Did you know it takes 28 days to detox from an addictive substance? Refined carbohydrates such as white flour and white sugar, are no exception. If it seems like you can never get enough bread, crackers or cookies, here is an easy 28-day plan will help you get over your carb addiction for good.
Ever wonder why white carbs are so addictive? It actually has to do with chemicals that travel from the stomach to the part of the brain where you produce dopamine, a hormone and neurotransmitter that affects the brain’s pleasure and reward centers. When these areas of the brain are stimulated, you’ll keep on wanting more of the addictive substance, whether it’s alcohol, drugs or carbs.
Too many refined carbs – baked goods, french fries or processed snack foods like chips and pretzels – are simply toxic for your body. They’re often responsible for visceral or omentum fat, the dangerous fat you can carry around your middle that actually inhibits your body’s ability to make insulin, which makes you more prone to diabetes. Unrefined or white carbs also increase your risk for cardiovascular disease and even cancer.
This simple 28-day plan can help you break free of carb addiction.
Week 1: Detox With Fats
Start kicking the habit by booting all the unrefined carbs out of your kitchen. To get through the symptoms of withdrawal, fill up on healthy fats and don’t worry about your calorie intake. The point of this first week is to get off simple carbs. Healthy fats are satiating, which will help diminish hunger pangs and keep you from overeating. Healthy fats are olive oil, coconut oil, canola oil, nuts like walnuts, almonds and pistachios, organic peanut or almond butter, avocado, flax and salmon.
In addition, for this week, none of your food servings should have more than 4 grams of sugar.
Week 2: Turn White Rice and Grains Into Brown Rice and Whole Grains
Whole grains keep you full longer, stabilize blood sugar, and are loaded with fiber, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Also, a diet rich in whole grains has been tied to lower rates of chronic disease such as diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and obesity. So get these foods into your cupboard: brown carbs such as:
- Oatmeal (steel cut is best)
- Whole grain bread (whole grain rather than whole wheat)
- Brown rice
- Whole grain pasta
- Whole grain crackers and cereals
- Week 3: Hand to Mouth
- At this point you’ve been filling up on healthy fats and whole grains. Now you need to focus on portion control. Forget about scales and measuring cups. You can use your hands to measure the right portion size:
- Carbs = Fist
- A serving of carbs should be about the size of your fist.
- Protein = Palm
- A serving of meat, poultry or fish should be about the size of your palm.
- Fats = Thumb
- A serving of fats should be about the size of your thumb.
- Frutis and Veggies = Handfuls
- For fruits and veggies, grab all you can hold! Veggies are unlimited.
- Always combine your carbs with fats (but no more than a thumb’s worth). This will help you slow sugar absorption and control your weight.
- Week 4. Time to Cheat
- Eating your favorite carb with fiber will also help you better metabolize sugar and keep your weight down. For instance, top your pizza or pasta with a bunch of veggies and only eat 2-3 thin slices max. Dark chocolate is a healthy “cheat” food. Don’t eat more than 1-2 oz. at a time on your cheat day. Have a full fat ice cream rather than a fat free one, which will leave you more satiated. No more than a tennis ball is the cheat portion on that. Another good “cheat” food is a delicious sirloin very lean hamburger with sweet potato fries. You need the Vitamin B-12 and iron that beef provides. Once a week a portion of beef can’t harm you, but organic beef is best to avoid the hormones or antibiotics of traditional beef if possible. Also, don’t eat more than 300-400 calories more than your “diet watch” day, otherwise you will end up gaining which you don’t want to do.
http://www.naturalnutritionadvisor.com/Linda Wolschlager, The Nutrition Advisor LLC/also available: Skype Consults