sugar detox
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Sugar Detox Plan

By Melissa Mitri, MS, RD on Nov 29, 2021

Tags: Nutrition

 

A sugar detox plan or “sugar cleanse” is the process of removing sugar from your diet. Many people start a sugar detox to reduce sugar cravings, break a sugar addiction, and improve health.

Sugar detoxes should be done for at least a week, and up to a month for the best results.

While sugar detoxes can vary slightly in their requirements, the focus is generally on cutting out added sugars in particular from your diet.

Added sugars are found in many foods nowadays such as sweetened beverages, desserts, processed foods, and condiments. They are also hidden in many foods marketed as healthy such as granola bars, breakfast cereals, and yogurts.

Excess added sugar intake has been associated with an increased risk of health problems such as obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. Added sugar may also be chemically addicting, leading you to crave more and more every time you have it.

 

Sugar Detox Benefits

Here are some of the most well-known benefits of a sugar detox:

  1. Reduced sugar cravings
  2. Weight loss
  3. Decreased risk of chronic disease
  4. Improved oral health
  5. Supports liver health
  6. Enhanced mood and focus
  7. Lowers inflammation

Many experts agree that reducing sugar intake can improve health. Dr. Robert Lustig, a well-regarded pediatric endocrinologist and nutrition expert has stated “All successful diets have three concepts - low in sugar, high fiber, and fat and carbohydrate consumed together in the presence of an offsetting amount of fiber.”

The latest 2020-2025 USDA Dietary Guidelines for Americans also recommend limiting added sugar intake to 10% or less of your total calories, and ideally less than 8%. Most of us are going above this amount based on our food choices, which can negatively impact our health.

 

Sugar Withdrawal

When you first start a sugar detox plan, you may experience symptoms of sugar withdrawal. These symptoms can be mental or physical, but are usually short-lived:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Carb and sugar cravings
  • Lack of focus
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea

While giving up sugar may feel difficult at first, it will get easier just in time for you to reap the benefits.

 

How to Do a Sugar Detox

There are no hard and fast rules to a sugar cleanse, but the most important part is to limit added sugar as much as possible.

The goal is to limit any foods on the “avoid” list as much as possible for the first three days and to slowly add them back in (minus any of the processed foods) over time.

Foods to Eat

High protein foods

  • Meat and poultry - Chicken, turkey, beef
  • Fish
  • Eggs
  • Beans
  • Plain yogurt
  • Cheese
  • Peanut butter
  • Nuts
  • Jerky - such as our CHOMPS meat snacks
  • Unsweetened protein powder

Healthy Fats

  • Avocados
  • Nuts
  • Olives
  • Olive oil
  • Fatty fish like salmon and tuna

Vegetables

Most non-starchy vegetables other than potatoes, butternut squash, corn, and peas

Whole grains

  • Farro
  • Quinoa
  • Ezekiel bread
  • Rolled oats/Steel-cut oats
  • Brown rice

Foods to Avoid or Limit

Starchy vegetables

  • Potatoes
  • Butternut squash
  • Corn
  • Peas

Refined Grains

  • Bread
  • Rice
  • Pasta

Fruit (In some cases- can still include if only avoided added sugar)

Sugar-sweetened beverages

  • Soda
  • Juice
  • Energy drinks
  • Sweetened coffees
  • Alcohol
  • Milk

Processed products with added sugar

  • Energy or protein bars
  • Condiments
  • Sauces
  • Desserts
  • Sugary cereals
healthy meat snack

Incorporating healthy snacks such as CHOMPS meat snacks can curb hunger and ease your sugar-free transition. Our new CHOMPS Pepperoni Seasoned Turkey jerky has 0 grams of sugar, 10 grams of grass-fed protein, and is a mouthwatering addition to your healthy sugar detox.

