For the love of sugar! It’s my kryptonite. For some people it’s pasta, others it’s bread, and for my daughter it’s potatoes. My first memory of losing control with sugar was when I was twelve years old. My grandmother bought these mini ice cream sandwiches and stored them in the freezer out in the garage. We were only supposed to have one, but my sister and I would sneak outside and eat I don’t know how many at a time. I would call myself a sugar-aholic. Eating just one piece of sugar is just the beginning. There’s no such thing as eating just one. If I start the day eating sugar, then I’m eating it all day.
Searching for a solution, I came across two trains of thought. Quit sugar completely. Cut it out of your life forever. The other thought was eat it in moderation. If you cut it out completely, then it will become the forbidden fruit and you are more apt to lose it one day and smother yourself in a mountain of chocolate iced cupcakes. My nutritionist had allowed 100 calories of chocolate in my eating plan so that can’t be a bad thing.
A couple of years ago I decided to take the route of quitting sugar altogether and even did it cold turkey. I had already done it with smoking, and caffeine, so why not? If I can’t control myself, then quit it. I had actually read a story a bunch of years back about a lady who was a pasta addict and she decided to quit. I remember thinking, “Oh my goodness. What a horrible idea!” Then I turned the concept on myself but with sugar instead. The horror and shock of such a horrendous idea was too much. I would sometimes think about it over the years and quickly shove the idea away. But, I did do it and was successful at it for a year. The thing I found though was that I had been using sugar to make myself feel better, and as a reward for achieving goals. Now, when I wanted to feel better or reward myself, I became depressed. I had nothing to help me now. I’d even get a cake pop and try to eat it, but found the taste repulsive which made my depression even worse.
I’ve also tried eating sugar in moderation, as my nutritionist had suggested. This worked for a little while, until that big hit came. The one where a co-worker upsets you, or you catch a bad cold and just want comfort food. I lose it every time. I was really sick this week with allergies and had a really bad week with unhealthy choices. It makes it much worse when you are a sugar addict.
Both options have their challenges. Deal with the emotional loss of sugar after quitting cold turkey, or try to find some control and will power to only eat it in moderation. My daughter has been a great inspiration to me. She’s been making a ton of progress with her weight, eating and self control. Growing up with a sugar addict for a mom hasn’t made her transformation easy. So I decided to chat with her and try to come up with a plan. She asked, “What food do you eat for comfort that is not sugary? ” My answer was,”Cheese enchiladas and grilled cheese sandwiches!” Hmmm…not healthy, but a start to finding a solution.
After some inner searching and conversation we came up with this plan. Bring some string cheese to work, which is where I’m usually weak, to deal with the stress and comfort eating. For the sugar, try to eat a healthy sugar. So I’m getting some small oranges and splitting off the wedges. When I want sugar, I’ll eat one of the wedges. I’m also going to try to take a walk if i’m having a really bad struggle When I quit smoking I drank some water when I wanted to smoke. I imagined that with each drink I was cleaning away some of the damage I had done. Want sugar? Then walk.
Which option would work best for you? Quitting cold turkey or eating sugar in moderation?
Until next week!
Eat Well and Prosper!