Fitness & Healthy Lifestyle

The Sugar Free 7 Challenge

Sugar, sugar everywhere & yep it's literally in all things these days.

Over the last year or so increasing exponential levels of attention have begun to be paid to the detrimental health effects of this food stuff but why? And where do we draw the line?

Well this is exactly what Jazz Leaf & I have attempted to answer with this simple challenge, a happy accident that came about following an incredibly interesting exchange on Instagram when I shared a post on natural sweeteners & whether they're actually any better for us than the classic artificial ones. (Find that here). We've fondly titled it 'The Sugar Free 7' because it can literally be that swift, the change you experience when you remove sugars from your diet.

Now to summarise quickly on exactly why you may want to give this a go there are a few main reasons.

So innately we have a couple of forms of metabolism but if it has the choice our body will go for glucose any day of the week because it's quick & easy to break down, it tastes nice, you get the picture. The thing about easily liberated energy is that our body also doesn't like this that much as our blood sugar needs to remain within a tightly controlled range as our cells can only process so much in 1 go. The control for this comes through the triggering of insulin from the pancreas, this zips around & ferries any excess circulating sugar into either fat or muscle cells to be stored.

So that's great but we have some issues here - if we constantly abuse this mechanism it gets tired & our blood sugar rises, that circulating glucose then has the ability to cause damage around the body as it is incredibly inflammatory, & this then consequently results in our cells down regulating their sensitivity to glucose & insulin to protect them from being overrun with that sugar.

A few examples we would then see in someone would be:

  1. Fatigue because although the energy is there they can't get it into those cells.
  2. Sugar cravings because for the same reason above their body can't tell they have ample energy available so it asks for more.
  3. Inflammatory conditions, cardiovascular disease, increased pain, skin issues, the list goes on.
  4. Weight gain because the body will have to do something with some of that circulating sugar so into the back store it goes (AKA our fat cells which will then worsen the whole cycle but that is a story for another day).

Now depending on if this is left unchecked or dealt with someone might progress to pre-diabetes or diabetes, & although this challenge would be useful I would suggest individualised care to be more appropriate where there is an established medical condition/diagnosis. If you would like more information of my clinical services please click here.

But yes to conclude we think we have reached a critical point - obesity & diabetes figures worldwide are continuing to sky rocket, & we now find sugar hidden in places we wouldn't even dream. We entirely understand that everyone is individual however & have tailored our advice accordingly, so even if you just look to this 7 days (or as long as you wish to do it for) as a form of eye opening as to how much sugar you are consuming, or perhaps how much better you may feel if you snipped this down a bit for a while, we do hope you'll join us in our little experiment & share your experiences along the way.

We have included plenty of information, tips, tricks & recipes within the file below but please do join us on our Instagram feeds (Natural Nourishment & Recipes4Health) where we will be posting new bits daily from Monday 25th February & sharing our findings because of course we'll be doing it too!

With healthy wishes,

Phoebe x

Sugar Free 7 Challenge Download