Why People Eat Sugar: Reasons Why We Crave Sugar

Heather Campbell
 min read

It’s sometimes funny to hear why people eat sugar and which excuses we use to justify putting something in our mouths again…

Why People Eat Sugar Reasons Why We Crave Sugar All Kinds Of DonutsWe seem boundlessly creative when formulating yet another unique excuse for snacking!

However, they’re all stories we tell ourselves to justify doing something we really shouldn’t.

With these stories, we justify ourselves and our behavior as an excuse or a reason why we eat sugar too frequently.

Below, we’ll discuss some of the most common excuses why people eat sugar:

It was on sale: Why people eat sugar

You probably know how it goes. You are in the supermarket and offered a bag of candy or some other product for free or at a significantly reduced price. So why would you refuse that right?

Most people even prefer to take 2 packs because it’s free anyway…

And then, when the sugary product is in the cupboard at home, it would be a shame to throw it away. So you eat it.

In practice, we would rather use our own bodies as a waste container than throw away stuff made of artificial ingredients that don’t serve us at all.

The same goes for Christmas gifts or products almost past their expiration date.

Or with classic offers like two for the price of one…

So consider how it is with you… What happens the moment you see the word “free,” “offer,” or “discounted”?

Can you resist the temptation? Or is your pantry also full of the latest deals?

Buying tips in terms of food on sale

Buy selectively and ask yourself with everything whether you really need it. Whether the food fills you up or whether it nourishes you.

Choose your nutrition based on that. That way, you keep the money for organic food and fun things for relaxation, such as a day at the sauna.

A full pantry is nice, but a well-nourished body and life are even better.

We eat sugar to combat loneliness

A feeling of loneliness and emptiness arises when you are disconnected from yourself, not being true to yourself or the love that lives deep inside you.

It is the feeling that you have to do everything alone and that there is no one to come to your rescue.

Food is often a great comfort in such a situation. If you can eat or occupy yourself with eating, the internal void is filled, and you are freed from that unpleasant, lonely feeling, at least for a little while.

Why people eat sugar: As a form of escapism

Food can be a wonderful escape and a great distraction.

It starts with thinking about what you might eat and how you might prepare the food.

Followed by shopping, preparing the meal, and then eating the meal.

Lonely people often still manage to gulp down all sorts of things they don’t really feel like eating at all (even if they are, in fact, already completely full).

No matter how you look at it, food is often an outlet for people who are lonely. It is a form of distraction and escapism.

By eating, one does everything possible to avoid facing one’s own internal emptiness and sense of loneliness.

But in the end, you just can’t run away from yourself. And just that feeling of emptiness allows you to reconnect with yourself. In this emptiness, you can find yourself again.

The void, in other words, is the door to the connection with the love within yourself. You no longer need food or other distractions when that connection is there.

Then you know that you are good the way you are, are not alone, and are loved.

It’s just the love for yourself that you have lost temporarily. The business world plays on this very skillfully by creating an entire world of happiness, sociability, and love around food and the other products it wants to sell.

In advertising, food is often equated with love. In a society where we all look for love, that is the best marketing concept you can think of.

Boredom makes us eat sugar

Many people drag themselves through the week and are glad when it’s the weekend again. They function as salary slaves, hating their jobs but simply staying in the rat race because they need the pay.

These people do things, but their hearts are not in it. That feeling of dissatisfaction or frustration is compensated by food or other distractions.

If you do not feel like you are contributing to the bigger picture, a sense of futility can set in, and there is a risk that you will then eat out of boredom.

Whereas the moment you really do that which makes your heart sing, you often forget to eat. Then you become so consumed by what you are doing that food (or some other distraction) evolves from the main thing to a secondary item.

You get your satisfaction and happy feeling entirely from yourself at that moment. You are full of who you are and what you do, and you don’t think about food anymore…

It makes you happy, and you often become a nicer person to those around you.

The pursuit of fulfillment is essential

You must strive to get satisfaction and pleasure from your life and avoid boredom.

Are you bored out of your mind and not feeling fulfilled at all? Then you live just to survive. You then do things (such as a job) purely out of fear of losing something (such as salary).

In reality, many are bored with the life they have. They would actually prefer to do something else, but they believe they can’t.

They are afraid of losing what they have and feel trapped in the situation they have created.

And how do you get out of that? Certainly not by consuming an abundance of sugar…

Have you been struggling with your weight and health for years? Have you experienced burnout at work once before? Are you often sluggish and tired? Are you overweight and don’t feel like doing anything? Then you absolutely need to listen to your body!

