Artificial Sweeteners: The answer to the ‘Blood Sugar Rollercoaster’?

sweetenersOver the past few weeks I profiled some of the risks associated with the ‘blood sugar rollercoaster’. I pointed out that wild fluctuations in blood sugar levels can have profound effects on brain function and that any person dealing with the effects of ADD/ADHD should take proactive steps to avoid the dangerous ‘spike – trough’ cycle and its attendant problems. I also made some specific suggestions on how to maintain healthy blood sugar levels. If you paid attention to these suggestions you would have noticed that there is one that is conspicuous in its absence. This is a strategy that has million dollar marketing budgets behind it and that many people turn to at the slightest hint of blood sugar problems. Yet I chose not to include it and I made this decision based on some very good reasons. The strategy that I am talking about is: Making use of artificial sweeteners. Continue reading “Artificial Sweeteners: The answer to the ‘Blood Sugar Rollercoaster’?”

Some hard facts about soft drinks

soft-drinksOver the past few weeks we looked at the importance of maintaining healthy blood sugar levels and also at different ways of doing so. One of the lists of specific suggestions that I shared with you contained a recommendation that is so important that it actually deserves to be treated in much more depth. That suggestion is: Stay away from sugary soft drinks! There are few things in the North American diet that contributes so directly to the current obesity epidemic, and also to the emotional and behavioral problems associated with elevated blood sugar levels, as the seemingly innocent looking glasses of sugar infused sodas that most people knock back, without thinking twice about its potential impact on the body and the brain.  Continue reading “Some hard facts about soft drinks”

Beating Sugar Cravings (Part 2)

craving-donutsMost of us know only too well how a sugar craving feels. It usually presents itself as an overwhelming urge to eat some sugary food…and fast! This is normally followed by an all too brief period of elation which inevitably leads into feelings of regret and even despair. Conquering this vicious cycle is not easy but it is possible!  Last week we began our look at some of the best strategies for dealing with sugar cravings. I also underlined the importance of doing so for people who have to deal with the effects of ADD/ADHD. This week’s article will continue this discussion by profiling some more excellent strategies for ‘beating the binge’! Continue reading “Beating Sugar Cravings (Part 2)”

Beating Sugar Cravings (Part 1)

sugar-sweetsOver the past few weeks I have often referred to the ‘blood sugar rollercoaster’ as we discussed the importance of maintaining healthy blood sugar levels. One of the features of this rollercoaster is the intense cravings for a ‘sugar fix’ that often accompanies it. Giving in to these cravings can be the start of a vicious circle where the next ‘fix’ leads to more intense ‘highs’ and subsequently to lower ‘troughs’! If you are dealing with ADD/ADHD you simply cannot afford the emotional and physical fallout of this kind of see-saw game. Avoiding sugar cravings, and properly managing them when they do occur, should therefore be one of your highest nutritional priorities. Continue reading “Beating Sugar Cravings (Part 1)”

Maintaining Balanced Blood Sugar Levels

Last week we discussed the role of the Glycemic Index (GI) in maintaining blood sugar at healthy levels. The bottom line of that discussion was that our diets should be filled with foods with a low value on the Glycemic Index as the energy in these foods will take much longer to be released into the bloodstream in the form of glucose. This will prevent our bodies from going on the all too familiar blood sugar rollercoaster that is so effective in messing with our physical and mental states. Maintaining ‘blood sugar equilibrium’ is certainly not only an optional extra for people dealing with ADD/ADHD. It is one of the central weapons in your arsenal when it comes to staying on an even keel mentally and emotionally. The focus of this week’s article will be to give some practical tips on how this equilibrium can be achieved and maintained. Some top tips for doing this are the following: Continue reading “Maintaining Balanced Blood Sugar Levels”

Why Should I Bother Changing My Diet?

drugs_vs_dietOnce you have learned that you or your child has ADD/ADHD, you will need to research treatment alternatives.  Nearly all of us have heard of the various drugs used to treat your brain’s chemistry.  In fact, a diagnosis of ADD/ADHD has become a real trend in the past few years, possibly resulting in many erroneous diagnoses.  At any rate, if you truly believe that this is what you have, it’s time to get serious about learning to manage symptoms.  Now all of a sudden, you are hearing that diet may be a viable treatment option.  In fact, you have probably read that here if you have looked at our site!  So if you choose to refrain from medication, why should you bother changing your diet?

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How Carbohydrates Affect Blood Sugar Levels

Last week we had a general discussion on the topic of blood sugar. One of the main things that came out of this discussion was the fact that abnormal (either too high or too low) levels of glucose in the bloodstream can have very serious consequences in terms of general health and wellbeing. For the person dealing with the effects of ADD/ADHD these consequences can be even more pronounced as blood sugar abnormalities often manifest in the form of emotional instability and a lack of focus. It therefore goes without saying that controlling blood sugar levels should be very high on the list of modern health priorities, especially if you are faced with ADD/ADHD. With this article we will therefore start to unpack some of the most important techniques for maintaining a balanced blood sugar level. Continue reading “How Carbohydrates Affect Blood Sugar Levels”

Getting Off the Rollercoaster – Managing Blood Sugar Levels

Over the past few weeks we had a general look at how the different food types affect brain function. Much of what was discussed confirmed that the old saying ‘You are what you eat!’ is perhaps more true than most people realize! The brain is the nerve centre of the body and determines our actions, thoughts and feelings. If it is not ‘powered up’ in the right way it will lead to us being a little less than we should be! With this week’s article the focus will shift slightly from brain function to another aspect of nutrition, albeit one that still has profound implications for brain function, namely: The maintenance of healthy blood sugar levels. Continue reading “Getting Off the Rollercoaster – Managing Blood Sugar Levels”

Nutrition Tips for Optimum Brain Function

Over the past few weeks we looked at the impact of different food groups (carbohydrates, protein, fats and vitamins and minerals) on optimum brain function. One thing that stood out throughout this discussion is the fact that brain nutrition is not something that we can simply leave to chance. Eating whatever takes your fancy and hoping for the best is not an option for those who are serious about battling the symptoms of ADD/ADHD through powering up the brain in the most efficient and beneficial way possible!

Continue reading “Nutrition Tips for Optimum Brain Function”