· By PYM STORE
Best Supplements to Stop Sugar Cravings and Boost Your Mood
Have you ever found yourself reaching for a sugary snack when you’re feeling down, stressed or anxious? You’re not alone. Despite what diet culture will have you believe, it’s not because of a lack of willpower.
Sugar cravings are often a sign you're lacking certain nutrients. Plus, thanks to modern-day advertising, many of us have been conditioned to turn to sweets as a form of comfort. On top of that, our brains are actually wired to seek out sugar as a survival mechanism in times of stress!
Sugar is known to have a negative impact on our mood, but don’t worry, you don’t have to give it up completely! There are ways we can still occasionally indulge without sacrificing our physical and mental health.
Read on to learn the science behind what causes sugar cravings, and how to stop craving sugar without cutting it out completely.
Why do we crave sugar?
In prehistoric times, our ancestors relied on high-energy foods like fruit and honey to survive and thrive. Our bodies are still wired to seek out these foods during times of scarcity and stress because they provide a quick source of energy.
This is why you’re more likely to binge on high-sugar, high-carbohydrate foods when you’re feeling down or anxious, when you skip meals, or a few hours after having caffeine. All of these put your body in a state of scarcity and stress, so naturally it will seek a quick source of energy.
In today’s modern world, there are endless options of high-sugar, high-carb foods. The worst part is, they’ve been engineered to make you crave them even more (so you keep buying them!). Added sugar is hiding in at least 74% of packaged foods. Even in foods advertised as healthy, like whole-grain bread, yogurt, protein bars and oatmeal.
The added sugar stimulates your brain to create dopamine, a brain chemical which gives us a temporary feeling of pleasure and satisfaction, and then a crash. Then, depression and anxiety set in–it’s a vicious cycle.
Lastly, scientists believe that certain vitamin and mineral deficiencies can cause sugar cravings. We’ll get into that later on!
Sugar Cravings and Low Serotonin
Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that plays a vital role in regulating mood, appetite, and sleep, among other things. When serotonin levels are low, we may experience symptoms of depression, anxiety and other mood disorders.
Studies have shown that consuming sugar can temporarily boost levels of serotonin, leading to feelings of pleasure and satisfaction. As a result, people who are struggling with low serotonin may be more likely to turn to sugary foods as a way of self-medicating.
However, this can create a vicious cycle where sugar intake disrupts our serotonin levels, leading to more cravings and a greater reliance on sugar to feel good.
How sugar impacts anxiety and depression
It may feel good in the moment to eat that sleeve of Oreos (no shame, we’ve all done it) but the cycle of consuming sugar to manage your emotions may only make your feelings of sadness, fatigue, or hopelessness worse.
Firstly, the high amounts of added sugar in processed foods lead to a rapid blood sugar spike, followed by a sudden crash. This can cause feelings of fatigue, irritability, and mood swings that can worsen existing symptoms of depression and anxiety.
Overconsumption of sugar triggers imbalances in certain brain chemicals. These imbalances can lead to depression and may even increase the long-term risk of developing a mental health disorder in some people.
Best supplements to stop sugar cravings
As mentioned before, certain vitamin and mineral deficiencies are believed to cause sugar cravings. Rather than depriving yourself of sugar completely, try these top vitamins and minerals to supplement to reduce sugar cravings:
Magnesium is responsible for regulating blood sugar levels and dopamine. Therefore, low levels of magnesium can cause sugar cravings, especially for chocolate which contains magnesium. Your brain wants that dopamine boost and sugar for energy. It’s estimated that 50% of people have magnesium deficiency, so magnesium is a great supplement for sugar cravings and overall health!
Our Mood Magnesium was created with the three types of magnesium that are most easily absorbed by the body, and most proven to reduce stress and improve sleep.
Methylated B Complex
B complex vitamins, a group of eight B vitamins that are essential for our energy and metabolism, also help curb sugar cravings. B vitamins help us efficiently process food, reducing the need for that quick hit of sugar for energy. B vitamins are also crucial for regulating the nervous system. A calm nervous system is one that is not in “fight or flight” mode, meaning your body and mind are relaxed and not worried about finding sugar for survival.
Our Mood B Complete is formulated with methylated B vitamins to boost absorption for maximum energy and metabolism support.
Omega-3 Essential Fatty Acids
Omega-3 essential fatty acids, which usually come in the form of fish oil supplements, are great for reducing sugar cravings! A study found that the essential fatty acid DHA can reverse the damage done to genes from the over consumption of high-fructose corn syrup.
The new research demonstrated that consuming a lot of sugar in the diet can actually change the expression of hundreds of genes, including genes that may lead to a greater predisposition toward metabolic diseases such as diabetes, and brain disorders such as ADHD and Alzheimer’s disease.
Excitingly, the research showed that DHA largely reversed the fructose-induced changes in the brain!
Our Mood Omegas were formulated with sustainably sourced deep sea cold water fish from Chile and are citrus flavored so there’s no aftertaste!
Our gut microbiome is made up of trillions of bacteria. There are “good bacteria” and “bad bacteria”. The “bad bacteria” cause sugar cravings because they feed off of the sugar. When we feed our gut with prebiotics and probiotics, this helps feed the “good bacteria”. The “good bacteria” helps strengthen our immune system, regulate our blood sugar, calm our nervous system…and curb sugar cravings!
Our Mood Biotics is a blend of 6 research-backed strains of prebiotics and probiotics that feed your good bacteria, as well as reduce stress and anxiousness.
Psst, Subscribe and Save: You can get all 4 of these supplements in our Total Reset Kit and save $50, plus an additional 40% off on your first order!
Sugar-free ways to cope with stress & anxiety and increase serotonin naturally
It's ok to indulge in a treat every now and then, but we don't want to rely on sugar to manage our stress. Try these tips:
- Get direct sunlight exposure 15-20 min a day. Sunlight naturally raises serotonin levels
- Daily exercise helps raise endorphins and other feel-good neurochemicals. Movement also helps keep blood sugar levels in check!
- Spend time with loved ones; in-person socializing helps raise oxytocin and serotonin levels
- Try Mood Chews! Mood Chews are sugar-free gummies infused with amino acids GABA and L-Theanine, which help you to naturally boost serotonin levels and feel calm, yet alert
Always consult with a doctor if you are experiencing symptoms of chronic stress, depression, anxiety, or any other mood disorders. Consult with your doctor before adding new supplements to your routine. The products mentioned in this article are not intended to diagnose or treat any condition.