How to Overcome Sugar Indoctrination
You and I have been brainwashed. Seriously. We think that eating sugary processed foods is a positive staple in our culture. Advertising has elevated sugary sweets to make them a part our daily activities in ways that nobody seemed to question for an entire generation.
For instance, of the lists below, with which set of positives or negatives would you most associate eating a slice of chocolate cake and a side scoop of ice cream?
- Birth. Wedding. Graduation. Won the game. Good grades.
- Death. Divorce. Dropping out. Lost the game. Bad grades.
Most folks would say the positive list (here’s why). However, if you associated sweets with both lists then the food industry wins twice.
While eating has been part of celebrations for centuries, the consumption of processed food products is still a relatively new phenomenon. As such, a life time of conditioning isn’t going to end after you read one short blog post. You can at least get started in reversing some of your ingrained behaviors by heeding the following advice.
1. Change Your Mind
Stop letting companies dictate what you value. Create your own opinions and make new associations with food. How do you do that? In the same way the food companies did it—by being relentless! Do the next steps over and over again.
2. Prepare Your Own Food
Make your own healthy snacks. Try different things: carrots and creme cheese. Olives and pickles. Try any sugar-free snacks and see what you like.
3. Make Eating Fun
Put colorful stickers on containers and store your home-made snacks in them. Every time you see the sticker that you put on the packaging of the food you made, you will be reminded that you are in control of your life and your health.
4. Make Mistakes
Nobody is perfect. Going sugar-free is not all or nothing. Even low-sugar crackers can be better than super-sweet cookies.
5. Celebrate & Replace
Eat healthy snacks while doing the things you normally do. If you liked having cookies while watching movies, replace the cookies with something healthy.
6. Stop Apologizing
Just because the majority of people do something doesn’t mean it’s the right thing to do. So many people would rather fit in than do their own thing and risk the possibility of standing out. You don’t need to make a statement. You don’t have to be a hero. Just quietly do your thing.
7. Avoid Ads
When I first met my wife, she would mute our television whenever commercials came on. At first I thought it was peculiar but when I watched a show without her one day, the noise from the advertisements was overwhelming. I now do my best to avoid advertising if I can help it. By not looking or listening you are diminishing the influence that companies have over your wallet and your health.