I'm preparing for another large Sugar Addiction Workshop. I invite you to follow along as I prepare the presentation. This also follows my book, Sugar....the Hidden Eating Disorder & How to Lick It. Still looking for a mainstream publisher.
The workshop & book are both didactic & experiential.
By definition, sugar addiction is an eating disorder, having both physiological and psychological facets. Interactive Awareness and Interactive Self-Hypnosis, two powerful mind and body tools, can help you understand concepts that might be confusing.
Most of us wouldn’t raise our hands for an in-depth discussion of genetics, but there are some things you do need to know. When discussing sugar addiction, the family medical history is very important. We all begin life with what we will call a “genetic wallpaper” that needs to be cared for. Certain diseases in the family history form wallpaper that has a tendency towards sugar addiction. Our nutritional intake, as well as how we manage stress and other lifestyle behaviors affect the “genetic wallpaper”, often leading to eating disorders and other chronic problems. Here in this workshop that follows my book, we will explore the connections, helping you to view your wallpaper and teaching you how to care for it.
Over the years I've interviewed hundreds of people who are sugar addicted. While the idea of "getting in control' is inviting, few seem willing to effort or struggle for long. Once life's stressors begin mounting, new lifestyle changes are quickly thrown out the window in exchange for the more comfortable immediate gratification. Newbie changes are buried along with the other diet books, gym membership cards and unsuccessful plans for self-improvement. The failure cycle is enhanced one more time. If this rings true for you, this work can change your course.
KNOWLEDGE HOOK - Sugar and Medical Issues
Here are some additional motivators for you. There is no question that as a society we eat far too much sugar, but that is only one part of the problem. We are a sleep-walking society. Few of us pay attention to what we eat, drink or to how we manage stress. Statistics prove this out. The health problems related to sugar addiction and poor lifestyle behaviors are much more complicated than they appear on the surface. The numbers are startling.
While not all sugar-addicted individuals are overweight, many are or will be if they continue to live their lives without correction. The U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention report that obesity rates for Americans rose a staggering 57% between 1991 and 1999, triggering a 6 percent increase in the incidence of diabetes. In actual numbers there are 15.7 million people diagnosed with diabetes in this country and another 5.4 million people are not aware they have this disease.
These figures do not take into account those people who are pre-diabetic or experiencing the symptoms of sugar addiction.
Diabetes risk factors include smoking, high cholesterol, obesity and cardiovascular disease.
According to the Center for Disease Control, 61,800,000 Americans have one or more types of cardiovascular disease and about 1 in 5 deaths is attributable to smoking. In addition, about 40,000 non-smokers die from cardiovascular disease each year as a result of exposure to environmental smoke. Cardiovascular disease risk factors include hypertension, smoking, high blood cholesterol, obesity and diabetes. Is this sounding familiar?
What is particularly alarming about these statistics is the growing number of children who are overweight and out of shape -- 5.3 million, or 12.5 percent, of Americans between 6 and 17 -- and the frightening health implications behind these numbers. Obesity in childhood can lead to the development of a host of medical problems, including elevated cholesterol, hypertension, respiratory infections and sleep apnea.
Researchers report that impaired glucose tolerance and insulin resistance, conditions that are precursors to type 2 diabetes, are highly prevalent in children and adolescents who are obese. As a result, Type-2 Diabetes once considered an "adults-only" disease, is appearing in children and teens in epidemic proportions. It's important to note here that only those who were obese were tested and studies need to done that include all children with poor nutritional intake.
An alarming statistic is that 50,000,000 Americans age 6 and over have high blood pressure. Age 6? This is very frightening and is good cause to wake up and take the bag off your head. This is a dangerous sleeping giant who is slowly awakening. Disease prevention and lifestyle management must be part of elementary schooling and taken up through all the years of formal education.
Statistics should be viewed as flags indicating where change is needed. While most would agree with the lifestyle changes suggested by every major health organization and the government, the question remains as to why people don't change and what has to happen for them to do so.
