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Natural Awakenings Space & Treasure Coast Florida

Kick Your Sugar Craving to the Curb: Tips for Kids & Parents

Nov 03, 2020 10:42AM ● By Ruth Rodriguez, D.O.

Is it difficult to stop reaching for one more cookie? Do you rationalize that second piece of dessert by telling yourself “I’ll just have a small piece” but know you’ll finish the entire pan? This behavior can be a sign of sugar addiction. Sugar is highly addictive. Recent research shows that sugar lights up the same areas in the brain as cocaine and even destroys our brain cells. In children, learning and behavioral issues in school or even increased ADD, ADHD, and spectrum-related issues could be a symptom of a sugar imbalance.

Learning the impact sugar has on our body can help us kick it to the curb. It is highly destructive to our cells and impacts our energy levels. But even busy people can learn to break up with sugar without feeling lost or deprived. Addressing the root issue can end the cravings, increase energy and support overall health.

Avoid the healthy sugar lover trap

Treats like chocolate covered goji berries, “healthy” frosted cereals, and granola bars are still sugar. Sugar creates an acidic environment where cells cannot thrive. Refined sugar depletes the body of its minerals and enzymes and creates an acidic environment leading to digestive problems, sinus congestion, cellulite, headaches, mucus in the stool, and allergies.

Watch for digestive imbalance

Sugar feeds the bad bacteria in your body and throws off the delicate symbiosis in our digestive system. It contributes to issues like acid reflux or candida overgrowth (imbalanced gut bacteria) and robs the body of energy leading to weight gain or extreme weight loss due to malabsorption. Craving sugar is an indicator the body is out of balance. It’s a signal that there are deeper nutritional deficiencies, yet sugar can never fill those gaping holes. 

Symptoms of blood sugar imbalance

Too much glucose in the blood leads to blood sugar imbalances, chronic fatigue, and even diabetes. Consuming refined sugar has a negative impact on blood sugar, which leads to irritability, anxiety, wrinkles, poor sleep, hormonal imbalance and can also lead to more serious health problems. Being over-tired and not finding time for self-care can exacerbate sugar cravings.

Nourish the body instead

Wholesome nourishing foods, plant-based remedies and lifestyle strategies can help redirect the craving to a healthier path. Sugar occurs naturally in nearly all foods. When in its most natural state, for example honey or maple syrup, it contains enzymes, vitamins and minerals.

Reducing sugar consumption can improve a child’s behavior, focus and attention and reduce illnesses and digestive complaints for all ages. Here are some tips to start kicking your sugar craving to the curb and some delicious nutritious recipes to try as a dessert alternative.

·      Strive for a whole food diet

·      Drink plenty of water

·      Exercise

·      Sweat in a sauna or steam bath

·      Omit the big offenders: soda, white bread, sweeteners including corn syrup, and fast food

·      Reduce or remove gluten, choosing sprouted grain breads instead

·      Drink herbal teas, green tea, and fresh pressed vegetable juice

·      Reach for nuts and seeds

·      Incorporate plenty of vegetables (nine servings)

·      Choose seasonal, non-tropical fruits such as apples and berries




2 ripe avocados

1/2 cup almond milk (or non-dairy milk of choice)

3 tablespoons raw honey

2 tablespoons coconut oil

¼ dropper peppermint extract or peppermint essential oil (2 drops)

2 ounces dark chocolate, chopped or shaved

*Peppermint extracts may vary by brand, so be sure to start off with a smaller

amount of extract and adjust to your taste.


Place all ingredients, except the chocolate, into a high-powered blender and

blend until smooth and creamy. Stop and scrape down the blender container,

as necessary until smooth. Mix the chocolate chunks in by hand and place in

the fridge or freezer to chill for at least an hour before indulging.




1 cup cashews

1 cup protein powder

1/4 cup cacao powder, plus extra for dusting

1/8 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons coconut oil

5 tablespoons honey

1/2 cup light coconut milk

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

1/2 cup coconut flakes, plus more for coating


Blend all ingredients, then form into balls and roll in coconut and raw cacao





Makes 2 servings

1 ripe banana, mashed

1 cup dairy-free milk

1/3 cup shredded unsweetened coconut

2 tablespoons chia seeds

½ teaspoon vanilla

½ teaspoon cinnamon


Mix the ingredients. Place ingredients in a sealed container. Shake well. Place in

the refrigerator for 3 to 4 hours or overnight.




Makes 2 servings

1 avocado, mashed

1 tablespoon cocoa powder

2 tablespoons chia seeds

1 cup dairy free milk

1 tablespoon maple syrup or another sweetener (optional)*

*Substitution: Stevia can be used instead of maple syrup

Mix all ingredients together in a blender or food processor until smooth, let sit for

15 minutes in the refrigerator, then serve.


Dr. Ruth Rodriguez, owner of Natural Solutions with Dr Ruth, is a board-certified osteopathic pediatrician with over 25 years of experience using both traditional, western medicine and natural holistic remedies for children. She offers telemedicine-like pediatric consultations and a 6-week Child Health Treatment Program. Learn more or Schedule a complimentary consultation to see if it is right for you.

For more information, visit or find her book at her website and on Amazon. Join her free Facebook group at

Hear more about holistic health for your children in our video podcast interview with Dr. Ruth Rodriquez: Tips to Keep your Children Naturally Healthy.