Tuesday, November 13, 2012

no-sugar wrap up

at the bakery at the bakery at the bakery

My no-sugar experiment is winding down, so I thought I'd post some thoughts on it (which maybe helpful for me to look back on in the future). Do you mind if I simply write in bullet points tonight? I'm tired.

:: first of all, my weight.  I was thrilled to step on the scale this morning at 136.7.  My starting weight was 142, so I'm down 5 pounds, just as I had hoped.  The weight thing was the huge motivator in all of this, so I'm happy to report that giving up sugar did help me drop some weight without having to be too terribly "diety" in other regards.

:: I found that I am very emotionally attached to food as a comfort and de-stressor.  For a lot of the experiment I found that I wasn't "craving" sweets per se--rather, I just felt kind of "flat."  I missed the comfort of sugar and desserts!  I wish I could think of another comfort.  I wish I liked walking or exercise or something.

:: I was so happy to find that my palatte adjusted super quickly to really enjoy less sweet things that suddenly tasted super delicious to me like bananas, natural peanut butter, dried fruits (dates were a big lifesaver), fruit smoothies, and later I allowed myself some minimally sweet goodies like the whole wheat raisin scones and a biscotti.  I love the feeling of not eating sweets and then getting a treat like the scone or biscotti and it tastes amazingly good and satisfying, and without the guilt or feeling "gross" like eating a decadent dessert can make you feel.

:: I did eat a couple of real desserts twice--once on Rainer's birthday and once at a nurses' meeting where one of the nurses brought a delicious homemade apple crisp.  The "regular" sweets almost tasted too sweet for me.

I'd love to keep eating this way with avoiding most desserts and just having minimally sweet treats occasionally.  It's just a matter of having the self discipline to keep it going (I'm not that great at self-discipline).  Of course, a really sweet treat is in order for special holidays and birthdays.  I'll always want to participate in dessert on those occasions.

I'd say I have a natural sweet tooth so this will always be a work in progress for me.  I'd love to hear your insights!

PS--the photos above are from our local bakery last weekend.


Andrea said...

Mary Beth--congratulations on making it! I have given up sugar for a couple of months at a time two or three times in the past. Sometimes it has helped me lose weight, sometimes not. I always find that the first few days are the hardest, with a lot of craving of sweets (a spoonful of honey usually takes care of that), and after that, I almost don't even care about sweets at all. But I always end the fast with a big sugar binge (like a holiday) and then it's all over. I can't seem to moderate; it's all or nothing. And I, too, turn to sugar as a way of coping/comfort in times of stress, which has been my ongoing condition for the last couple of years. I'd like to try to give up sugar for a longer period of time (I'm impressed with Ken's year!) and/or figure out a way I can take it or leave it--say no to the gorgeous chocolate cupcakes. Mainly I try to keep desserts out of the house and stay away from bakeries.

MamaJewel said...

I have a huge sweet tooth and as I mentioned before have thought the way to curb this is to give up sweets. Something that has helped me on occasion is the idea that whenever I eat sugar\sweets to excess I seem to get sick with a cold or flu. Our naturopath told me that sugar weakens the immune system so it is best to avoid it. I don't know but I thought this may be helpful to your willpower issue. :-)