The deal with SUGAR + a convo with my health coach Jessica Suchan

How are you guys? So glad you're here! I am excited about this post.

If you listen to The Almost 30 Podcast, you may have heard me talk about working with a health coach.

I would consider myself pretty healthy. I go to sleep before 9 as much as I can, I meditate daily, I'm plant based, I don't eat fake shit, and I work out regularly.

Blah blah blah.

BUT, for me I need to work on the conversation and internal dialogue. Why is it never good enough? Why am I so hard on myself when I mess up? Why do I find myself in the binge and restrict cycle? That popped up regularly.

With the binge piece, it's not so much going to 7-11 and eating 70 pop tarts and washing it down with a Mountain Dew, it's 'healthy food'. Ya know it, jars of peanut butter, too  much of a good thing which led to a restrictive mentality after because I had felt like I had too much.

I've had a thing with eating, my body, never feeling enough my whole life. It's been engrained in me from my childhood, and the conversation has been a constant. Never thin enough, never fit enough...even when I was.

So having a sounding board has been super important for me, and Jess is that. She's the perfect balance of a lifestyle coach and nutritionist. She has the knowledge, but also the kindness and ability to dig deeper into WHY you are doing what you're doing. You can read anywhere what to eat, and when, but really digging deep into the reasoning behind why you're doing what you're doing is the most important piece to making a change in your life. 

You can read more about my journey here, and then listen to the podcast episode which goes into detail about my journey with Jessica as my food coach. It's pretty raw.

Importantly one of the biggest takeaways was focusing on cutting back on sugar in my diet. That's been a theme to helping me to really take control of my cravings, of my mood, of my hormone balance, and one of the pillars of Jessica's approach.

In my interview with her, I wanted to really drill down into sugar, and talk about her upcoming sugar cleanse which I will be doing here in November!

You can read about my hormone journey here, body image here, my diet here.

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Who are you? 

I’m a Holistic Health + Wellness Coach and live in the Venice Beach area with my husband (and PIC) Josh! I specialize in working with young overworked professionals, helping them to slow down and find balance in a world that so often forgets what that means. From weight loss to energy levels, positive body-image, hormone balance and overall wellness, I take a holistic approach and believe that all aspects of our lives play a role in how we look and feel. My mission is to help others discover their most blissful selves by making achievable changes that feel good, look good and actually last! In my own life, I stay active by moving my body in whatever way lights me up in the moment— right now that’s yoga, swimming, weight training and riding my sunflower cruiser bike to the Farmer’s Market and the beach! I love exploring my city, finding yummy new restaurants, listening to live music, taking urban hikes with the hubs and going on mini weekend trips to places like Santa Barbara, Paso Robles and Palm Springs! I keep life interesting by staying inquisitive and curious and being open to opportunities the universe dumps in my lap! 

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What made you passionate about health and nutrition? 

Just over a year ago, I took a leap of faith and left my career in marketing to pursue my passions and to help others find their own versions of bliss. For most of my teenage and early adult years I struggled with yo-yo dieting, obsessive thoughts, constant weight fluctuations, and overpowering insecurities. I tried every diet under the sun and learned how to dress my body so as not to draw attention to the areas I considered to be flaws. Fortunately I was raised in a household full of love with healthy habits (you may know my mom Candace from the hormone health episode on Almost 30!) so I’ve always had a solid foundation for how to take care of myself. Even though I had so much support at home, I still found ways to rebel by binge drinking in college, ordering fourth meal on the weekends and learning how to constantly restrict and over-exercise to “make up for it.” After many years living this way and working in careers that not only burnt out my livelihood but also my adrenals, I realized something had to change. I went back to school at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition where I received my health coaching certificate, broke free from diet rules, picked my mom’s brain to learn about my hormones and made a commitment to love myself and my body again. I finally ditched the diet world, and for the first time, understood the meaning of “lifestyle” and I can honestly say, I’ve never been more ME!

What is a sugar cleanse? 

If you google search “sugar cleanse” you will find multiple definitions but they all agree that refined, processed sugars must be kicked to the curb in order to banish cravings, overcome addiction, reduce inflammation and fight obesity. My Sexy Sugar Cleanse is not meant to be a diet but rather a nutritional reset and only lasts 20 days so anyone can do it! You will enjoy an abundance of REAL foods with tons of healthy proteins, fats, veggies (and even dessert) and you will take a break from all added sugar and anything that turns into sugar in the body. It may sound daunting at first but once you get in the groove and start reaping the benefits, you will wonder why you’ve never done it before. And the best part is that there’s no calorie counting or app tracking! I include tons of delicious recipes and swap outs for the foods you crave so you will have plenty of quick, easy meals to look forward to! 

Why would someone need a sugar cleanse? 

Have you ever noticed that when you start the day with a fruit-packed smoothie, cereal or a pastry, you end up craving (or at least thinking about) sugar and carbs almost immediately afterwards? Does the thought of chocolate make you salivate? Do you find that you crash midday and have to hit the Starbucks line for a double shot just to make it through the rest of your day? If you’re nodding YES to any of these questions, you could benefit from a sugar cleanse!

