There are so many myths that come along with nutrition. But the biggest one that I see more often than not is that people are scared of fat. Fat doesn’t make you fat, sugar does! Sugar releases dopamine, making us feel really good, fueling our nation-wide addiction which has led to our disease epidemic. Studies show that sugar addiction is more rewarding than drugs like cocaine. Sugar functions similarly to drug addiction in the body (nuts, right?!). Sugar consumption seems to be a major blind spot for most. There are so many myths that come along with nutrition, and many of the biggest ones revolves around sugar.
Have you heard these before? Truth is, there is nothing beneficial about sugar.
Sugar can negatively impact just about every organ and system within the human body. Studies show that sugar is directly linked to: diabetes, fatty liver disease, increased risk of cancer, imbalanced gut bacteria, obesity, asthma, poor eyesight, cognitive issues, depression, anxiety, compromised immune system, heart disease, acne, skin issues and fertility; plus it ages us way faster.
Sugar not only affects our energy levels but it also causes mood swings and makes it hard for us to sleep. One factor that is not addressed very often is that stress and sugar addiction go hand in hand. If your stress hormone (cortisol) is high, it will cause your blood sugar to spike. This further contributes to blood sugar spikes (think about those hanger pains). Hence, this is the reason why you have way more cravings or need something sweet when you are stressed out (myself included). Luckily, there are ways to reduce stress and curb cravings. Can you guess what one of them might be? Increasing healthy fats!
I believe in moderation and having no regrets when indulging because, you know, we’re only human. But, resetting after indulging to get back on track is never a bad idea. Remember that eating sugar makes you crave more sugar! By choosing foods and ingredients with “good sugars” like monk fruit, xylitol and stevia, you can monitor and maintain a healthy blood sugar level. Another great option is organic, raw honey (local to you) in small amounts.
One of my absolute favorites is the Dark Chocolate Collagen Fat Balls (using Pili Nut Butter) from my cookbook. The recipe is packed with high-quality fats, the perfect touch of sweetness from Stevia or Monk Fruit and a touch of keto-friendly dark chocolate drizzle (optional).
Pili Hunters is my go to when looking to add some flavor to my treats. Pili nuts are the perfect keto alternative to the other nut butters and Pili Hunters goes the distance when sourcing the pili nut, offering superior quality products, which is a huge reason they are a personal favorite and one of the best on the market.
A few of my top must-haves from Pili Hunters are the:
- Pili Butter travel packs
- Mini pili nut travel packs (and it even comes with a mini keto chocolate bar!)
- Himalayan salt & coconut oil butter
- Buyo fermented hot sauce
- Turmeric & black pepper pili nuts
Need more recipes to help kick that sugar craving? You can also try my chia pudding! It’s bursting with protein, fiber and omega 3s which help simultaneously reduce inflammation and satisfy you. Or, try my not-so-guilty pleasure, cacao avocado mousse!
Below is a very special recipe from my cookbook that is a staple in my fridge. I pop one in my mouth anytime I feel an urge and I never feel guilty. Check out my book “The Mexican Keto Cookbook” for more recipes that help keep the unhealthy sugar cravings at bay, while integrating productive fats into your diet!
DARK CHOCOLATE COLLAGEN FAT BALLS
MAKES 10 TO 12 BALLS • PREPARATION TIME 1 HOUR 20 MINUTES
15 to 20 drops liquid stevia, or 1 tablespoon monk fruit sugar
½ cup melted coconut butter
⅓ cup melted coconut oil
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup coconut flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ cup creamy almond butter or other nut or seed butter (Pili Nut Butter is one of my favorites or you can try sunflower, tahini, or cashew)
Pinch of kosher salt
½ to 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
4 tablespoons pasture-raised collagen (optional)
Handful of cacao nibs (optional)
Dark chocolate dip
One 8- to 10-ounce 80% or higher chocolate bar, 1 cup sugar-free dark chocolate chips, or 3 to 4 tablespoons cacao powder
1 tablespoon coconut oil
Liquid stevia or monk fruit powder
Coarse salt, chopped nuts, shredded coconut, cayenne pepper, cacao powder
- To make the balls: In a food processor or high-powered blender and working in two batches, combine the stevia, coconut butter, coconut oil, and vanilla extract. Blend into a paste, scraping down the sides as needed.
- Add the coconut flour, cinnamon, almond butter, salt, cayenne, and collagen (if using) to the processor. Add the cacao nibs (if using) and pulse just until well mixed. The texture should feel a little wetter than a cookie dough. Do not overblend. Place the mixture in the fridge for about 10 minutes so that it is less messy when you make the balls.
- Line a large baking sheet or platter with parchment paper. Take the batter out of the fridge. Use a tablespoon to scoop batter into your hand and roll into small balls. To make dipping easier, keep the balls cold until you are ready to dip.
- To make the dark chocolate dip: In a small saucepan, melt the chocolate, coconut oil, and stevia. Stir until it turns into a thick liquid. Do not let it burn.
- Working one at a time, use two spoons to dip the balls into the chocolate mixture, making sure they are evenly coated. After dipping in chocolate, place each ball on the baking sheet and finish with your topping of choice (mine is a sprinkle of salt). Place the baking sheet in the refrigerator for 10 minutes until the chocolate hardens. Store in a container in the refrigerator for 2 weeks or in the freezer (I like them frozen) for 2 months.
“Reprinted from The Mexican Keto Cookbook. Copyright © 2019 by Torie Borrelli. Photographs copyright © 2019 by Eric Wolfinger. Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC."