Food

What Not To Do When You Go Off Sugar

 

What Not To Do When Going Off Sugar

If you think going off sugar is a good idea, you’re definitely on the track towards vital and vibrant health.

 

Removing sugar from your diet is a smart way to lose weight, increase your energy levels and improve your mood, but only if you do it the right way.

 

So often people get rid of sugar without really knowing what to do. Here are my top tips for making sure you get the results you’re after when you eliminate sugar.

 

What Not to Do

 

Don’t get rid of sugar and fat at the same time

 

Maybe you think you’ll kill two birds with one stone and cut fat at the same time as sugar. First of all, fat doesn’t make you fat, sugar does. Even if you eat 4 tablespoons of coconut oil in one sitting, you’ll STILL lose weight if you cut sugar. Fat is essential for stabilizing blood sugar levels and curbing your sugar cravings, so make sure you get plenty of healthy fat at every meal.

 

Don’t drink or eat “diet” anything

 

Aspartame is NOT healthy and will make it so much harder for you to lose weight. It’s totally toxic and was originally invented as a type of rat poison. Practically everything labeled diet or sugar-free has aspartame so stay away from anything with these labels.

 

Don’t load up on natural sugar like dried fruit and bananas

 

Some natural sugar is okay if there’s enough fiber to counter the insulin spike. Bananas and dried fruits like dates are notoriously high in sugar and will make it all the more difficult to eliminate cravings.

 

Don’t keep eating bread and refined carbohydrates

 

Bread and refined carbohydrates like pasta, potatoes, and white rice, don’t look like they contain sugar, but these foods break down into sugar once digested. If you keep eating them, you’ll keep craving sugar, and you’ll wonder what you’re doing wrong.

 

Don’t be too hard on yourself if you mess up

 

Everyone slips up now and again. Be gentle with yourself if you make a mistake or have a weak moment and vow to keep trying. Don’t let one slip upstart you on an outright binge.

 

Want even more great tips to help you lose weight, improve your digestion, increase your energy and end your sugar addiction once and for all?

 

Click here to get on the list to be notified of my NEW Sugar-detox programs coming soon!

 

To your wellness,

Paige

 

This post may contain affiliate links. I may receive commissions for purchases made through links in this post at no additional cost to you. 

Three Must Eat Sugar-Free Breakfast Foods

Do you love your breakfast?  Do you have a short list of “go-to” recipes?  Do you need a bit of inspiration to start eating breakfast again?

 

Getting some protein at each meal can help with blood sugar management, metabolism, and weight loss. 

This is because protein helps you feel fuller longer and uses up a bunch of calories to absorb and metabolize it. 

So I’m going to show you how to get the protein, as well as some veggies and healthy fats for your soon-to-be favorite new “go-to” sugar-free and Candida-diet friendly breakfasts.

 

Breakfast Food #1: Eggs

Are eggs a healthy choice for breakfast? Check out these three must eat sugar-free breakfast foods with recipes.

Yes, eggs are the “quintessential” breakfast food.  And for good reason!

No, I’m not talking about processed egg whites in a carton.  I mean actual whole “eggs”. 

Egg whites are mostly protein while the yolks are the real nutritional powerhouses.  Those yolks contain vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and healthy fats.

Eggs have been shown to help you feel full, keep you feeling fuller longer, and help to stabilize blood sugar and insulin.

Not to mention how easy it is to boil a bunch of eggs and keep them in the fridge for a “grab and go” breakfast when you’re running short on time.

And…nope the cholesterol in eggs is not associated with an increased risk of arterial or heart diseases. 

One thing to consider is to try to prevent cooking the yolks at too high of a temperature because that can cause some of the cholesterol to become oxidized.  It’s the oxidized cholesterol that’s heart unhealthy.

Tip: Are you buying store brand organic eggs? You’ll be shocked to learn that these are not a healthy choice. Check out Cornucopia.org and specifically this page for an organic egg scorecard to find the healthiest eggs in your area. My favorite are eggs from Vital Farms…the yolks are a beautiful orange color which means healthy eggs and they’re oh so delicious!

 

Breakfast Food #2: Nuts and/or Seeds

 

Nuts and seeds contain protein, healthy fats, vitamins, minerals, and fiber.  Nuts and/or seeds would make a great contribution to breakfast.

Don’t be fooled by “candied” nuts, sweetened nut/seed butter, or chia “cereals” with added sugars – you know I’m talking about the real, whole, unsweetened food here.

Nuts and seeds are also the ultimate fast food if you’re running late in the mornings.  Grab a small handful of almonds, walnuts, or pumpkin seeds as you’re running out the door; you can nosh on them while you’re commuting.

