A few months ago I decided to cut my sugar consumption but now I feel constantly tired and drained. What could I be doing wrong or is this what happens when you cut down on sugar?

There is a huge amount of misinformation regarding sugar. Some advocate the use of honey, maple syrup, agave and fruit sugars. I don’t recommend going this route as your body still sees it as a sugar (glucose and fructose) and reacts in the same way, so it’s only a sideways step.

What can I replace sugar with in my diet? Can I go sugar free and low fat?

In order to eliminate sugar, you need to cut out all processed foods and embrace real food, especially healthy fats. You cannot go sugar free and low fat: it will not work and you will end up feeling dreadful. My advice is to ensure you are eating plenty of healthy fats, such as full-fat yoghurts, avocado, nuts, seeds and oily fish, while avoiding all sugars, including refined fruit sugars (but not whole fruit). The fats fill you up. This low-carb way of eating enables your body to better balance your blood sugar, especially your insulin response, and, ironically, allows your body to burn fat. It’s not eating fat that makes you fat, it’s eating sugar and carbohydrates.

giving up sugar

Do you have any sugar free recipe ideas?

Regarding being tired, most people on a low-carb diet, once settled into it, have lots of energy, so I would look at whether you are getting enough fats. I make creamy pannacotta, cheesecakes, ice cream and chocolates all with a sugar-free, low-fructose recipe – see sarahflower.co.uk for recipes.

Need further help to quit sugar? See Paul McKenna‘s amazing mind trick that really works.