How to Curb Sugar Cravings

Josh Bezoni- How to Curb Sugar Cravings

When sugar cravings hit, they can be nearly impossible to suppress. How many times have you tried to stick to a diet, only to be met with an an insatiable desire for something sweet, and found yourself scarfing down a Reese’s peanut butter cup you found in your child’s Halloween candy while they’re at school? If this sounds like you, you’re not alone.

Why we crave sugar

Depriving yourself of something makes you want it even more; this idea has been proven by scientists, but it’s also common sense. One of the main reasons people become addicted to sugar is because refined sugar depletes the body of chromium, magnesium, zinc, B vitamins, and manganese, leading to increased cravings. Another reason people crave sugar, Dr. Mark Hyman explains, is biochemical in nature. Sugar has an addictive quality; when you consume sugar, it impairs your dopamine receptors, causing you to build up a “tolerance,” to sugar, so to speak, and making you crave it more each time.

Why too much sugar is bad for you

The human body needs sugar to function; it regulates your blood sugar levels and is converted into energy that the body needs to survive. However, too much sugar is a bad thing. Natural sugar, glucose, can be found in many foods, such as fruit, but it is added sugar that you need to look out for, which serves no real purpose other than excess energy, and can be detrimental to your health. In addition to causing cavities and weight gain, a buildup of glucose in the pancreas causes a “sugar rush,” followed by a “sugar crash.” The brain responds to too much glucose by producing the chemical serotonin, which makes you tired, and the pancreas responds by producing insulin. Too much insulin will dull the hunger hormone, leptin, causing you to feel hungry and crave more sugar . Essentially, it tricks your body into thinking it’s hungry even if it’s not.

How to stop craving sugar

Although it can be very difficult to stop craving sugar, it is not impossible. The first thing you can do in transitioning to a low-sugar diet is to substitute other foods to satisfy your cravings. For instance, when you’re craving something sweet, reach for fruit instead, which contains healthy levels of natural glucose and can help combat deficiencies such as carbon, chromium, and sulfur linked with sugar cravings. Next, gradually remove all sugary foods from your house, or (if other household members are not adopting the same diet), make sure they’re stored in a place you will not be tempted to raid during the day.

Curbing your sugar cravings will take some hard work and dedication on your part, but your body will thank you for it, making it all worth it in the end!

You May Be Mislead About Bread

Josh Bezoni- You may be mislead about Bread

Garlic bread. Bread sticks. Ciabatta. Focaccia. Pita bread. Naan. Sourdough. Rye. Brioche. Pizza. Grilled cheese. Bread comes in many delectable forms, but bread is a carb and therefore, we have been led to believe that it’s bad for us- encouraged to avoid the very thing many of us so often crave. However, unless you have a gluten allergy, there’s no reason for you to cut bread out of your diet if you want to stay healthy. Contrary to popular belief, not all bread is bad for you! It’s simply a matter of knowing which breads won’t wreck your diet, and which to avoid. Lucky for you, I’ve done my research and found some healthy breads out there and targeted some not-so-healthy options. So the next time you’re in the supermarket trying to decide which bread to pull off the shelf, keep this advice in mind.

Belly-bulging breads

There are certain red-flags to look out for when buying bread, namely hydrogenated oils/trans fats, high fructose corn syrup, and wheat flour. Some breads may appear to be healthy, but you need to read the label first! For instance, just because the bread has “wheat” in the name doesn’t make it healthy. Read the ingredients to make sure the bread is made with 100% whole wheat or 100% whole grain. Anything else is likely made with refined white flour. Whole grains are the best for your diet, as they’re naturally low-fat and cholesterol free.

Here are some culprits to look out for:

  • The Mission 96% Fat Free Flour Tortillas: Just because they claim to be mostly fat free doesn’t make them healthy! These tortillas contain hydrogenated oils/trans fats, which can cause belly fat, and other more threatening health problems like heart disease.
  • Sara Lee Soft and Smooth Honey 100% Whole Wheat Bread: This option may sound healthy since it’s 100% whole wheat, but again look at the ingredients: it contains high fructose corn syrup which can make you hungrier.
  • Wonder’s Original English Muffins: There are much better English muffin options out there, as this one is made with refined wheat flour (not 100% whole wheat) and contains high fructose corn syrup.

Belly-flattening breads

Don’t despair. There are some healthy options out there if you know what to look for! There are plenty of healthy supermarket options that are high in fiber, made with 100% whole wheat or 100% whole grains, low in sodium, and low in saturated fat.

