Sugary Things

I’ve been pretty stressed out today, and while it hasn’t completely passed, I know that I’ll get through it.  I’m not turning to food to comfort me, which feels like a win. I’m sticking to my no doughnuts/macchiatos plan, but there’s still so much that I need to change. When I think of everything that I need to be doing differently, I get overwhelmed. I’m still not ready to look at the big picture, but I’m ready to add another layer to my checklist.

Saying NO to those sweet things is great, but I need to be sure that I’m not replacing them with other sweet things. I’m still at Starbucks regularly, but I’m “indulging” in unsweetened passion tea. It has no calories, and it’s pretty to look at while I work. I can have free refills too (thanks to my gold card status) so it’s a win. I don’t miss the macchiatos most of the time.

I haven’t missed the doughnuts either (probably because I reached the point of total disgust a few weeks ago,) but I have to be careful with other sweet things. Sugar is my weakness. I know that I need to make some adjustments in the way that I consume sugary junk.  I know some people who quit sugar cold turkey, but I’m not that strong. I can’t even think about how hard it would be to enjoy life without sugar at any time. I’m sure some of you are strong enough to do that. I’m not.

I met someone recently who only eats dessert on the weekend. That seems like good plan.   Refraining from sweets during the week (desserts, random offerings of chocolate covered gummy bears, etc.) would greatly impact that way that I consume sugar. I know someone else who eats well all week and allows himself to eat whatever he wants to eat on Saturdays.

I’m not ready to say that I will not eat anything sweet ever again, but I might be willing to refrain from it on the weekdays. If I can manage to do that without going crazy on the weekend, then I’ll consider that a win.

If I want sugary things during the week, I’ll have fruit. I love honey crisp apples.  I keep them stocked in the fall.  I realize that they contain sugar, but let’s be honest. I don’t have hundreds of pounds to lose because of all of the fruit I eat.

I did some walking with girlfriends over the weekend, and I was reminded how awesome and easy it is to enjoy my surroundings.

IMG_3955

I live in a beautiful neighborhood that people come to see from all over the world. I just need to start taking advantage of that more than I have been lately. I have access to a gym with a nice view as well. I’m not sure why I allowed myself to forget all of the awesome tools and experiences that are right under my nose.

Canal St. New Orleans

I’m committed to making some positive changes in the coming weeks and months, and it feels good to be making positive progress now.  I’ll face the numbers on the scale later, but for now, I think that if I limit sweet treats even more and exercise more regularly, I’ll be doing enough to see a positive shift.  I’ve already felt one of in my attitude, and that feels a lot better than what I was feeling until a few weeks ago.

Do you have any tips or tricks for avoiding sweets and/or replacing them with healthier alternatives?

 

 

 

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12 Comments

  • Reply
    Heather
    October 14, 2014 at 8:53 am

    I don’t really have an issue with sweets but more like fatty foods. I started using my fitness pal again to track and if I want that wine i have to hit the gym. Otherwise no room in the food budget. I also like Chike protein coffee w/skim. Takes the edge off. As long as junk isn’t in the house I won’t eat it.

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  • Reply
    Melissa
    October 14, 2014 at 9:26 am

    Sweets are totally my downfall too! I’m working on focusing on clean eating this week, and that doesn’t included added sugars. Yesterday was the first day of my 5 day challenge, and I did pretty well! I had fruit, which satisfied my sweet tooth, and I wasn’t hungry. I’m hoping after 5 days I’ll be so impressed with my progress that I won’t want to go back. The last time I did this, I had great results, but over time I allowed sweets to creep back in. At this point I eat a lot less sugar than I did at this time last year, but I still have room for progess! 🙂

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  • Reply
    Betty Adams
    October 14, 2014 at 9:59 am

    I know that no one likes to hear this, but I was the same as you. I have always had a weight problem, mostly due to sweets. I tried every died in the world, and I found WW to be the best, except for the fact that having just a little bit of sugar always led to more. I loved the fact that nothing was off limits. The problem with me was sugar had to be, off limits to me if I was to stop craving it. I take a food supplement now, not trying to sell it just saying it is loaded with things my body needs. I have only had sugar 2 times in almost 10 months. Once when I lost my only child four months ago and I had not eaten much, a friend insisted. I was not tempted to continue eating junk. Another time when my grandson was born, it kinda sent me over the edge and I didn’t eat good for a few days, so I ate a few bites of desert. I have no cravings for sweets now, and I struggled for more years than you have lived. Just wanted to share, that there is hope, there is a way to not eat bread, sugar, pasta and white rice. Maybe because I lost my son to addiction of a different kind I see it differently, or maybe not. I changed my eating habits before his sudden death, so I think that was probably not the case. I am sharing this because I always said the same thing, no way could I give up sweets, but I did. 🙂

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  • Reply
    Molly
    October 14, 2014 at 12:07 pm

    You have been and continue to be an amazing source of encouragement and inspiration to me dear Kenlie! Honest to goodness though, the way you get into my head and put my exact same thoughts on your blog is pretty weird 🙂 Haha! (((HUGS))) my sister in so many ways!

