1. You’re Fatigued
If you’re constantly tired and reaching for your next pick-me-up, chances are you’re on a blood sugar roller coaster. When we’re tired, we often reach for even more sugar to counteract the fatigue, which leads to a cycle of sugar-fueled highs and lows.
If you decide to cut out sugar, give your body a few days to adjust—and then you’ll begin to feel your energy levels even out.
2. You Have Sugar or Carb Cravings
Sugar is extremely addictive, and the more of it you eat, the more you crave. If you’re constantly on the hunt for something sugary throughout the day, your body and brain are probably hooked on the sweet stuff.
You’ll find that the less sugar you eat, the less you’ll crave it. When you cut out refined sugar and artificial sweeteners, you’ll reduce your sugar cravings and begin to realize how sweet fruit is.
3. You Have Skin Issues
Sugar can wreak havoc on your skin, causing acne, dryness, and overall skin imbalances. Your skin is a mirror of what’s going on inside your body, so the inflammation that sugar causes on the inside will show up on the outside.
If you have pesky skin issues that won’t go away, examining your sugar intake could be a smart idea.
4. You’re Depressed or Anxious
Sugar is one of the biggest contributors to mood disorders like depression and anxiety. There’s a reason they call it the “sugar blues”—sugar can put you on a roller coaster of emotions that can be hard to get off until you make a commitment to give up the sweet stuff.
In addition to depression and anxiety, you may experience brain fogginess and stress. You’ll feel your mood lighten when you begin to lay off the sugar.
5. You Get Sick a Lot
Sugar suppresses the immune system, so it impairs your body’s ability to fend off stress and chronic illness.
If you’re always “coming down with something” or frequently taking over-the-counter drugs for the common cold, chances are your diet—particularly your sugar intake—could be the culprit. A cleanse that puts you on an elimination diet can help your immune system tremendously.
6. You’re Overweight
You probably know by now that fat doesn’t make you fat—sugar does. A diet high in sugar and refined carbohydrates can definitely keep on the extra weight.
If you’ve been trying to lose weight by eating a low-fat diet, but still including sugars and other carbohydrates, it’s not helping your cause. Try cutting out the sugar and even most of the grains for a couple of weeks and see if it makes a difference.
Sugar can also wreak havoc in the gut, which hinders weight loss, too.
Jenny Sansouci is the publisher of HealthyCrush.com, a graduate of the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, and works as a health coach for Dr. Frank Lipman at the Eleven Eleven Wellness Center in New York City. This article was originally published at drfranklipman.com.