 

Sugar Detox Meal Plan

If you want to cut sugar from your diet, here is a 7-day sugar detox meal plan to get you started.

low carb meals

Day 1

Breakfast: Plain Greek yogurt with a handful of nuts

Lunch: Green salad with grilled chicken and almonds

Dinner: Crockpot chicken and bean stew

Snack: ½ cup plain cottage cheese with cucumber slices

 

Day 2

Breakfast: Cheesy scrambled eggs with spinach

Lunch: Turkey zoodle bowl

Dinner: Cauliflower rice with black beans and cilantro

Snack: 1 CHOMPS Original Beef Jerky Stick

 

Day 3

Breakfast: Omelette with broccoli, cheese, and red pepper with avocado

Lunch: Lamb burger patty with carrots, cucumber, and yogurt sauce

Dinner: Baked lemon-dill salmon with roasted kale

Snack: Bell peppers and hummus

 

Day 4

Breakfast: Ezekiel toast with peanut butter and cut up banana

Lunch: Grain bowl with shrimp and mixed greens

Dinner: Chicken sausage spaghetti squash boat

Snack: 1 clementine

 

Day 5

Breakfast: Brown rice cakes with guacamole, a sunny-side-up egg, and hot sauce

Lunch: Tuna quinoa salad in lettuce wraps

Dinner: Sheet pan tilapia and asparagus with sweet potato

Snack: 1 CHOMPS Jalapeno Turkey Jerky Stick

 

Day 6

Breakfast: Scrambled eggs with cut up CHOMPS Original Turkey Jerky Sticks, ½ cup berries

Lunch: Spinach salad with cranberries and grilled chicken

Dinner: Edamame stir-fry with cauliflower rice

Snack: Plain Greek yogurt with sunflower seeds

 

Day 7

Breakfast: Steel-cut oats with ½ cup blueberries

Lunch: Vegetable soup with beans

Dinner: Chicken thighs with green beans and ½ cup brown rice

Snack: 1 cheese stick with a handful of grapes

 

If you’re in need of a sugar detox, there are many nutritious and satisfying options to meet your needs. Ridding your body of as much added sugar as possible can not only reduce powerful sugar cravings but can improve your mood and overall health.

Here at CHOMPS, we’re not short of options to help support you in your sugar detox journey. Visit our CHOMPS store to explore our delicious high-protein snacks with 0 grams of sugar!

 

FAQs about Sugar Detox Diets

  1. What is a sugar detox diet? A sugar detox diet involves abstaining from added sugar in your diet. It is commonly used as a way to improve health and break sugar addiction.
  2. Do you need to avoid all sugar on a sugar detox diet? Typically the focus is on avoiding added sugar on a sugar detox diet, as this type of sugar is the most detrimental to our health. Natural sources of sugar are sometimes allowed in certain amounts. The diet usually is the most strict in the first few days, then gradually starts to allow more natural sources of sugar from fruit, grains, and starchy vegetables.
  3. How long do you need to follow a sugar detox diet? It depends on the person, but it is recommended to follow for at least a week, and up to a month. After this timeframe, the recommendation is to slowly reintroduce natural sources of sugar back into the diet.
  4. What are the benefits of a sugar detox diet? The potential benefits include reduced cravings, weight loss, improved mood and focus, improved energy, as well as enhanced oral, liver, and overall health.
Are there any side effects of a sugar detox diet? Side effects are possible in the beginning, such as depression, anxiety, insomnia, carb cravings, dizziness, lack of focus, nausea, and fatigue. These symptoms are most common in the beginning and typically wade over time as your body adjusts.
About the author

Melissa Mitri, MS, RD

Melissa Mitri, RD Melissa is a health writer with over 12 years of experience in the field of nutrition. She specializes in helping women move away from restrictive habits that lead to vicious yo-yo weight cycles. Melissa enjoys writing about health, nutrition, and fitness with the goal of simplifying complex health topics for the reader. You can find out more about Melissa at www.melissamitri.com.

Melissa Mitri, MS, RD

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