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  • Reply
    emily
    October 14, 2014 at 4:29 pm

    I have difficulty with the idea of forbidden foods/beverages. What I”ve done the past few years is learn how various foods and beverages affect my body, emotions, etc. For instance, I don’t have sugar during the day while at work for meals or snacks because I know that within 90 minutes I’ll experience a sugar crash that will most likelly have me irritable and in tears. So to avoid unnecessary tears, I choose to not have sugar during the day. And if I do have a sugary item, I know that I will pay the price for it.

    I would have sugar on the weekends, but found that if I do and don’t work out to work off the sugar within 24 hours, the next morning I”ll be up a pound or two. And worse for me, I get uncomfortable in my body. I have 75 pounds to lose, and if I go up even five pounds higher than I am now, I feel really uncomfortable. So I remember that uncomfortable feeling when I am faced with sugar on the weekends.

    I recently had a food that I forgot upsets my stomach and makes me feel a bit jumpy – especially when trying to sleep. I’d done so well avoiding that food, but had forgotten. I remember it now because I spent 1/2 a night (I have insomnia a lot anyway so I can’t afford to miss sleep) uneasy and jumping up to use the bathroom during the night – then driving to get a medicine at an all night pharmacy – just to calm my stomach down.

    Another thing for me with sugar is that if I eat something sugary, it messes with my hunger and I don’t feel true hunger – just a hunger that happens during the sugar crash. On days I don’t consume sugar, my stomach actually growls with hunger before a meal and that makes me smile. It means I was successful in choosing non-sugary foods and beverages.

    And I’m someone who spent 18 years drinking lots of sugary Cokes every single day. And now I have a soda once or twice a year. It’s the thought of the consequences that keeps me from consuming it.

    I have other tricks I use too: like wanting to clear my plate. One day when I was eating some home baked crinkly fries, I put some more on my plate to eat, and I had this image in my head of “what if we had unlimited foods all the time?” If the fries on my plate always replenished themselves so that there was a neverending supply of fries, I couldn’t rely on a clean plate to tell me when I was finished eating. I’d have to rely on my own abilities to discern when I am full or not.

    Since I realized that, I have rarely ever finished anything on my plate. Must be subconscious. I now often give away the food that’s left on my plate to whomever I’m dining with (if they’re close family or friends). Most people are happy to eat the rest of my fries or garlic bread or whatever.

    As for the insomnia (thanks for letting me write a novel here), I had insomnia for a year, then started sleeping again. When I analyzed it, I realized I slept better when two things happened: if I had protein + veggie + carb at dinner (like rice, or a teeny bit of pasta), AND if I’ve worked out that day ((even a 15 minute walk). That works for me like a magic formula. (nothing’s magic, of course).

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  • Reply
    Hailey
    October 14, 2014 at 5:10 pm

    When I was diagnosed with thyroid cancer last November, I had no choice but to eliminate gluten, sugar, and grains cold turkey. It was really, really difficult at first because I was SO HUNGRY all the time and there was only a very limited amount of things I felt like I could have while I was learning what I really could have. But for the couple of months before my surgery where I couldn’t have any sugar, this amazing change in my taste buds happened because by not having it, I didn’t really want it anymore.
    It has been almost a year since I had to start this new way of eating, but even now I can’t handle too much of a sugary thing. Stuff is just too sweet to me anymore. I only have black coffee now because I don’t like the sweet taste of anything else in it. So my point is, once you are at a point where you can quit it for a while, it will be a lot easier not to want it. I still have cravings every once in a while, but I can only handle so much and then I just don’t want it.
    And it is perfectly reasonable and acceptable to gradually add things to your list of stuff you want to cut out. I know the feeling of beating yourself up for not doing it ALL right now, but you really don’t need or deserve that stress. Just keep going in the direction you want to go in and applaud yourself for that. Be kind to yourself. It makes making changes that much easier.

