Monday, January 12, 2009

No Sugar, No Problem. It's Easy Now

Maybe because the holidaze are over or maybe because it's a new year.....but....I'm over the hump. Going without sugar is no longer what I do--it has become a lifestyle. Friends and family know that I am committed, so there is little pressure anymore. I wondered if it would ever be easy, or second nature to go without. It is so easy now that I feel almost bored with it! I know that this year I won't be wrestling with mental donut demons, or whiffing baked goods with tears in my eyes. When a sugar craving hits me now, it is so minor that I can ignore it or make hot tea with a drop of honey, or eat an apple or a prune. It's insignificant. The holidaze were the climax of my personal research project. I experienced being present with friends and family as they ate desserts and goodies. I came to terms with the fact that just because I am not eating a bowl of ice cream, I am still sharing in the moment.

Several people, by their own choosing (I've never asked someone to go without sugar) have joined me this year in going without sugar. Some are friends, some are strangers. It is an inspiration to me, and an exciting journey ahead for each person. I like that everyone's way of cutting back on or going without sugar looks different. For some, it is avoiding the junk food aisle at the grocery store. For others, it's stocking with kitchen with healthy, naturally sweet items.

When you make one little commitment to healthier living, it often snowballs into other areas of your life.

For me, it played out like this:
1. 2008 New Year's resolution: No white refined sugar
2. Within the first month, I also pledged to myself to include no corn syrups
3. I decided I would AVOID white flour, and do for the most part
4. I began eating less packaged food (this happened by default because most packaged foods contain refined sugars)
5. I bake and cook with healthy ingredients. I don't even consider baking with white flour. I have begun to explore all the varieties of flours out there, thanks to Bob's Red Mill.
6. I have adopted a healthy, regular exercise routine using baby steps. It's not only realistic, but it keeps me wanting more.
7. 2009 became my second year to go without sugar/corn syrups

Good luck to those of you who have made healthy resolutions for 2009, and to the rest of you, thanks for reading!


Joy's Journey in Weightloss said...

I applaud your efforts. I am on this journey too. I went without sugar for months, but realized that I was starting to "use" fruit, agave, natural sweetners etc too much. When I was starting to think this is easy, that is when I got cocky and slipped up. What I am saying is that even though the natural sugars are healthy, your body can still be addicted to them, just like processed sugar.

My Year Without said...

Oh wow, you put that perfectly. I had been "using" natural sweeteners a lot like I was "using" refined sugar. I'm not so sure if it's my body that is addicted to all things sweet, or my brain.

There is so much psychology involved, I think if I were ever to return to graduate school I could easily study the psychological aspects of willpower and cravings for years...

Raleigh Twins said...

You are doing such a great job! Keep it up! As you know my sister and I are trying to cut way back on all sugars as well. It is such a fun and interesting ride to see what the body can do with less sugar. All sugars can be a tricky thing sometimes so I agree - everyone needs to read ingredient labels.

MommaMcCarthy said...

my first grain exporing was with bob's red mill, but i found this site to be much cheaper and have more variety :)

DawnJ said...

I'm so impressed and INSPIRED! THANK YOU for your blog (I just found you today, but, feel like it's RIGHT ON TIME for me and my family!)