"Research suggests that refined sugar and other highly processed foods can lead to food addiction and compulsive overeating", says leading Canadian health and diabetes researcher Dr. Farrell Cahill. For more on food addiction click here.
Canadians consume, on average, 88 pounds of total sugars from all sources, each year. That's FOUR TIMES the daily recommended limit by the World Health Organization. Excess consumption of sugar has been linked to obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, cancer, and strokes. High sugar foods have also been linked to food addiction – a primary inhibitor of healthy weight management.
Join the challenge today to receive daily tasks, sugar-free recipes, trivia, and encouraging tips from registered dietitian, Jessica Tong, to help you ditch refined sugar for 30 days. Encourage family, friends, and colleagues to join the challenge with you and take action against sugar together. Your challenge starts in 24 hours from your sign up time (and your daily tips will be emailed to you every 24 hours for 30 days).
NOTE: If you have a pre-existing health condition that may require you to maintain a specific or restrictive diet, do NOT commence this challenge or make changes to your prescribed diet before speaking with your doctor or a Registered Dietitian.
When will I receive my daily tips/recipes/trivia etc.? You will receive your first sugar-challenge task exactly 24 hours after signing up for the challenge. Each subsequent daily sugar challenge email will follow 24 hours after the previous, at the original sign up time. For example, if you'd like to receive your daily tips first thing in the morning at 7am, simply sign up for the challenge at 7am.
Are wine or beer OK during the challenge? Sugar found in dry wine is mostly residual sugar from the wine grapes as opposed to added sugar. Also, during the fermentation process, sugar is converted to alcohol. A dry wine that contains <2 g of sugar per litre is acceptable during the challenge. Beer does not contain added sugar but may contain <1 g residual sugar from fermentation as well. Therefore, both beer and dry wine containing <2 g sugar per litre are acceptable during the challenge. When consuming any alcoholic beverages, moderation is key.
Are sweeteners such as honey, maple syrup, stevia, and agave OK during the challenge? These are not permitted during the challenge. We advised to omit all sweeteners, including stevia because many stevia products also include sugar alcohols or dextrose (it’s important to read labels). The goal of this challenge is to help participants to reduce sugar cravings, and to promote enjoyment of foods that are less sweet than they may be used to. When you continue to stimulate your sweet receptors with products that add sweetness including stevia, you may be more likely to continue to experience sugar cravings.
What about artificial sweeteners like Splenda? Although Splenda and artificial sweeteners do not contain sugar, they are sweet. Also, consuming foods containing artificial sweeteners may sustain or increase our affinity towards sweet-tasting foods and beverages, or trigger cravings. Therefore, it is encouraged that artificial sweeteners are avoided during the challenge.
I signed up and haven't received any emails. What do I do? Please check your junk mail or spam filters. If you still can't find the email, contact Cecilia.Carbonel@medisys.ca for technical support.