Consuming sugary foods or drinks is not the solution to feeling better and losing excess weight. Instead, the answer lies in unconditionally choosing what your heart tells you.

Listen to what your body and feelings are telling and whispering to you. If this means that your life would have to change completely, so be it!

Choose change if that is what you feel you need. Later, you will thank yourself for taking the step.

You will feel alive again and be back brimming with energy. You will find it much easier to fight your excess weight and live peacefully with yourself and your life again.

Don’t settle for good enough

Why settle for the consolation prize anymore? You only live once!

Why settle for boredom and drudgery when you are craving fulfillment and adventure?

And why do you actually exhibit this kind of behavior? What are you afraid of in the first place?

Distinguish between being satisfied and being happy!

Being satisfied with what you have is a basic requirement. But it is not enough. Others may tell you: “Just act normal because you’re already special and crazy enough.”

But in reality, being content is the most dangerous thing in the world. Conformity and satisfaction keep you in place; they keep you stationary, while humans are a dynamic species that desire change.

And if you’re not careful, satisfaction can lead you into boredom and drudgery. Sooner or later, that will gnaw anyway, and you might regret not achieving your dreams.

Moreover, this unsatisfied feeling and boredom will take its toll on your health, weight, finances, relationship, and/or other important issues.

Some eat sugar out of sadness

Our sadness goes away when we eat something, preferably something sweet.

We give ourselves sugar or sweets to compensate for the lack of love within ourselves. To avoid feeling pain or sadness for a while, we start eating, drinking, smoking, etc.

Besides providing comfort and momentary but immediate love, sugar, and other pep substances also cause our bodies to tire and can cause mood swings.

When you are tired, you often feel differently about yourself as well. Before you know it, you are caught in a vicious cycle in which you become ever more tired, with all its consequences.

The solution to digesting grief without excessive sugar consumption is simple: Allow yourself to feel your sadness.

Cry, scream, be angry, or whatever. Because grief that is not experienced takes on a life of its own.

Eating or drinking away grief causes it to grow inward and be stored internally in your body cells. Grief can cause all sorts of ailments, stress, illnesses, and pains in your body.

I earned it: Why people eat sugar

Some people regularly deviate briefly from their regular diet plan.

They eat things not in the nutrition plan “because they earned it.”

But what exactly did you earn and why? And why is it necessary at all to earn things before you can have or consume them?

For many people, food still symbolizes punishment and reward.

If we have not earned it, we starve ourselves; if we have, we stuff ourselves.

We either “may” do something or we “may not” do it, an endless and vicious circle.

We worked hard for a week, so we “deserved” to do nothing on the weekend… Which is really just nonsense.

Life is meant to be enjoyed, have fun, and live in abundance.

So we don’t have to work hard to “earn” anything. We don’t need to reward ourselves! The greatest reward we can give ourselves is to take good care of ourselves.

The moment you allow yourself to eat anything you want, there is no need to punish or reward yourself.

Your inner dialogue then changes from “I want it but I’m not allowed it” to “I’m allowed it but I don’t need it.”

This immediately changes the appeal of the forbidden good. You start choosing from the point of self-love, from what you want to give to yourself, from abundance instead of scarcity.

Eating sugar out of habit

Humans are creatures of habit. We find it pleasant and enjoy doing things our way, preferably the way we always do them.

It’s easier because it takes less energy, and we’re sure it’s done right then.

But if you do what you always do, you will get what you’ve always had.

So if you have certain habits that are destructive to your health, you will have to say goodbye to them permanently.

Suppose you don’t do that (or only do it temporarily, like dieting). In that case, over time, you will again get what you’ve always had (often something you don’t want anymore).

Many people also tend to hold on to old habits for fear of something new. They often think:

“Now we know what we have, and if we give this up, then what? What will happen then?”

Habits are often so ingrained in our system that we don’t even notice them anymore.

For example, think about what you have eaten over the last 2 days. Most people really don’t remember that.

Eating has become such a habit that we are often no longer even aware of what we put in our mouths, much less the why behind it.

Education and culture have their impact on sugar consumption

Each country has its own customs, specific culture, and gastronomy.

In some countries, people stick to sandwiches for lunch, while in other countries, they go out for an elaborate lunch.

In some cultures, a birthday is celebrated with 1 pastry per person, while in other countries, they serve several large cakes everyone can taste until you are completely full.

Then there are specific holidays like Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. These are all days when food is the focus.

Or think for a moment about certain habits, like just kicking off the weekend with a nice snack and drink and sitting on a patio.

