I confess to a long-standing, love-hate relationship with sugar. Already well aware the stuff lays the path for multiple health and wellness issues, I was among those who became teary-eyed upon learning sugar ages our skin by altering our collagen. It was a painful moment, yet one greatly relieved by a bit of shortbread.

You see the problem, don’t you?

As a carbohydrate, sugar has the potential to release those calming endorphins and to stimulate that feel-good brain chemical, serotonin. Are the six teaspoons of sugar the American Heart Association says a woman is to daily limit herself to enough to open the gates? Apparently many of us wish to hedge our bet by consuming an average of 22 teaspoons a day.

As one who has both scooped 22 teaspoons of sugar into a pile for the shocking visual and who has found herself making frosting to dip sugar-free cookies into, I feel uniquely qualified to make the following suggestions on how you might best curb that sweet yearning:

1. Grab a piece of fruit: obvious choice

2. Pop a stick of gum: classic choice

3. Boost your water intake: mundane yet effective

4. Go for a 10-minute walk: not as ambitious as it seems

5. Brush your teeth with peppermint: surprisingly effective…and exhilarating

6. Bite into a lemon: Sour trumps sweet…taste wise only of course

7. Eat regularly: without finishing with dessert

8. Eat a protein at each meal: without finishing with dessert

Would share more but I’m off to buy a lemon tree.

Nursing Your Sweet Tooth
by Laurie Nienhaus