Not to mention how easy it is to add a spoonful of nut or seed butter into your morning breakfast smoothie.

Hint: If you like a creamy latte in the mornings try making one with nut or seed butter.  Just add your regular hot tea and a tablespoon or two of a creamy nut or seed butter in your blender & blend until frothy. 

Tip: Soak your nuts overnight and then dehydrate to make them easier to digest.

 

Breakfast Food #3: Veggies

Breakfast Food: Say Yes to Veggies for Breakfast!

Yes, you already know you really should get protein at every meal including breakfast; but this also applies to veggies.  You know I would be remiss to not recommend veggies at every meal, right? 

Veggies are powerhouses of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, phytochemicals, fiber, and water.  You can’t go wrong adding them to every single meal of the day so if you don’t already you should definitely try them for breakfast! 

And no, you don’t need to have a salad or roasted veggies for breakfast if you don’t want to but you totally can!  You wouldn’t be breaking any “official” breakfast rules or anything like that.

Adding some protein to leftover veggies is a great combination for any meal.  Including breakfast.

I’ve included a delicious recipe below for you to try (and customize) for your next breakfast.

 

Veggie Omelet
Serves 1
A quick and easy sugar-free, Candida-diet friendly breakfast that's healthy and delicious too!
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Ingredients
  1. 1 teaspoon coconut oil
  2. 1 or 2 eggs (how hungry are you?)
  3. ¼ cup veggies (grated zucchini and/or sliced spinach and/or diced peppers)
  4. dash salt, pepper and/or turmeric
Instructions
  1. Add coconut oil to a frying pan and melt on low-medium heat (cast-iron pans are preferred).
  2. In the meantime grab a bowl and beat the egg(s) with your vegetables of choice and the spices.
  3. Tilt pan to ensure the bottom is covered with the melted oil. Pour egg mixture into pan and lightly fry the eggs without stirring.
  4. When the bottom is lightly done flip over in one side and cook until white is no longer runny.
  5. Serve & Enjoy!
  6. Tip: Substitute grated, sliced, or diced portion of your favorite vegetable. Try grated carrots, chopped broccoli, asparagus or diced tomato.
Natural Health Answers http://www.naturalhealthanswers.com/

Check out my other sugar-free, Candida-diet friendly breakfast recipes: Turkey Sausage Patties and  Paige’s Protein Smoothie 

 

References:

http://www.precisionnutrition.com/eggs-worse-than-fast-food

http://www.precisionnutrition.com/encyclopedia/food/eggs/

https://authoritynutrition.com/eating-healthy-eggs/

https://authoritynutrition.com/12-best-foods-to-eat-in-morning/

 

What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast?

 

Genetically Modified Foods: What You Need to Know

What are Genetically Modified Foods?

Genetically Modified (GM) foods are the result of gene technology collaborating with modern agriculture to produce what is perceived as hardier plants. These plants typically have altered DNA that is combined with DNA from viruses, bacteria and other organisms in order to make the plant more disease, drought, and pest resistant. Many producers will argue that gene modification improves food crops. However, several animal studies have linked GM foods to disruption in the immune system, increase in allergies, damage to internal organs, changes in metabolism, and increase in oxidative stress. This type of damage is especially dangerous because it affects so many systems in the body.

GENETICALLY MODIFIED FOODS: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

Long-term studies on the safety of human consumption of GM foods have not been conducted. We have been eating GM foods for only about 20 years, and it has only been in the last 10 years that the rate of consumption has increased due to advances in gene technology. There is no way to determine the long-term effect of eating these kinds of foods until it is studied in more depth.

I personally choose to avoid these foods as my gut feeling is nothing good can come of messing with mother nature in this way and I don’t believe our bodies are equipped to process these altered organisms. I’ve come up with these tips to help you if you feel the same way.

To keep your family safe from GM foods, here are some tips:

1. Buy Organic. Any food labels that say organic on them cannot by virtue of being organic contain any GM foods. This is will be true for produce, as well as meats and dairy. Considering that soy is often a GM food crop, make sure to buy organic for tofu, non-dairy alternatives, and other soy-based products.

 

 

2. Look for GMO-Free Labels. Look on the food label to see if it says whether its GMO free or not. One organization helping with food labeling is the Non GMO Project (http://nongmoproject.org). They verify individual products from food to health and beauty so that you know it is GMO free. Look for their label.

3. Avoid Common GM Foods. Some common GM food crops are corn, soybean, canola, cottonseed, sugar beets, papaya, zucchini, and yellow squash. These foods need to be purchased organically. One problem, is that many of these are used as ingredients in other foods, such as the oil used in a bag of pita chips, or the sugar to flavor a chocolate bar. It’s important to read labels and look for both organic and GMO-free labeling.

