The Truth About Sugar and Yo-Yo Dieting

* by Sandra Roycroft-Davis

Sugar! Anyone who’s ever tried to lose weight knows that sugar is the enemy – but isn’t it the hardest thing to cut down or give up?  So many people repeatedly try and fail.

Most people go through horrific cravings, binges and mood swings when they try to cut down but this reaction should be no surprise when you learn that sugar is as addictive as cocaine. People also experience headaches and even get the shakes. This is all because of the effect sugar has on the brain.Most people go through horrific cravings, binges and mood swings when they try to cut down but this reaction should be no surprise when you learn that sugar is as addictive as cocaine.  People also experience headaches and even get the shakes.  This is all because of the effect sugar has on the brain.

If this is you, then there is exciting news because there is a way to end the hold sugar has over you without having any of the awful withdrawal symptoms. Firstly though, I think it’s crucial to understand a little bit about the impact sugar has on your brain and your emotions because knowledge means empowerment and empowerment is one of the keys to freedom!

Most people try to give up sugar because they want to lose weight.  They invariably go on a diet and start depriving themselves of their pleasures and that’s when a whole series of unfortunate events begin to take place because there’s an emotional aspect to food that so many people don’t even think about – and this sabotages their efforts.

A survey of 1,000 people in America found 31 per cent thought lack of exercise was the biggest barrier to weight loss, 26 per cent said it was what they eat and 12 per cent said losing weight took up too much time. Only 1 in 10 thought emotions and habits were a factor.

This explains a lot – because to lose weight and keep it off long term we need to understand WHY we eat not just focus on WHAT we eat.

From a very young age, most of us become emotionally attached to sweet stuff.  Parents use chocolate and sweet treats as a reward for being good or to help make us feel good if we’re upset or hurt.  Birthday parties generally revolve around cake and sweet treats, too!

All these things keep reinforcing the association the brain has made: food / sweet treats / chocolate = pleasure.

We become conditioned to use food and sweet treats not only for nourishment and nutrition but for comfort and the reward and pleasure it gives. This all creates powerful connections that can last a lifetime.

Whenever the brain experiences pleasure it releases a neurotransmitter called dopamine.  So when you experience pleasure for whatever reason, this process is activated – and the more you get the more you want.  Evidence proves that sugar also kicks off this process, becoming our reward or feel-good drug of choice.

Losing weight is a miserable experience and we are creatures of pleasure so that’s why so many people are unsuccessful. However, it’s not all bad because once we’re aware of this happening then we can deal with it.

Here is a link to my free ebook which explains more about the effects sugar has and how you can end the misery…

* Sandra Roycroft-Davis is a Founder of ThinkingSlimmer.com

Why snoring can put your health at risk

Snoring InfographicSnoring is a very common problem in the UK and it has been recognised as a social problem for many of years; the actual problems of which Snorers complain centre around disturbing others ‘sleep, poor sleep quality, lethargy and sore throat. Some of the predisposing factors are well-known and include obesity, alcohol and sleeping position. From a English suburban community 1,075 men and women were invited to provide information about their snoring in a ‘snore survey’ questionnaire carried out in 2004 by Sunderland Royal Hospital. From the results it was estimated that 43.75% of the middle aged (30 – 69 years) UK population snore and 41.5% of the UK adult population snore. In another survey by Tom Ford in Detroit, snorers were found to have significantly greater intima-media thickness, thought to be a precursor to atherosclerosis, thickening of the arteries, which can lead to brain haemorrhages, heart attacks and strokes.

It’s not laughing matter

American researchers have found that snoring can lead to a deterioration of your sleep quality leaving you exhausted the next day and increasing the risk of stroke. According to the American Heart Association the evidence is very strong for the relationship between sleep apnea and hypertension and cardiovascular disease.

A quarter of British couples say snoring is ruining their sex lives and it’s cited as the third most common reason for divorce after financial problems and adultery. With 38% of couples saying that their partner’s sleep disorder has caused problems in their relationship it’s many times the reason couples seek relationship counselling.

Understanding Snoring

To understand the problem it’s important to know what snoring actually is. Expert snoring advisor, Richard Tyrell of Snorewizard explains that snoring is the production of sound from the upper aerodigestive tract during sleep. ‘When we sleep, the airways in the head and neck relax and narrow. The resulting restriction in the size of the air passages affects our breathing rate and changes the air pressure, which results in vibrations of soft tissue. The nasal passages, soft palate, tongue, tonsils and uvula have all been found to play a part in creating the sound we call snoring. Evidence suggests that snoring will get worse over time if left untreated as it can cause irreparable damage blood vessels supplying the muscles in the throat.’

Risk factors

Obesity – Extra weight is a risk factor for snoring, although those of us at a healthy weight aren’t immune. Extra weight around the neck can exacerbate the narrowing of the air passages that occurs when we sleep.

Alcohol/tranquilisers – Alcohol is a depressant, meaning it causes the body’s systems to slow down and relax. It causes the muscles involved in snoring to relax more than usual when you sleep, further narrowing the airways and increasing the chances of snoring.

Age – We snore more as we get older. This is perhaps due to a decrease in muscle tone of the soft tissue involved in snoring. Middle-aged men have been found to be the biggest snorers. 60% of men and 40% of women over the age of 60 have been found to snore.

Smoking – Smoking has been found to be a major contributing factor when it comes to snoring, even amongst ex-smokers. Passive smoking could also be linked to snoring. Smoke irritates the lining of the nasal cavity and throat, which leads to swelling, catarrh and therefore, narrowed airways, much the same as when you have a cold.

Medication – Some medications like sedatives or anti-depressants which cause you to relax more than usual have been found to increase the likelihood of snoring.

Nasal or sinus problems – Some of these issues can cause your airways to narrow more than usual.

Eating a large meal or eating near bedtime – Both of these things can cause you to relax more than usual or, with a full stomach you can affect how open your airways are.

What can you do?

Exercise and weight loss are a good start point; sleeping on your side will take pressure off your throat and clearing your nasal passages before bed will minimise obstruction of your air passages. Always seek expert medical advice and try to find out more about some alternative devices available that can help you get a better night’s sleep.

Do you snore?

How do you cope with you snoring partner?

*Post brought to you by Snorewizard.