Sugar? What sugar?

Oh, this whole “eat really healthy and minimally processed and nothing I couldn’t make myself” thing is going to be easier than I thought. Because I’m totally cheating, yet still feeling righteous in my efforts to (eventually) eat better.

I’m going to start calling this the baby steps experiment.

No sugar rule? Well, I licked the knife after making the kids’ PB&J. The jam was cloyingly sweet, though I buy the low-sugar stuff. It felt nice to know that I’m already completely clear of the sugar habit. One day, totally averse to sugar. I don’t need sugar! Who needs sugar? Let’s just…oh my god, coffee tastes horrible without sugar. So I added a teaspoon of agave. That kind of substitution is not going to change my need for sweeteners, so I have to knock it off. Today’s modified rule: no sugar except agave in coffee and sugar added to stuff I lick off knives. Tomorrow’s rule will be no sugar. Maybe.

No bread rule? Dinner included three leftover finger sandwiches for the high tea I made this weekend for my mother-in-law’s birthday. Whole wheat with olive tapenade and cheddar. Because I was hungry and because I’m not going to waste food on a stupid premise that bread might send me onto a slippery slope of processed food. Today’s modified rule: no bread except leftover bread. Tomorrow’s rule will be no bread. Maybe.

No processed foods? Easy. Breakfast was leftover lentil salad and some jicama.  Lunch was peanuts and more salad. Dinner was three leftover finger sandwiches, leftover black beans, leftover brown rice, and cheese. After-fencing snack was peanuts. Clearly, if I have leftovers and easy snacks, there are no pretzel and ice cream binges. But ask me again on a day when we don’t have leftovers.

I don’t feel any better (perhaps because it’s day two and I haven’t actually ditched anything, really), I don’t have more energy, and I’m fiercely grouchy from 4-7pm. Tonight I fixed that by exercising.
Boring. I wanted cocoa instead.

I’ve noted three things in this second day of experimentation:

1. I’m already sick of talking about food.

2. I want candy really freaking badly after 5pm. Ever minute after 5pm. Every second after 5pm. Evening candy is habit and tiredness. If I can be mindful of my tired cravings I might actually change the way I treat my body long-term. Or I have to ban candy from my house.

3. I am hungry most of the day and don’t bother to eat until I’m in the car. That’s why the fistfuls of peanuts the past two days: peanuts are already sitting, waiting, ready, beckoning in the car. I need to keep healthful snacks in the car, and do a better job of sitting down during the day to eat.

So that was day two: cheating on invented rules, realizing I need food to be easy, and rethinking ways to get to bed by 4pm.

Side note: I want cocoa.
I’m going to go to bed instead, but I’m willing to put money on my waking up wanting cocoa.


12 thoughts on “Sugar? What sugar?

  1. Have you tried having a square of dark chocolate (at least 70% cocoa) when you are craving something sweet? I know it’s not completely sugar free, but it has less sugar in it than ‘cheap’ chocolate and because it is dark, you generally don’t eat as much. It’s a baby step if nothing else!

    • I have just the stuff (fair trade, organic, 85%). The truth is, I don’t particularly like chocolate. I like sugar. So while that does stave the cravings a bit, so does fruit. When I eat candy, it’s gummy and fruity and totally devoid of any nutritional benefit. Unlike good chocolate.
      I’m gonna make it through October, but I feel like the cycle of anger/sadness/desperation is really gross considering how healthfully (relatively) I was eating before.

        • They do, and they’ll get lovely treats that I honestly won’t want. I don’t like most of the candy people give out, for I’m picky and snobby. I told my husband if I relieve the kids of an Almond Joy or two, that’s just public service, not sugar.

  2. Laughing at “anything I’ve added sugar to so I can lick the knife…”

    I’m trying to give up wine (new meds no likey the wine) and the result has been a gummi bear addiction :(

    • I will drink for you and you must PLEASE gorge yourself on gummy cola bottles. I miss them so bad I could cry. I want to divorce my husband and marry gummy cola bottles, despite how terrible they are for me. They’re the bad boy in high school we were supposed to want. I didn’t. I wanted the librarian. And gummy cola bottles.

  3. Maybe substitute evening ice cream for candy? It’s dairy, which means protein, which means practically health food. Or, if you don’t like ice cream, how about sherbet? It’s a fruit! Or, if all else fails, finish off your peanuts and then buy a big bag of peanut m&ms. What’s better, starvation or the consumption of a few bowls full of peanut m&ms for the sake of the precious protein buried within? Again, practically health food.

    • You’re hilarious. Hilarious, I tell you. Now, step out from in front of the caramel, because I can’t be held responsible for what happens if you’re in between me and buttery sweets. Brain food, I think caramel has been called by researchers. Something like that.

    • I’m in such a freaking bad mood I can’t even tell you. I actually just threatened murder on Twitter, which puts me on a watch list. (It was nonspecific murder, of anyone who won’t give me sugar right now.) Hopefully, the NSA can see a sugar addict from a mile away and just deliver some freaking toffee without calling in the U.S. Marshals.

    • The reason I’m scared of licking knives is a long, adorable story about grandma and grandpa and grapefruit meringue pie. Sliced my tongue quite well as a kid, so ever sugar seems not worth knife risk.
      But I just note the knife well first, now…

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