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Recent studies have shown that sugar is more addicting than cocaine and because it’s added to almost everything we touch, it seems  impossible to avoid! When you consume sugar in excess (pasta, bread, grains, fruits, sauces, etc) your body becomes inflamed, your hormones get thrown out of whack, your weight is in constant flux, and your energy levels are all over the place. With a successful sugar cleanse full of delicious hormone balancing foods, daily movement and self-care, you will slowly gain back control of your body and start to feel the way you deserve! 

How long does it last? 

My Sexy Sugar Cleanse includes a 5 Day Prep Phase followed by Phase 1 and Phase 2 which are each 10 days long. In Phase 2 you start to introduce back a few more foods like small amounts of grains, sweet potatoes and higher sugar fruits. At the end of Phase 2 you are guided into the lifestyle phase which is when you will liberate your plate in a way that will continue to support the way you want to feel longterm. In less than three weeks you will likely notice amazing shifts in your cravings, energy levels and even your weigh. That means that between Thanksgiving and Christmas you could go from craving pumpkin pie, mashed potatoes and stuffing to sitting down at Christmas dinner feeling lighter, less dependent on sugar and more present. Who knows, you might even contribute a favorite swap-out like creamy cauliflower mashed potatoes and fool everyone at the table (I’ve done it almost every year)—-and yes, you can still add lots of (grassfed) butter!

What can the affects of addiction to sugar be?

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Sugar addiction is REAL. When you become addicted to sugar, one of the major side effects is constant cravings that drive you crazy. Your body wants the foods that you feed it so when you are constantly overloading it with sugar you will constantly be craving it, thinking about it and even dreaming about it. Someone with a sugar addiction may notice roller-coaster emotions and energy levels (crying for no reason, tired even after sleeping 8 hours, midday crashes) and will likely become irritable if they don’t get their fix. More serious side effects of sugar addiction can include cystic acne, insulin resistance, adrenal fatigue, obesity and eventually diabetes! 

Is it hard to break the addiction? 

Every person will have their own experience “breaking sugar” and some will find it easier than others! If you are used to drinking tons of coffee and eating high carb foods every day, you will need to be prepared for some detox side effects like headaches, mood swings, cravings and lethargy! That being said, there are lots of ways you can bust through the side effects quicker which I include in detail within the cleanse! Just remember that like any addiction, you will face challenges throughout life like holiday parties, cookie trays and vacations but you will have the tools you need to get back on track and enjoy life’s more decadent moments without feeling so out of control. Be kind to yourself, listen to your body and provide it with the love, nutrients and support it deserves! 

Are sugar substitutes good for you? Which kinds are good an which are bad?

Artificial sweeteners like Splenda, Aspartame and Sucralose are highly processed with fake ingredients that trick your brain into thinking it's getting real sugar which spikes insulin (fat storage hormone) and leads to weight gain and endless cravings. If you want a sugar substitute, use plant based organic sweeteners like 100% organic monk fruit or stevia in moderation as they have no known affect on blood sugar levels. That being said, there are many brands that are still highly processed so make sure to read labels! If the ingredients list anything more than just stevia or monk fruit, chances are they have gone through some type of chemical processing making them harder for the digestive tract to process. 

Tell us about your sugar cleanse! 

My Sexy Sugar Cleanse is a labor of love that I am so excited to finally be sharing! It’s a downloadable e-book which comes in both a vegan & vegetarian or meat-eater version and includes everything from meal guidelines, detox and self-care support, sample meal days, food + mood journal, custom Pinterest page, swap out suggestions, shopping guides and more! I worked with an amazing designer @ChloeLeonard to bring my vision to life and to make it easy and fun to follow! I highly suggest teaming up with a friend, family member or co-worker so that you can support one another throughout the cleanse…accountability is everything! I also offer a coaching package which includes the sugar cleanse + three coaching sessions with me to provide you with the extra support you need to kick ass! You get unlimited email and messaging support with this option which is helpful if you need help ordering out at restaurants, navigating the grocery store or just trouble shooting challenges that arise. I will also be offering group coaching classes so that you can take on the cleanse in a team environment so if you’re interested in that option, reach out to me via my website or email. 

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How can we participate?

If you want to kick off the cleanse, simply head on over to the sugar cleanse section of my website HERE and choose the package that’s right for you! You can pay directly on the site and will be able to immediately download the PDF’s. If you opted for the coaching package, you will be connected to my online scheduler so you can book your first session! If you listened to my episode on Almost 30 you can use code ALMOST30 for 50% off the sugar cleanse and ALMOST30NATION for 30% off the sugar cleanse + coaching package! 

Or, you can start the cleanse with me on 12/1! There is a cyber Monday flash sale happening which gives your Sexy Sugar Cleanse for $12 for 24 hours  with promo code CYBERBLISS — an 80% discount! 

Even if you’re not ready to start the cleanse until the new year, get it now and kick it off when you're ready!

Where can we find more about you!?

You can find me at my website www.bodyblissbyjess.com and on Instagram @BodyBlissbyJess & Facebook Facebook.com/BodyBlissbyJessS. I can’t wait to connect! 

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So guys, are you with me? Joining me on the Sugar Cleanse this December? A little nervous to see what in my diet has sugar that I don't know about, ha! 

Excited! 

xo

Krista