KNOWLEDGE HOOK - Sugar and Addictive Issues
Here are some additional negative motivators. Only recently has sugar addiction or reactive hypoglycemia been recognized as "the shadow" behind many common problems and diagnoses.
In American we have over 11 million alcoholics. Studies found that almost 7 million persons aged 12 to 20 (under the legal drinking age) was a binge drinker. Alcohol is sugar and is closely connected to reactive hypoglycemia. One doesn't have to look far for poor nutritional patterns in addictive individuals. It simply sings out, asking to be noticed.
WHY PEOPLE DON'T CHANGE
Once again the question is asked as to why people don't change. The question appears simple, but the answer is much more complex. It includes lack of special education, not just advertising. People need to be able to experience outcomes before the fact, as well as be taught tools for managing their outer and inner selves. As you continue through the workshop & book, you will learn many of these.
KNOWLEDGE HOOK - Sugar and Emotional Issues
More statistics! More motivators! More flags.... over 36 million people are depressed. This emotional problem is predicted to be the leading occupational disease of the 21st century, responsible for more days lost than any other single factor. In addition, over 100 million Americans suffer with headaches and another 50 million with sleep problems are often suffering with a body chemistry problem that can be improved and even corrected by taking in the proper foods and caring for the self, the tools for which are presented in this workshop & book.
One of the most unappreciated stressors is food stress , usually seen as sugar addiction and poor nutritional intake. It is a major player both in and out of the workplace and cost is extremely high to both employer and employee. Stress is both additive and cumulative in its negative effects on individuals, organizations and societies. Workplace stress continues to grow. In the U.S., experts at the Centers for Disease Control and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health are dedicated to studying stress.
Stress is linked to physical and mental health, as well as decreased willingness to take on new and creative endeavors. Job burnout experienced by 25% to 40% of U.S. workers is blamed on stress. More than ever before, employee stress is being recognized as a major drain on corporate productivity and competitiveness. $300 billion, or $7,500 per employee, is spent annually in the U.S. on stress-related compensation claims, reduced productivity, absenteeism, health insurance costs, direct medical expenses (nearly 50% higher for workers who report stress), and employee turnover.
It’s a worldwide phenomenon. Statistics from a recent global stress research study show that increased stress is felt worldwide, and stress affects women differently than men:
A recent Roper Starch Worldwide survey of 30,000 people between the ages of 13 and 65 in 30 countries showed that women who work full-time and have children under the age of 13 report the greatest stress worldwide. In addition, nearly one in four mothers who work full-time and have children under 13 feel stress almost every day. Globally, 23% of women executives and professionals, and 19% of their male peers, say they feel "super-stressed".
KNOWLEDGE HOOK - Sugar and Cognitive Functioning
We can also find sugar addiction rearing it's head in the area of cognitive functioning, including memory, focus, concentration, mental flexibility and levels of creativity. It is not uncommon for a golfer or tennis player to have a focus issue and find it related to poor nutritional intake, often sugar addiction. Another vivid example is a student having test anxiety with memory recall problems. Sugar addiction and under-nutrition are usually screaming out for attention.
ADD/ADHD is the most commonly diagnosed childhood behavior disorder today. Experts believe that more than two million (3 to 5 %) children have attention deficit disorder. The core symptoms of inattention, impulsivity, and hyperactivity, are exhibited. In addition, ADD/ADHD children also experience social and academic difficulties. Children with the disorder are handed a psychiatric label, a drug prescription and a discouraging diagnosis that travels into adulthood. According to statistics supporting the Americans with Disabilities Act, 3-10% of the U.S. population have ADHD symptoms. Dr. Mary Ann Block, a specialist in ADHD states, "I've determined that diet is one of the most significant factors behind ADHD symptoms. It's what people eat or don't eat that creates the degrees of the disorder.