4. Use a Shoppers Guide. One great shopping guide is the Non GMO Shopping Guide (http://www.nongmoshoppingguide.com/Non-GMO-Shopping-Guide.pdf). This will give you a list of verified products from condiments and other food items to health, beauty, and hygiene products.

References

20 Questions on Genetically Modified Foods. n.d.World Health Organization Website. http://www.who.int/foodsafety/publications/biotech/20questions/en/

Genetically Modified Foods. n.d. American Academy of Environmental Medicine. 

Non-GMO Shoppers Guide. n.d. NonGMOProject.org  http://www.nongmoshoppingguide.com/

Candida Diet Approved Sweeteners

 Candida Diet Approved Sweeteners

 

When starting a Candida diet or even when a person wants to eat a healthier diet, I always get questions concerning which sweeteners are a good choice:

  • Can I have honey?
  • Okay, I’m giving up sugar but is there something else that I can use as a substitute?
  • Will an artificial sweetener make Candida yeast grow?

The good news is there are some good options but first I will share the sweeteners you’ll want to avoid.  Even if you aren’t on a Candida/Yeast clearing program this information is beneficial for everyone. Sugar in excess in anyone’s diet is a hazard to your health.  

The No No’s

High fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is at the top of that ‘NO’ list as far as I’m concerned. This means no commercial sodas — which all contain HFCS.

There has been a flurry of interest in a cactus-based sweetener called agave nectar, because of its low glycemic index (which means it does not cause a spike in your blood sugar levels like honey or sugar might.) Unfortunately, agave is a processed food, and it has a higher fructose level than HFCS (57% to 90%). It does have a low glycemic number, but its use can actually create insulin resistance, which can lead to Type II diabetes over time.

Artificial sweeteners are also on my “NO” list. Beware of the phrases “Sugar-Free” or “No Sugar Added” (commonly seen in baked goods, like pies). This is code that the product is sweetened artificially with products like Sweet ‘n Low (saccharin), Splenda (sucralose), aspartame, etc.). Though you will hear much controversy regarding these products the studies on the ‘positive’ side most likely will be funded by the industry that manufactures the artificial sweetener.  Several interesting studies have shown that artificial sweeteners are counter-productive for weight loss because they actually trigger the desire for sweets — without satisfying it.  That’s the last thing you need!

Makeup of Sugar

The newest studies on regular sugar show that it’s fructose that is the biggest problem. Table sugar (sucrose) is made up of 2 sugars called glucose and fructose in roughly equal parts. Honey is 70% fructose and though it has some healthful properties it should be avoided when on a Candida diet and used in moderation for most people.

If you get most of your sugar from natural sources like fruits and vegetables you are going to be okay, especially if you take a quality probiotic supplement because the sugar from these foods won’t interfere with the action of the probiotic. If you want sweetener in your coffee, tea or lemonade then there are some much healthier choices than those on the ‘no’ list above.

Acceptable Sweeteners on the Candida Diet

Sugar Alcohols

Xylitol and Erythritol are from an interesting family of sweeteners called ‘sugar alcohols’. The body processes them in a completely different way than it does sugar. In fact, the body doesn’t really see them as sugars and mostly won’t digest them. In large quantities, they can cause diarrhea and/or gas but in small quantities they can make a nice sugar substitute, with the side benefit that they don’t promote tooth decay. In fact, Xylitol is antibacterial and anti-fungal.

There are many different sugar alcohols but Erythritol and Xylitol are my first choice. The others you see (all ending in -itol) are cheaper to make: forms like sorbitol, mannitol, etc. Erythritol and Xylitol (choose sources made from birch instead of corn) can be found in your health food store or online and is close to being as sweet as sugar.

I recommend Xyla brand because it’s made from the purest North American Birch. and non-GMO. I toured their plant in Broomfield, CO and was extremely impressed with the integrity of the company. It was really interesting to see the machines cranking out their tasty little mints and candy. It smelled heavenly in that warehouse!  

*Important note: Sugar alcohols are NOT safe for animals.

SteviaSweeteners to Avoid & To Use on Candida Diet | Stevia | Natural Health Answers

One last and probably the best natural sweetener to use is Stevia. This plant-based sweetener is available at your health food store or online. This is a very good sweetener but it does have a bit of an aftertaste that some don’t like. It will depend on the brand you buy just how much or little of an aftertaste there is. The more pure the processing of the plant (using just the leaves and not stems for instance) the better it will taste. I use SweetLeaf Stevia because to me it has no bitter aftertaste.

The food industries are starting to patent various forms of Stevia which are reduced to just the sweetest compound chemicals of the Stevia plant. Truvia is one you might see; another is PureVia. Although these manufactured sweeteners start with the Stevia plant, they add additional ingredients and processes so they can patent their products. I recommend you avoid these and stick with the natural forms of Stevia.  
 

