Alison Cullen is a Nutritional Therapist with a special interest in Phytotherapy.
Ali will endeavour to give the best advice based on the information provided. However, it is always advisable to have a face-to-face consultation with a doctor or health care practitioner to obtain a diagnosis of any health matter which is concerning you.
Q I’ve been trying to lose weight and eat less chocolate, but every time I fail. Is there anything I could take to make me eat less sugar?
A There are two reasons for being hooked on chocolate. One is a lack of iron in your diet (making you tired, and sometimes giving you cracks in the corners of your mouth, or making you feel dizzy/light-headed). The other is poor control over your blood sugar. This is very common and can be counteracted with the following treatment plan.
- Make sure that you eat something (even if only a banana or some dried fruit/nuts) every three hours. This will support your blood sugar and make you less likely to reach for refined sugar in the form of chocolate. Fresh and dried fruit are good because they give you relatively swift energy and are sweet. Nuts and seeds are also good snacks, as they are very filling and full of minerals.
- Avoid caffeine (coffee and tea and fizzy drinks like cola), as it pushes up your blood sugar and then lets it crash, which makes you crave chocolate.
- Take a chromium supplement, as chromium is part of the Glucose Tolerance Factor, which makes it easier for the body to keep blood sugar levels balanced. The slimming aid Helix Slim may be helpful as part of a calorie controlled diet.
- If you think that you are possibly low in iron, take a liquid iron tonic for at least two months.
Since having my coil removed, my premenstrual symptoms have been getting progressively worse, with irritability, painful breasts and unbearable cramping. Once my period started I felt drained and tender all over. I teach yoga and want to treat this problem naturally to go with my healthy lifestyle.
Take an extract of Agnus castus for two to three months, to help ease your body back into hormonal balance. You may also want to have some acupuncture, which is a swift way of balancing the whole endocrine system.
At the same time, look at your magnesium levels. Many people suffer from a deficiency as it is used up quickly in stressful situations. A lack of magnesium not only makes you ache and feel the tenderness you describe, but it also makes you more perceptive of pain, which doesn’t help the general situation! Also, just make sure your iron levels are ok, as heavy periods are really draining and many women hover on the cusp of anaemia without realising it.