Here are a few good choices to get you started:

  • Food for Life Genesis 1:29 bread: It’s made with sprouted grains and seeds.
  • Oroweat English Muffins
  • Thomas’ Better Start English Muffins

Well, that’s all for now! Always look at the ingredients of whatever you’re buying. If you know what to look out for, then there’s nothing keeping you from consuming some of your favorite foods! For more health and nutrition advice, check out my articles on

Beware the Shady Scale

Feet_on_scaleIf there’s one thing dieters hate even more than the prospect of losing weight and altering their eating habits, it’s stepping onto the scale and obsessing over the little numbers that glare up at them. Who would think such a simple mechanism could hold so much power over our psyches and self-esteem? Taken out of context, the numbers that appear don’t mean anything-they merely represent a numerical value, but for many people trying to lose weight, those numbers are everything. Many place their entire self-worth into their weight.

Well, I have some good news. You may think that the only way you’ll ever lose weight is to keep daily tabs on the number on the scale, but I want everyone to know that’s not the case. In fact, one of the biggest mistakes anyone can make in their weight loss plan is to weigh themselves every day. This torturous act is both unnecessary and inaccurate.

There’s a fine line between control and compulsion. It’s good to take control of your weight, and for some, monitoring one’s weight regularly is a strategy for staying in control. But this routine can easily turn into an obsession and that’s where the scale becomes dangerous, leading to discouragement or even the development of an eating disorder.

Here are some specific reasons why checking your weight daily can be dangerous:

Discouragement: It’s easy to feel defeated when the numbers on the scale don’t reflect all the effort you put into your weight loss plan. You may think, “But that’s not fair! I gave up sweets and exercised every day this week! How have I not lost any weight?” Sometimes, when we expect the numbers on the scale to go down, they defy our expectations and go up. This is normal and, as frustrating as it may be, you’re not alone. However, if you become discouraged every time you experience a setback in your weight loss goals, you could easily decide to throw in the towel completely and give up on your diet.

Not an accurate representation: It may be easy to become discouraged, but before you give into negativity, you need to realize that daily fluctuation of your weight is completely natural. The main reason you may have lost a few pounds one day only to gain it back the next day (with no drastic changes to your diet) is water retention. Minor fluctuations are natural and occur daily, so instead of weighing yourself every day and fixating on the short-term, you should focus on long-term goals.

There are much better ways to assess if your weight loss efforts are paying off. Primarily, it comes down to how you feel. Do you feel healthy? Does your body feel a little tighter and leaner? Are your clothes fitting more loosely? Do you feel like you have more energy and strength propelling you through the day? Is exercising becoming easier. These are the questions you should be asking yourself. Becoming a healthier version of yourself isn’t all about losing weight, and it’s most often a gradual process that’s more like a marathon than a sprint. Keep in mind, muscle actually weighs more than fat and the scale won’t be able to tell if you’ve lost fat and gained muscle.

So, what can you do to monitor your weight without becoming addicted to the scale? For starters, get into the habit of weighing yourself less. Cutting your weigh-ins down to once a week rather than every day will allow you to focus on your goals without becoming discouraged. It will also help to be consistent, so weigh yourself on the same scale at the same time of day on the same day of the week. If you want the most accurate reading, you should weigh yourself in the morning before you’ve had anything to eat or drink. Make it one of the first things you do when you get up, because as you eat and drink throughout the day, your weight will fluctuate.

If there’s one piece of advice you should take away from this article, it’s not to become discouraged! Losing weight is not a competition and everyone goes at it at their own pace. What matters is that you make a concerted effort. Weight loss takes time, but if you stick to your goals and limit yourself to one weigh-in per week, you’ll start to notice results.

The Breathing Exercise that Eats Belly Fat

In the swirling chaos of our daily lives, stress often rises to the surface and influences our mood, our attitude, and our hormones. When we try to compartmentalize this mental duress, it soon becomes physically apparent, whether we like it not. In fact, it can incite inflammation, accelerated aging, poor judgment, bad decisions, and impaired slumber. Put frankly, stress makes you fat, sick, dumb, and weak.

For example, scientists at the University of California at San Francisco have found a proven association between cortisol (the stress hormone) and belly fat content. Yet, despite this terrible news being proven (we all knew it was true anyway), there is something we can do to take control of our lives and our own fitness. We are not subject to the whim of inevitable stress.

Essentially, you can combat stress and relax through something called “deep belly breathing.” When engaging in “deep belly breathing,” you are able to overcome your body’s stress response, decrease your cortisol production, and bolster your melatonin creation (the sleep hormone that also protects against aging). Alright, alright, now here’s how you do it:

  1. Sit or lie down in a dark and quiet room. Place the palm of your hand on your stomach.
  2. Take a deep, slow breath through your nose and pay particular attention to how your stomach rises and falls underneath your hand.
  3. Exhale. Slowly, and for as long and steadily as possible (like, for at least five seconds). Breathe out until your lungs are entirely devoid of air.

