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Try Some Useful Herbs for Sugar Addition

written by: Sylvie Colette • edited by: lrohner • updated: 1/20/2011

Sugar can wreak havoc on the body. A sugar addiction is a little talked-about problem that can have disastrous results. Learn how to use herbs for sugar addiction and limit the damage done to your health and appearance.

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    Sugar is everywhere. It is very easy to consume much more than intended since sugar is added to many processed foods; even those that do not seem like a sweet food. Sugar cravings can go too far, leading to a full-blown addiction to the substance.

    Treat a sugar addiction seriously. Using herbs for sugar addiction offers a comprehensive, yet gentle approach and can have beneficial side effects, unlike sugar.

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    Sugar’s Affect on the Body

    Sugar is not as harmless as it seems. In fact, it can be extremely damaging to the body over time. This is only a partial list of areas an abundance of sugar affects.

    • The free radicals that are formed causes inflammation in the body
    • Sugar damages the collagen fiber in the skin, leading to wrinkles and a saggy appearance.
    • Yeast thrives on sugar. A person with a sugar addiction is very susceptible to infection. The cravings that occur during a candida, or yeast, infection can be quite severe. An outbreak of candida will wreck havoc on a person. Symptoms from itching, burning sensations to joint pain and cramps can all be caused by a yeast infection and can have long-term consequences if left untreated.
    • Bone loss, leading to osteoporosis can occur due to the lack of calcium that is produced in the blood.
    • Sugar impairs immune function and can make the body more susceptible to everything from the common cold to more dangerous infections
    • Depression is common in people with a strong sugar addiction. The chemicals cause extreme highs and lows in emotions an energy levels
    • Sugar is harmful for the teeth
    • Sugar can open the door to obesity

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    Signs of a Sugar Addiction

    • The cravings are becoming increasingly persistent.
    • There is a desire to cut back
    • There is continual use, despite knowing that is unhealthy and damaging
    • There is continued use even if there are adverse side effects
    • There are withdrawal symptoms if the sugar is not in your system
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    Benefits and Cautions for Herbal Remedies

    In general, herbs are a safe and effective way to treat disorders in the body. The long, rich history of herbal remedies throughout the ages attest to the fact that these treatments work. Herbal products are available almost everywhere you turn. However, the quality can vary greatly. Read the labels carefully when purchasing herbs. Some things to look for include:

    • The name of the compound the standardization is based on
    • The percentage of the compound
    • The ratio of extract
    • The recommended daily dosage
    • The expiration date and product code
    • The producer's name, address, telephone number and website. In case you need to contact the company for additional information

    Treating a sugar addiction with herbs is a gentle choice. The herbs can support the body while it undergoes the withdrawal symptoms and be useful as an alternative to sugar. There are precautions though, especially if you are taking prescription drugs. Consult a health professional if there is any question about safety.

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    Learn about some specific herbs for sugar addiction and recommended ways to take these herbal remedies. There are herbal beverages, sugar substitutes and sugar blockers discussed.
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    Herbal Beverages

    Yerba Mate Yerba Mate is an excellent herb for treating sugar addictions. The benefits include enhancing the healing powers of other herbs. This alone makes it a good choice, but Yerba Mate also controls the appetite, cleanses the blood, slows signs of aging and relieves constipation. One way of taking Yerba Mate is to stir 2-3 tablespoons into a 16 oz cup of hot water. Drink on an empty stomach for best results.

    Sarsaparilla A sweet herb used primarily to regulate hormones, sarsaparilla has an effect on sugar addictions by neutralizing some of the symptoms, allowing the body to stop over-indulging without as many side effects.

    Licorice Root This herb is beneficial for hypoglycemic tendencies, which can be brought on by a sugar addiction. It promotes healthy adrenal gland function and if suffering from ulcers as well; this can improve the quality of the stomach lining. Two sticks of licorice root makes an excellent tea. Licorice root is not recommended for those with high blood pressure or heart disease. Use this herb with caution during pregnancy as well.

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    Sugar Substitute or Blocker

    Stevia Sugar addicts can also use an herb like stevia. It’s a very sweet licorice flavored herb that is 300 times sweeter than sugar. This sugar substitute is great in coffee, or even on a bowl of cereal. The taste may take a little getting used to, but it is healthier than other sugar substitutes. In fact, stevia is generally on sale in the dietary supplement section, rather than with the other sweeteners.

    Gymnema Sylvestre Gymnema Sylvestre is an herb whose name literally means “sugar destroyer" in Hindi. It is an herb that has been used in Ayurveda for centuries. The herb works by eliminating a person’s ability to taste sugar. Continued use of this herb will neutralize cravings for sugar after continued use. It takes approximately 3-4 weeks for this to take complete affect. For proof, take a bite of something sweet, then a gymnema sylvestre tablet and take another bite of something sweet, the herb will completely block the taste of sugar in your mouth. This herb also aids in the internal working of the body, by normalizing the blood sugar levels, even blocking sugar within the intestinal walls. This in turn can help in stabilizing a normal body weight.

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    References

    Balch, James F., M.D. and Balch, Phyllis A., C.N.C. Prescription for Nutritional Healing. Garden City Park, New York, Avery Publishing Group Inc.1990

    Appleton, Nancy. Lick the Sugar Habit. Garden City Park, New York, Avery Publishing Group Inc.1989

    University of Maryland Medical Center: Licorice