And when there is something to celebrate, that includes something delicious! Is there a farewell to someone leaving for a foreign country? Then that often includes something delicious!

But is all this actually necessary? Couldn’t we just have a good time without food, too?

Or has food become a substitute for the love and attention we can no longer exchange among ourselves because we are so busy hiding (or stuffing ourselves with food)?

Everything you need is within you. However, it often can’t get out because we cram in work, food, obligations, TV, Internet, and other things that disrupt your internal balance.

But remember that you will never be able to find your love for yourself in food or other things outside of yourself.

So stop searching and stuffing yourself.

You need to create space in which your self-love can express itself. Embrace yourself and your life as you are. Self-love and self-acceptance should really take center stage!

Stress and fatigue make us reach for fast sugars

Stress occurs when you feel you have to do more than you can in your current circumstances.

Stress also arises when you feel that you cannot choose for yourself and that you are at the mercy of the decisions of others.

Things like improper nutrition, boredom, inability to reach your full potential, and staying in a relationship that is not working also create stress.

Our current society is a cause of much frustration and stress for many people. We have to do everything, want everything, and our packed days seem to go by ever faster.

Everything has to be done on time, and there is little time left to just do nothing. Just “being” and sitting quietly, staring without thinking too much… For many, it is very rare these days.

Stress can be addictive

Did you know that you can become addicted to stress?

Stress produces certain substances in the body that can make you feel the sensation of a constant rush. And it is precisely this feeling that can be addictive.

In addition, stress messes up your hormone balance quite a bit, which can cause you to gain weight and significantly disrupt other body functions.

The quality of your sleep will also decrease due to stress, with all its consequences.

Stress makes your heart beat faster and makes you more alert. Because the body is constantly kept in a state of readiness to fight or flee immediately, it needs extra fuel quickly.

As a result, in stressful situations, we often do not take the time to extensively prepare a healthy meal for ourselves. Instead, we snack quickly on something that keeps us going, and that’s it.

As a result of chronic stress, we are often exhausted. And when you are tired, you tend to take in extra fuel, unfortunately mostly in the form of sugars because they provide the body with fast energy.

While the body asks for energy in the form of sleep and relaxation, we give it what makes it even more tired and causes even more stress. Think coffee, nicotine, cola, sugars, or other fillers.

In other words, it is no wonder that the number of people suffering from burnout and chronic fatigue is increasing rapidly.

Sometimes people eat sugar for fear of saying no (due to peer pressure)

In our primal nature, we are actually herd animals. Instinctively, we know that the chances of survival are slim when we are alone.

We need each other and a group to increase our chances of survival. It makes us feel part of a bigger picture, that we are not alone and that we belong.

You are generally not making yourself popular by saying “no” to ice cream, cake, or pastry at a party.

It’s not cool, and more so: it’s actually frowned upon. The host or hostess has done their best, so you must be an ingrate to reject that.

Moreover, a load of comments often comes over you, such as:

  • “But why? You don’t have to watch what you eat, do you? You’re not too fat, are you?”

  • “Do you have to be special again and be different from everyone else?”

  • “Surely one won’t hurt, come on, just take some.”

  • “You don’t know what you’re missing… Tough luck for you!”

  • “Don’t be so unsociable or just go home!”

  • “Just stop your antisocial behavior man/woman!”

Peer pressure is real in terms of sugar consumption

How often do you eat along “because you have to”? How often do you drink sugary alcohol “because you have to”? Because you can’t get out of participating?

Consider, for example, mandatory incentives or dinners for work, weddings, business lunches, birthday parties, anniversaries, New Year’s receptions, farewell parties of colleagues, performances with accompanying reception, and so on.

Even if you don’t want to, sometimes it seems like you just can’t escape eating.

And before you know it, you’re having cake or a meal in front of you that you weren’t expecting.

And this even though you had resolved not to do it this time.

You say “yes” to another and “no” to yourself, and why, really?

Most people enjoy pleasing others and, therefore, put in their best effort to do just that. They do what they think others would like, what they’ve been taught, or what they think is right.

As a result, they well-intentionally impose their own will on the other person instead of asking what they really need. Then they are angry, disappointed, or sad when it turns out that the other person doesn’t feel like it.

Saying yes to yourself sometimes means thinking ahead and planning things for yourself.

And is this selfish? Nay! Only by saying yes to yourself regularly can you also say yes to others now and then.

About Heather Campbell

As a nutritionist, my field of specialization is science-based nutritional advice but more importantly, it is my goal to share capturing and inspiring stories, examples and solutions which can help plus-size individuals overcome their specific difficulties. Read More