And that’s it! Just repeat steps one through three every night for at least a week and I promise you will not only feel better and more energized, but you’ll even notice your waistline shrinking! Yet, that’s not all. There’s actually another trick that has been proven to burn 400% more fat when used, and it takes less than a minute!

Another study published in the Journal of International Medical Research illustrated that people who used the same aforementioned trick actually managed to lose 20% of their body fat in only 12 weeks. If you want to burn 400% more fat than you would otherwise by dedicating a simple minute, check out this neat and easy to understand video.

Late Night Snack that Burns Fat & Fights Stress

Yes, you read correctly, the the title of this article is “Late Night Snack that Burns Fat & Fights Stress.” I bet you never thought you could use all of these awesome adjectives to describe one food item, did you? Do you want to try to guess what it is? I’ll give you a few hints: it’s a fruit from Barbados, it’s citrusy, it’s slightly pink, and it’s delicious. If you guessed a grapefruit, you just won the lottery my friend, and I’ll tell you why!

This healthy snack will revolutionize the way you snack throughout the day and especially late at night. Let’s start with the never-ending list of health benefits that grapefruits provide. Grapefruits contain 26% more vitamin C than oranges. These leads them to be an excellent source of antioxidants that will promote healthy skin, hair, nails, and bones. Grapefruits also possess anti-aging properties that promote youthfulness and a healthy glow. Moreover, grapefruits fight stress due to the fact that vitamin C significantly lowers levels of a stress hormone called cortisol. Cortisol is also a fat-storing hormone that is directly linked to increased belly fat, so the fact that all that vitamin C found in the grapefruit lowers the hormone quantity means that it will not only help you combat stress, but it will also help you burn fat simultaneously. Can it get any better than that?

Yes it can! Grapefruits also serve as an appetite suppressor and a cravings crusher. Researchers from the Vanderbilt University found that when people added fresh grapefruit to their diet they automatically consumed 500 less calories per day and their weight loss rate increased over 13%. If you’re not convinced, I totally understand; it’s hard to believe, but grapefruits are the real deal! In another study, researchers from Scripps Clinic in California discovered that over the course of 12 weeks, overweight people who ate fresh grapefruit before meals lost five times more weight than individuals who didn’t. If that doesn’t convince you, I don’t know what will. So go ahead, add this low-glycemic, this low-sugar carbohydrate, this amazing fruit to your late snack sessions and your overall diet and begin to enjoy all of the benefits that will soon result from it.

LOSE Weight with a Cheat Day

Naturally, when we are surrounded by the ones we love we want to eat what they eat. No one wants to worry about their caloric intake or their excess carbohydrates when they are relaxing around a low-key tailgate or barbecue. I mean, just let me eat my bacon-wrapped cheeseburger, right? Who possibly diets as a lifestyle without ever cheating? I’ll tell you. No one; and that’s because cheat days don’t have to be bad for you. They can actually help you to LOSE weight. Really. Here’s how I do it following a day of excess:

Day 1: Take a protein shake day.

During this day I only consume healthy protein powders mixed with almond milk to cleanse my system and reinvigorate my muscle fibers. This actually, and naturally, “shrinks” my stomach so that in the succeeding days I am less hungry overall. My appetite decreases. For the record, I eat four shakes about three hours apart give or take.

Day 2: Eat protein and veggies.

Throughout the course of the day I eat about five very small meals, also three hours apart. The meals are composed of solely low fat, lean protein. Occasionally I’ll add some cottage cheese and eggs but I generally like to keep each of these meals pretty restrictive in terms of size. Although, I will include healthy fats like coconut oil and/or organic butter for a little flavor. There’s no reason food has to taste bad just because you’re dieting!

Day 3: Binge Day

This is the fun one. On the third day after a cheat day I’ll dive into some thicker carbs over the course of my five mini-meals. However, I will also make sure to include an additional half-cup of “high-energy” carbs through slow-absorbing mediums to take care those carbs that are not converted into body fat. Then, I’ll eat one, just one, splurge meal, and obliterate whatever I want. There’s no holds barred. I just make sure to not get overly full. Basically, it’s a mini meal that’s just a little smaller. I also ensure that this binge meal is not my last food of the day.

By following these rules, I not only get back on track to losing whatever extra weight I may have gained from my cheat day, but my metabolism is actually accelerated. This way I lose weight even faster than I was before my cheat day. Sometimes, our metabolisms begin to plateau in the way of speed when it becomes too used to the same diet. So when you switch it up a bit, it has to adapt and thus runs at optimum efficiency.

Anyway, I hope these tips and tricks help you to capitalize if you fall a little off-track. Good luck!