Letting Go of Sugar With Dr. Mark Hyman
By Kristin Meekhof on February 25, 2014
If your New Year’s Resolution goals failed or you are looking for a healthy and simple way to approach meals, this new book, The Blood Sugar Solution 10- Day Detox Diet by Dr. Mark Hyman is your answer. This book provides a comprehensive blueprint for integrating pracitical tips to help you live a healthy life. The recipes are delicious and easy to follow. Buying the book just for the recipes is well worth your purchase.
At first glance, I seem an unlikely candidate for a health fix detox program. In an average week, I run four days a week; it’s routine for me to stop at the gym before work or run outside with my running group after work. Thin and fit, I don’t worry about my weight but recent blood work showed that despite my high level of fitness, my blood sugar levels are still too high. Like most Americans, I consume too much sugar, bread, and caffeine. Mini- chocolate bars, hot cocoa packets, peanut butter crackers, organic dark chocolate chips are in my cupboards, freezer, car console, desk, and purse. I find myself justifying my sugar and bread consumption because I run. You know that person running in deep snow, when it is ten degrees outside? That is sugar addicted me.
At the onset of Dr. Mark Hyman’s new 10-day detox program, I admit, I was second guessing my commitment to give up my chocolate bars stashed away in my desk drawer and that post run hot cocoa. I scheduled the detox to begin on a week that didn’t have any scheduled dinner parties. I announced to a few friends that I was “breaking up with sugar for 10 days”, and the looks I got ranged from horror to genuine care and concern. Clearly, they knew, for me, that this wouldn’t be an easy task. “Who in the industry is doing this to you?” I explained, “No one. I need to eat better.” Another friend, with a glass of wine in her hand, put her arm on my shoulder and said, “You are about to turn forty and you need to enjoy life.”
For many Americans enjoying life equates to indulging in whatever food is easiest to obtain. Unfortunately, this means we are getting our meals out of a paper bag passed through a drive-thru window or eating mindlessly out of a cardboard box.
Dr. Hyman argues that we should hold the big food industry accountable for their conscious and negligent behavior. In his new book, he writes, “We live in a toxic food landscape with tantalizing, addictive choices everywhere we go. The food industry justifies its production of toxic, addictive food by saying, ‘We are just producing what our customers want.’” Major food corporations and fast food restaurants would rather hide behind this argument than admit that they continue to play a major role in starting Americans on a lifelong path of poor nutrition. Ultimately, the path for most Americans leads to obesity and diabetes. Dr. Hyman calls this national health crisis ‘diabesity’.
Even if you are not experiencing ‘diabesity’, this detox plan can help you end your tight grip on sugar. Dr. Hyman also believes that our relationship to food is directly connected to how we think. He writes in 10- Day Detox Diet, “The biggest challenge you’re facing here is not your waistline or your weight. It’s not your belly. It’s your brain. Changing the way you think about food so you get your mind working with your body, not against it, is critical to weight loss and healing.”
One of the ways that we can become aware of our thinking is through journaling. Part of Dr. Hyman’s 10-Day Detox Diet includes keeping a journal. He offers some suggestions about what to write about each day. There is also an online community to provide you with support.
I will share this with you about my experience (Full Disclosure- I did not use any of the supplements recommended). On day three of the detox, I felt the positive effects of a healthy diet. I embraced it now that I got through the first two days and my break up with sugar no longer seemed like a long haul. I don’t own a scale, but I felt lightweight. No cravings. My head was clear; no clutter; no anxiety despite the difficult phone call the night before. Now, I notice that my running is stronger and I’m sleeping through the night.
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