 

Here’s a handy chart to use for Stevia to Sugar conversions in your recipes:

 

Stevia Conversion Chart | Candida Diet | Natural Health Answers

 

Looking for a sweet treat that’s Candida Diet approved? Check out my delicious Coconut Cupcakes recipe which uses only a candida diet approved sweeteners.

If you have insulin issues, you should avoid sweeteners altogether, including Stevia, as they all can decrease your sensitivity to insulin (insulin resistance).

I hope this has helped you have at least a fairly sweet life despite having to fight off Candida overgrowth. Don’t be discouraged: the good news is that as you get the Candida under control, your craving for sweets will become much less. Hang in there, steady and focused wins the race.

Keep taking your preventative supplements and eating the recommended foods and stay ahead of the yeast’s attempts to come back. 

 

 

Reader Feedback:  Have you tried Xylitol, Erythritol or Stevia yet?   If so, how did you like them?

 

 

Dairy-Free Ranch Dressing

Dairy-free Ranch Dressing Recipe | Candida Diet Recipes | Natural Health Answers

 

This dairy-free ranch dressing is the bomb dot com!

 

I recently found this recipe from Ashley over at Blissful Basil and wanted to try it ASAP.  I didn’t have the fresh ingredients that she had listed for the recipe but my creamy ranch craving took over and I dove in any way.  

 

I raided my herb cabinet and scanned for the closest ingredients to the original recipe. Boom. Nailed it.   

 

Of course, if you have all the fresh ingredients please create your masterpiece from Ashley’s original recipe. You can mix and match and make this recipe your own with tweaks to your taste buds liking.

 

Even my hubby offered the “this is really good” and “what did you say was in this?”  comments while inhaling the tangy creaminess on a blue corn chip.  He’s not a fan of coconut and is a dairy fan so I thought this was a bit of a coup for my kitchen skills.

 

I made this again today and forgot the nutritional yeast that I had added on my first batch and I noticed that I liked it a bit better with the nutritional yeast added.  Nutritional yeast is a seasoning that does not contain yeast and does not contribute to Candida overgrowth.  If you haven’t tried it yet, it has a “cheese-like” flavor although I really don’t think it tastes that “cheesy” to me.  

 

Although nutritional yeast does not contribute to Candida overgrowth it’s important to be aware that some will be sensitive to it while dealing with a Candida imbalance. When trying a new food on the Candida diet it’s best to start with a small amount to see if you react in any way to the food.   

 

Some of the things to watch out for are fatigue, racing heart, brain fog, headaches, stomach upset, diarrhea, gas, etc. after eating a new food which will alert you to a sensitivity.  Also, you may not feel the effects of the food for up to three days later!  So only introduce one new food at a time so you will know exactly which food is causing the symptoms.  It’s best to leave out any foods that cause any problems until further along in your healing.

 

So with all of that being said, I hope you enjoy this recipe, with or without the nutritional yeast!  

 
Reader Feedback: Are you a ranch dressing fan?  Have you been missing the creaminess from dairy on the Candida diet?  Let me know if this gives you hope! 😉

 

Dairy-Free Ranch Dressing
Makes 2 cups
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Prep Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
Prep Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 can full-fat coconut milk, refrigerated overnight (do not use light coconut milk)
  2. 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  3. 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  4. 2 teaspoons onion powder
  5. 2 teaspoons dried parsley
  6. 2 teaspoons dried basil
  7. 1-1/2 teaspoons dried dill
  8. 1 teaspoons nutritional yeast (optional)
  9. 1 teaspoon sea salt
  10. black pepper, to taste
Instructions
  1. Open the can of coconut milk and scoop out the coconut cream of the top of the can and add to a large bowl or a magic bullet or nutribullet cup. Leave the coconut water in the can.
  2. Add 4 tablespoons of the coconut water into the coconut cream in your bowl or cup (whisk until smooth if using a bowl). Keep the leftover coconut water in case you need an extra tablespoon or two after refrigerating your dressing depending on how thick you like it.
  3. Add in the rest of the ingredients. Stir or blend to combine.
  4. Refrigerate dressing for at least 30 minutes to let the flavors meld together.
Notes
  1. Enjoy the dressing over your favorite salad, use as a dip for your favorite veggies or use it in a wrap or on a sandwich (with grain-free bread of course!).
Adapted from Blissful Basil
Adapted from Blissful Basil
Natural Health Answers http://www.naturalhealthanswers.com/
 Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. Natural Health Answers only joins affiliate programs for products that Paige believes in and sincerely endorses for quality and efficacy.

 

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