbal teas, and fermented drinks like kombucha or water kefir and fermented ginger ale. I don’t have a terribly hard time with this one. I’ve never been much of a soda or juice drinker.
2) Limit sugar foods to 3x/week. I like to save my “sugar” for Friday night and Saturday night.
3) Eat at least three nutrient-dense meals each day, including lots of healthy fats (butter, sour cream, lard, tallow, coconut oil, palm oil, and olive oil). Fats slow the rate at which sugar hits the blood stream and also can satisfy your appetite for a longer time— eat a spoonful of coconut oil when a craving threatens – if you can get it down 🙂 It’s really not that bad.
4) Then replace white sugar with natural sugars like maple sugar, dehydrated cane crystals, and raw, unfiltered honey (beware: most grocery store honey is imported from questionable foreign sources and often watered down with sugar and high fructose corn syrup). Try and find a local honey guy.
5) Get plenty of uninterrupted sleep. Too little sleep affects blood sugar regulation and, when chronic, can lead to diabetes and adrenal fatigue. Ok – I’m a mom. this doesn’t happen. ever.
6) Address the emotional reasons you love sugary foods. This is especially important at holiday times, family gatherings, and when you are stressed. I admit – I can be a stress eater. Sometimes a chocolate chip cookie can heal the heart – just maybe 1 or 2 – not 10.
7) Use things other than food to reward yourself and your children: A special game, a bubble bath, a movie, an extra chapter in that good book you’re reading, a nature walk, a trinket, etc. I need to get better at this. I often bribe Ollie to “sleep all night” or if he eats all of his good food I will give him a sucker (organic of course :)) But still – I need to make treats less sugar treats.
Just a few thoughts – let me know what you think!
We got just a touch of snow last night – the kids are sure enjoying it!