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    • Reply
      emily
      October 14, 2014 at 5:18 pm

      well said 🙂

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  • Reply
    Michele
    October 14, 2014 at 7:54 pm

    Once you detox from sugar you should be just fine. It’s not the naturally occurring sugars in fruits and vegetables that you should worry about. You’re right, no one became obese by eating too many apples or too many sugar snap peas. It’s the added sugars in the processed foods in the US which are the worst and the most pervasive. It’s been found that sugar engages the same pleasure centers in our brains as cocaine and heroin. The AMA recommends no more than 6 tsps (24g) of added sugar per day and, to be quite honest, most days I don’t even get there. At this point it doesn’t even bother me to sit at a table with others who are enjoying dessert. Sugar doesn’t control me any more. I’ve also decided there will be a few days a year when I don’t pay attention to my sugar intake, those would be the holidays I spend with my family and when those foods from my childhood that I don’t have the rest of the year are being served, and my birthday.

    The reason I’m a fan of the cold turkey detox is because of what I call the bandaid principle. When you take a bandaid off slowly it pulls on each and every hair individually and prolongs the pain, when you just rip it right off it pulls the hairs nearly simultaneously and the pain subsides much more quickly. Incidentally, I’ve also found that this principle applies when it comes to breaking up with significant others as well.

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  • Reply
    Diana
    October 14, 2014 at 8:47 pm

    I used to consume a lot of sugar, especially when I was bored, lonely, angry or fearful. There is only one thing that works for me. Complete avoidance. Sugar is a very addictive substance for many people. The amazing thing was that once I had completely avoided sugar and gluten for a short period of time, I stopped having ANY cravings. Fruit completely satisfies me. I will never go back. Sugar destroys your health – Type 2 Diabetes, Fatty Liver, Obesity, Coronary Artery Disease to name a few. Not to mention what it does to your complexion. Everyone is different, but portion control of this very addictive substance did not work for me. I feel so free now because I no longer have the urge to drown myself in it when I’ve had a bad day.

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  • Reply
    Meredith
    October 16, 2014 at 3:07 pm

    There are some good comments here. Personally, I have to be really, really careful with sugar. I was refraining for a couple of months with the exception of one modest piece of pie a couple of times when I had made the pie for a special occasion . It felt great – I was in control and I wasn’t getting cravings to feed the sugar monster in the middle of the afternoon during the week. This past weekend, though, I had a couple of events with a lot of dessert and I went too far overboard. And this week, I’m fighting those cravings and struggling – it even makes me want to compulsively eat non-sweet things. So the lesson for me is that when it comes to sweets, though banning them does not work psychologically for me, I need to really reign it in. Like maybe a modest portion of something every other week. I’m getting myself back on track now, and putting sweets on a very short leash is a principal part of that.

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    • Reply
      emily
      October 16, 2014 at 3:36 pm

      These comments have been thought provoking. I too struggle with wanting sugary things… and haven’t fully figured it out yet. I know it’s partially emotional – with the ending of a long, difficult day having me just wanting something sweet. I don’t keep sugary things at home..but have sometimes kept ice cream or chocolate in the apartment and ignored it for weeks. So I don’t know why I can ignore it sometimes and other times consume it. I do http://www.t-tapp.com workouts and she recommends a food plan that is three days on of “God made foods” (all natural foods) and a day or two of “man made foods”. the founder is in amazing shape yet keeps m&ms in her office and indulges in real coke on “man made days”… saying you really shouldn’t deny yourself more than three or four days. I may try her method. it’s hard for me not to eat man made foods though (like pasta).. More ramblings as I try to figure out what hold sugar has on me. anyone figure it out yet?

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      • Reply
        Michele
        October 16, 2014 at 5:16 pm

        I absolutely know the hold sugar has on people. It is an addictive substance on par with cocaine and heroin. I’ve seen otherwise mature professional adult practically come to tears when it’s been suggested they give up sugar. This is why I detoxed and am extraordinarily careful about the sugar I put in my body. No more than the AMA recommended 6 teaspoons (24 grams) per day. This doesn’t trigger the binges that higher amounts do. The processed food companies in the US spend lots of money every year trying to figure out how to make their products more addictive to consumers to increase market share and without regard to health. And the federal government allows them to do this. A good book to read is Salt Sugar Fat (or some mixture of those words) and a great documentary to watch is Fed Up.

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