5 signs you didn’t really quit sugar

By Jordanna Levin |

Keys2words – 5 signs you didn't really quit sugar

Have you ever tried quitting sugar, but the sweet stuff keeps sucking you back in?

If you didn’t do it with the Keys2words:, there’s a chance that you didn’t quit sugar the right way. That’s not your fault – there’s a lot of confusion about sugar out there!

Want to give quitting sugar another shot? Avoid these five mistakes and you’ll break your addiction in no time!

 1. You substitute sugar with, er, sugar.

Cutting out refined white sugar is a step in the right direction. But immediately replacing it with substitutes that are still full of addictive fructose will not help you break your fructose addiction.

  • Dates contain around 30 per cent fructose.
  • Coconut sugar/nectar contains 38 to 48 per cent fructose.
  • Honey and maple syrup contain around 40 per cent fructose.
  • Agave syrup can contain up to 90 per cent fructose.

Once you’ve beat the addiction, you’re free to experiment and see how your body deals with small amounts of sweeteners.

We prefer fructose-free rice malt syrup and stevia, but otherwise we’re happy with our daily servings of fruit to get a sweet hit.

2. You believe the packaging when it says sugarfree.

Refer to the point above!

Sugar has many aliases and is often hidden in ingredients lists under a different name (see 70 of them here).

Food manufacturers can slap a “no added sugar” label on their products but still include honey, maple syrup, fruit concentrate and fruit puree.

To avoid hidden “healthy” sugars, we tend to stick to plain, unpackaged food with no bells and whistles. And, if you have to buy packaged food, reading the backs of labels (4g of sugar = one teaspoon) is a good start.

3. You think juice is a healthy option.

Do you order a green juice when you go out for breakfast? You might not be getting the healthy option.

Millilitre for millilitre, apple juice can contain as much sugar as a can of Coca-Cola, especially if it’s sweetened with more sugar. Sure, apple juice has more nutrients than Coke, but drinking that much sugar in one go can put strain on your liver to process the fructose. Not to mention that it will probably undo your sugar-quitting efforts!

4. You opt for artificial sweeteners.

No, artificial sweeteners are not technically sugar… but they still tickle your sweet taste buds. And not only do they derail your sugar-quitting, but they may also come with a cachet of unsavoury side effects.

There is some evidence that , , many people have trouble digesting them (leading to diarrhoea and gas). Not fun!

5. You go cold turkey, lapse within a few days and then throw in the towel.

There’s a reason our program and books have helped more than a million people kick the habit. Our approach gently eases you into quitting sugar, with detoxing and comforting recipes, so you can find the level of sugar consumption that’s right for you (without feeling totally addicted to the stuff!).

And, hey, falling off the wagon happens – but when you know how to eat real food, it’s easy to get back on!

We originally published this article in May 2014. We updated it in March 2017.

Please be respectful of other participants in the conversation. We'd love you to keep your comments respectful, friendly and relevant. Differences of opinion are welcome, but trolling and abuse of other commentators and the IQS editorial team is not and will result in blacklisting.

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