Making Better Sugar Choices

Categories: Health, Weight Loss, Corporate Wellness

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You’re definitely not alone when it comes to sugar addiction - that’s because as humans, we were born to crave the sweet sensation! Our sweet tooth started before we were even born. Sweet amniotic fluid surrounded us as we grew inside of our mother’s stomach. Then as infants, we grew up on the sugary taste of breast milk and/or formula. In reality, there should be no surprise that we like our sweets1!

Now this begs to question… are we set up to fail? I mean put the fluid and breast milk aside and we still have our candy, bread, pasta, rice and potatoes surrounding us everywhere we go. Not to mention the plethora of sweet beverages like juices, sports drinks, vitamin waters and last but not least, the king of all sugar-sweetened drinks, soda! All of these foods and beverages are not only super high in sugar, but they are also super addictive! Coincidence? I think not!

Ingesting high amounts of sugar has been shown to lead to insulin resistance, or poor sugar regulation within the body! This insulin resistance makes us groggy because the foods we are ingesting aren’t being turned into usable energy; but instead, it gets turned into bad cholesterol (LDL) and fat, all while putting extra stress on the liver. Insulin resistance is the single-most leading factor in causing heart disease, stroke, dementia, cancer and/or a rapid rate in premature aging and weight gain2,3,4,5,6,7. Ingesting an overabundance of sugar can actually decrease the functioning of your immune system, increase your risk of cardiovascular disease and increase your chances of getting a degenerative disease as well!


Sugar has 144 different names –yes, 144! I couldn’t even tell you all of the names, and I bet you wouldn’t want to read them all anyway! The point is, if you start eating foods without a label, such as whole food sources, you aren’t going to have to worry about it. If you’re someone who needs to eat foods that has labels on them, look in the ingredients for words that end in “ose.” Other common undercover names for sugar include, but are not limited to, mannitol, sorghum syrup, fruit juice concentrate, high fructose corn syrup, barley malt and sorbitol.

Ingredients are listed by the amount in the food source. So if sugar if listed in any of the top three ingredients, PUT IT DOWN! Stop adding sugar to drinks, food products and recipes, but instead make the better choice - start using pure stevia or xylitol. Better yet, eliminate the sweetness all together by using cinnamon or nutmeg.

If you’re hooked on soft drinks, replace them with sparkling water and lemon slices. Craving caffeine? Have some black/green tea or black coffee instead! Making the better choice works, but constantly stressing over a “diet” doesn’t!


Carbohydrates use the least amount of steps in order to process them into energy. This means that your body loves to consume carbs due to the fact that you are following the “path of least resistance.” If you’re constantly consuming refined carbohydrates and sugar, your body will naturally rely on sugar for energy.

This is a mistake I made for a very long time, until I understood this self-sabotage and made the switch to foods that contain high amounts of dietary fiber (vegetables), healthy fats (dark chocolate, coconut butter & grass-fed butter) and small amounts of protein (grass-fed meats & wild-caught fish)! This has shifted my metabolism, because now I use fat for energy (including my own body fat), resulting in less hunger, more energy and not having to rely on sugar to plow through my day!


Try this out because if you don’t, in a week, a month, or a year, you will wish you had!


Jack T Kunkel, MS is author of the book, “It’s Fat Loss, Not Weight Loss,” a corporate motivational speaker and President of the wellness company Jack Kunkel’s Revolutionary Wellness.

Ready to make lifestyle changes that will improve your health long-term? With the help of this all-encompassing guide to permanent fat loss, you can become the best you possible!



1. Sigman-Grant M, and Morita J.  Defining and interpreting intakes of sugars.  Am J Clin Nutr.  2003:78:815S-26S.

2.Aggarwal, B. B., Krishnan, S., Guha, S. Inflammation, Lifestyle and Chronic Disease: The Silent Link. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press. 2012.

3. Ebbeling CB, Swain JF, Fledman HA, Wong WW, Haohey DL, Lago-Garcia E, Ludwig DS. Effects of Dietary Composition on Energy Expenditure During Weight-Loss Maintenance. JAMA, June 27, 2012-Vol 307, No.24

4.Gillis L, Gillis A. Nutrient inadequacy in obese and non-obese youth. Can J Diet Prac Res. 2005 Winter;66(4):2270-78.

5.Gearhardt AN, Corbin WR, Brownell KD. Primarily validation of the yellow food addiction scale. Appetite. 2009;52(2):430-36.

6. Gearhardt AN, Corbin WR, Brownell KD. Food addiction, and examination of the diagnostic criteria for dependence. J Addit Med.2009;3:1-7. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21768996

7. Volkow, ND Wang GJ, Fowler JS, Logan J, Jayne M, Franceschi D, Wong C, Gatley SJ, Gifford AN, Ding YS, Pappas N. “Nonhedonic” food motivation in the humans involves dopamine in the dorsal striatum and methylphendate amplifies this effect. Synapse. 2002;44(3):175-80. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11954049

8. .  Lacasse M.  Sugar’s effect on your health.  Healing daily. 2007 Available at website:     http://www.healingdaily.com/detoxification-diet/sugar.htm


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