Dropping sugar and logging my food threw up two main challenges for me.
When dropping sugar, I completely forgot that I can’t do it!
Especially if there’s chocolate in the house.
Dropping sugar for the weekend was not a complete failure. I did manage to avoid it for all of Saturday and most of Sunday. However, I forgot that in the past I’ve only ever had complete success if I wean myself off rather than stop all at once. I knew this about myself, but I forgot. It’s as if there’s a mixture of taste habit and mental habit going on. My mouth feels like something sweet (read: chocolate) and my mind starts dwelling on it (or perhaps it is the other way around). In the past, I have allowed myself something sweet, but it’s been a chocolate milk drink or a chocolatey lolly I can suck for a while: lesser forms of sweet things that help me to move from lots to none. I also should have known that I find it impossible to ignore chocolate in the house, even if it’s just cooking chocolate (which you can melt with cream or butter and make into a chocolate fudge sauce to pour over your ice cream, mmmmmm).
So, lesson learned: I must consult my own experience and remember what I know about myself when making plans for bing healthier.
The first problem spawned the second. Once I’d failed to keep to the no-sugar rule on Sunday night, I became resistant to logging my food and let that part of the weekend go, too. Even though I’d lasted most of the weekend without sugar and it was only one small handful of chocolate, I felt ashamed and as if the whole weekend had been wasted. I still haven’t recorded Sunday’s food and I haven’t logged any food since.
What I wasn’t able to see – what I haven’t been able to see until sitting down now, almost a week later, to reflect and write – is that this was merely another of those small failures on the way to building up strong habits (I’ve been writing a blog post about this). In fact, the weekend was really more of a success. Saturday was the first day for me in over two months where I hadn’t had at least one little naughty and sweet something. I also spent most of Sunday without sugar, too. These are small but very good steps towards my goal of having more healthy eating habits. I need to remember that there really is no reason to be ashamed of not being perfect all weekend, because every effort that I make builds towards my goal. I just need to not get discouraged from continuing to make those efforts!
Sarah Wilson has long been on the no-sugar-of-any-kind-in-any-form bandwagon to combat her personal health problems. As far as I know, I don’t have any reason to cut back on sugar except to be normally healthy, so my aim is really to cut out excess and unneccesary sugar, such as chocolate or cakes or processed and pre-packaged foods that are sneakily high in sugar. However, she wrote in a recent article about quitting sugar that she has found success with replacing the sugar treat with a high-protein treat. As a picky eater, it is harder for me to find non-sugary and non-highly-fatty foods that I feel are yummy enough for “treats”, but I like the idea of trying to feel as if I’m denying myself as little as possible. I like the idea of not eating less or cutting back on treats but just eating differently (and better). It also reminds me once again to refer back to my own experiences of making sure I eat enough to feel satisfied, rather than snacking just enough to stave off feelings of hunger for just a little while.
- Eating Consciously: a Sugarless Saturday (pathofpercussion.wordpress.com)