Grief is an inevitable part of life. It would be impossible to remain joyful and happy through every experience that humans are exposed to in a lifetime. The process of learning how to cope with grief and the stress of moving forward is essential to survival.

In many cases, sugar can be an extremely easy route to take when we are grieving. Unlike alcohol and drugs, using sugar to cope is abundantly available and socially acceptable. It feels like a natural step to use sugar in order to cope and no one will question you if that is your way of coping.

If you are experiencing grief for any number of reasons, it can be extremely easy to “just one” it into a full blown sugar problem. Grief can come in many different forms and we all experience it and deal with it in our own unique ways.

Turning to sugar can seem both harmless and helpful and sometimes it may be necessary to allow yourself that sweetness in the short term, but a continued habit will only prolong your grief.

When you know you are grieving, consider taking these steps to help you through the process:

  1. If you feel like something sweet – try fruit first.

Eating something sweet can provide us comfort in difficult times. The key to not going overboard, however, is to upgrade the items you use to cope. Try a fresh seasonal piece of fruit as a source of sweetness. If this won’t do it for you then allow yourself to enjoy the sweetness of a homemade treat. Rather than going out and buying a highly processed package of peanut butter cups, make your own and allow yourself to enjoy and indulge in that sweetness. It is important to recognize that in the long run, turning to sweets to cope with grief will no longer serve you. Allow yourself the sweetness but don’t let it determine your grieving process.

  1.  Get out in nature

It is natural to want to remain sedentary when you are grieving. Cozying up on the couch or lying in bed can seem more comforting than heading out for a walk. Just like the sugar piece, you can absolutely allow yourself those moments. The key is to know that getting up and getting your body moving after is essential to moving through the grieving process.

  1. Don’t judge yourself

Everyone moves through the grieving process at different paces and in different ways. Don’t let anyone tell you that you aren’t grieving properly and remember that you might do and feel some weird things during the grieving process. Allow yourself to have these thoughts and work through them. It is important to let your body and mind move through the process and grieve in your own way.

Grief and pain is inevitable in this life, but suffering is an option. If you are using sugar heavily to cope with grief, then suffering is likely. Do what you need to do to move through the grief and then shorten the time and intensity of your recovery by getting off of sugar.