Many recovering alcoholics crave sweets. For one, sweets can be thought of as a reward. You got sober and you deserve a piece of chocolate cake from the bakery. The problem is sweets, like alcohol, are addictive. The more you eat, the more you crave. Sweets are dolled up sugar. Sugar stimulates the release of dopamine, a neurotransmitter in the brain that produces good sensations.
Too many sweets cause a number of conditions in your body that aren’t good for you. Sugar is bad for your teeth, it can cause metabolic syndrome, obesity, cardiovascular disease, fatty liver disease, and type II diabetes. Sugar may increase your risks for esophageal, colon, small intestine and breast cancers.
Though you don’t get the same high, craving sweets can be a substitute for alcohol. Think of it as the mind transferring one addiction for another. It is a good idea to be curious about the underlying cause of your alcoholism and subsequent sugar cravings. Perhaps there’s something you unconsciously are trying to avoid, some feeling that’s making you depressed. Stuffing down feelings with sugar may work temporarily, but too much stuffing can backfire and depression can become chronic.
Sometimes we can’t figure the whys and why nots of life on our own. That’s when working with a fully credentialed therapist is a good idea. You might have been stuffing your feelings down for a long, long time, and unconsciously had a good reason to do so. Having a therapist can provide a safe environment in which to begin uncovering the edges of emotional pain. Therapists are trained to help you process and learn to tolerate pain. Through time, and your own important willingness to understand what happened to you, like child abuse, the horrors you faced in war, a car accident, you can grow, change, and move towards a happy, fulfilled life.
You can break your sugar cravings the same way you learned to stay sober—one day at a time. Walk past the vending machine at work. Educate yourself about the dangers of high fructose corn syrup. Bring healthy snacks with you to school or work. If you are retired or are at home during the day, throw away your stash of sweets. At the grocery store don’t be conned by fat-free or low sugar advertising on packages. Almonds, walnuts and sunflower seeds can provide crunch and good taste at the same time. Fruits and vegetables can easily be prepared for snacks, too.
Treatment can be a transformative process when you find a program that works for you as well as with you. At Infinity Treatment Centers, lasting recovery is attainable at last. Our luxury residences offer the highest privacy and comfort while our clinical program provides the personalized approach necessary for infinite change. Call us today for information: (855) 544-0611