Why Do People Get Sugar Cravings After Quitting Drinking?

Many times when a person has given up drugs or quit drinking, they find themselves tempted to replace that addiction with another one. While transfer addictions often mean replacing alcohol with a drug or substituting one drug for another one, it can also happen in the form of eating. People with alcohol use disorder tend to crave sugar because alcohol interferes with their body’s ability to produce dopamine independently. If they are not drinking, their dopamine levels will drop, as will their mood.

As a result, you may instinctively choose a “quick energy” option like foods high in sugar. Among other health benefits, nutritious foods help promote overall physical health. When patients are feeling better physically, they sleep better, stay in a more positive mood and experience an increased ability to focus on their recovery while in treatment. Sugary foods can help those in recovery because they affect the brain like addictive drugs. During the early days of addiction recovery, people often battle intense drug cravings and may be calorically deficient.

How to Manage Sugar Cravings When You Quit Drinking

These spikes and crashes make sugar cravings incredibly common in early recovery from alcohol use disorder. People who abruptly stop drinking may lose a significant source of their calorie intake and have disrupted their body’s blood sugar regulation. But my appreciation of things that taste good and are probably quite bad for me is balanced with a healthy lifestyle and plenty of physical activity. The way it works for me is that I put energy into fueling and exercising my body in a healthy way during the week and allow myself a bit of freedom at weekends. I don’t restrict myself if I’m eating out, on holiday or meeting up with other people. However, while sugar can help with energy levels in the short-term, it can also contribute to problems in the long-term.

Change your relationship with alcohol with the support of a safe, loving space with like minded women. What doesn’t heal is beating the crap out of yourself or linking morality to your food choices. Rather than giving in to the craving right when it strikes, wait it out.

What are the Stages of Change in Addiction?

Therefore, it’s common for someone in early addiction recovery to crave sweets and other sugary foods to try and produce the large amounts of dopamine they need to feel good. The neurobiological pathways of drug and « sugar addiction » involve similar neural receptors, neurotransmitters, and hedonic regions in the brain. Craving, tolerance, withdrawal and sensitization have been documented in both human and animal studies.

Because they affect the body similarly, many people recovering from alcohol addiction use sugar as a replacement for alcohol. It takes time for the body to produce healthy dopamine levels once again after you stop drinking alcohol. It can be tempting to turn to sweets to raise dopamine levels to feel happier and more fulfilled. But swapping one addiction for another only perpetuates the cycle of addiction and can increase the risk of relapsing. Long-term alcohol abuse inhibits the body’s ability to regulate blood sugar levels.

Address Alcohol and Sugar Cravings at Promises Brazos Valley

This can make it easier to become dependent on that other substance—such as replacing alcohol with sugar. Lean meat, seafood, eggs, tofu, edamame, tempeh, beans, nuts, hummus, seeds, almond butter.. https://ecosoberhouse.com/article/why-do-alcoholics-crave-sugar-in-recovery/ (However a mix of both is ideal!) Protein can keep you satisfied throughout the day and provides amino acids to help combat cravings. Don’t go longer than four hours during the day without eating.

It’s important to talk to your doctor if you suffer from low blood sugar. You’d be surprised at how some diet changes can help ease your sugar cravings. In fact, that’s part of the reason why the expert team at Silver Maple Recovery provides healthy meals for patients. It is very common for people in recovery from an alcohol use disorder to crave sugar. In fact, you may find yourself wondering if you should be concerned about developing a sugar addiction.

Why You Get Sugar Cravings After Quitting Alcohol

The liver, the organ that processes any alcohol you drink, is in charge of releasing glycogen into your blood. Alcohol stops this from happening, causing your blood sugar to drop. That’s why alcohol withdrawal and sugar cravings happen frequently.

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