Why Do People Crave Sugar In Addiction Recovery?

Coming off of drugs and transitioning into a sober lifestyle can be difficult. Many of the brain and body’s hormonal, neurological and chemical processes are just starting to regain balance from all of the damage incurred by the drug use. This can leave drug users experiencing a variety of uncomfortable feelings, symptoms, and behaviors that do not just go away because the drug use has ceased. It is also important to note that drug use usually starts because of a pre-existing problem, whether emotional or physical, that needs relief.

do alcoholics crave sugar

So, our brains still perceive sugar as beneficial and release huge amounts of dopamine when we consume sugary, high-calorie foods. In the long term, this can mimic the effects of addiction and create high tolerance and cravings for sugar. Furthermore, can even lead to withdrawal when we cut it out of our diets. That’s why it can be so difficult to resist the urge to consume sweets like candy and cake.

Does One Drink Break Sobriety?

Some people may be concerned about their cravings for sugar and dopamine in early sobriety. There is a tendency in early sobriety to feel the need to instantly become healthy in every aspect of life, including eating habits.

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Simple sugars are digested quickly and lead to blood glucose spikes. To break this cycle, you need to eat balanced meals with protein and complex carbohydrates that will help keep glucose levels stable. But if you’ve quit and are on the road to recovery, it’s important to be aware of the addiction shift from alcohol to sugar. Cravings for both food and alcohol are common when you are newly sober. Cravings occur because your body is still adjusting to sobriety and may be sending you mixed signals. Here are 5 practices that helped me find sweet redemption from my sugar cravings. Here’s a brief explanation of why sugar cravings occur and how you can begin to combat them with healthier options.

Protect your sleep!

Blatner and Dulan have plenty of food options they recommend to help fight sugar cravings. Mitzi Dulan, the owner of SimplyFUEL, why do alcoholics crave sugar echoed Moskovitz and says that it is “very common” for a sugar craving to emerge when you’re not drinking any alcohol.

So, if you have sugar on your mind constantly after quitting alcohol – don’t be too hard on yourself. Sugar and other replacement rewards are not enough to break the destructive cycle of a substance use disorder.

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As a result of regular alcohol drinkers becoming tolerant to sugar from their alcohol intake, it is not uncommon for individuals in recovery from alcohol abuse to experience cravings for sugar. Part of the cravings that individuals new to abstinence from alcohol face are actually sugar cravings, not alcohol cravings. Giving in to sugar cravings during recovery from alcohol is commonplace. Rehabilitation centers often offer high-sugar foods as do mutual-help groups. Even the primary text of Alcoholics Anonymous, known as “The Big Book,” encourages those in sobriety to keep candy on hand in order to curb cravings for alcohol. It’s not uncommon for individuals who once struggled with alcohol to turn to food in recovery, especially sugary foods. There are psychological and physiological reasons as to why this occurs.

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