My sugar detox story actually starts back in 2012, before I’d even considered detoxing from sugar in the first place.
It was the year my dad was diagnosed with heart disease and that diagnosis launched me into the world of plant-based eating. It was a way of supporting him (he was hoping it would help him avoid heart surgery) and acknowledging that, genetically, I was at risk for developing heart disease and could be at risk myself for health complications down the road.
Although it was a struggle at first, I fell in love with this new way of eating.
However, after several years after cleaning up my diet and going plant-based, I still was experiencing some subtle health issues that were annoying. (Think gas and bloating. Gross!) And I also often felt tired and run down. Because I was eating an extremely healthy diet, I didn’t believe I should be experiencing these kinds of symptoms.
Determined to nip it in the bud, I spent time researching and praying about what it could be, until I became convinced I had a systemic yeast infection (a.k.a. candida overgrowth) in my gut.
It’s not uncommon because we all have a little yeast in our system, but the problem is when it gets out of control. There are several factors that can contribute to a candida overgrowth, but I suspected mine stemmed from a course of antibiotics I needed for a bronchitis infection a couple years earlier.
Because antibiotics not only wipe out the bad bacteria (yeah!), but they take out the good bacteria too (boo!). And that plus eating sugar (yeast’s favorite food) plus other factors, like stress, are the perfect environment for yeast to party hard in your body, but give you a yeast-induced “hangover” which can include: fatigue, brain fog, anxiety, inflammation, seasonal allergies, digestive issues, itching “down there,” and, yep, even sugar cravings.
If you want to read more about candida overgrowth, check out the Candida Diet which was my number one resource for figuring out how to detox from sugar.
Sooo… I spent six months doing research, planning and praying before I finally had worked up the courage to detox from sugar. For me, I was certain I needed to do this for three months, but I still struggled with the idea of actually doing it.
I wasn’t sure if I would be successful. I was worried that it would be too hard and stressful to cook one way for myself and another for my family. I wondered if cutting myself off from all the desserts and foods I enjoyed would be worth it.
But I did it and it was worth all the planning and saying no to foods I used to enjoy! It took care of every single symptom that had been plaguing me to such an extent that I knew I never wanted to go back to freely eating added sugars ever again.
The very first time I ate something with added sugars in it after my detox was complete confirmed it…I felt jittery, icky and anxious. As someone who struggles with anxiety, the last thing I wanted was to add to the struggle.
There was something else this sugar detox and new way of life took care of as well but I didn’t realize until the next spring.
Previously, I struggled with seasonal allergies six months of the year. For me, that meant constantly feeling run down and like I was coming down with a cold, so I had to take allergy medication most of the time to relieve those symptoms.
By detoxing from sugar and maintaining a diet that was mostly free of added sugars from that point on, by the time allergy season rolled around the next spring, I discovered I barely needed allergy medication any more!
As someone who uses medicine very conservatively and takes it only as a last resort, this was exciting to me. I found I only needed it when everything pollinates at the beginning of spring and when ragweed rears its ugly head in August.
And that’s it in a nutshell. Since then, I’ve never looked back and am completely obsessed with eating a diet that’s virtually free of added sugars. (Sure I have a little sugar once and awhile, but mostly I choose not to eat because I feel amazing with it!)
If any part of my story resonates with you and you suspect a diet containing added sugars is at the root of what’s holding you back from a life of better health, then let’s chat!
Click the button below to schedule a free 20-minute call with me so we can discuss what you’re experiencing and if a sugar detox is right for you.
Or, if you already know you want to detox from sugar, I’ve created a 28 Day Sugar Detox Program to help you with that. It gives you everything you need to set you up to do this successfully, including recipes, meal plans, tip sheets and coaching support. Click here to learn more.