Seven days. It’s been seven full days since I’ve consumed any added sugars and I’m not only alive, but I’m alive and well. I’ve realized how easy it is for me to get complacent about the foods I put into my hard working machine of a body. It’s easy to fall off the wagon and a whole heck of a lot harder to get back on which is why finding a happy balance is key. For me that balance is all about a healthy mindset.
Choosing to avoid certain foods that make me like a bag of flaming poo is just that, a choice. I’m not being forced and if I want to eat cookies for dinner every night I can. I will just have to deal with the consequences, which I don’t like. I play the “I’m not going to eat sugar” game all the time, back and forth I go until I find some solid ground. This time however, I’m doing things a bit differently.
Along with avoiding the obvious: cookies, cakes, store bought chocolate, etc, I am also paying attention to the hidden sugars. You know, the ones you find in your store bought salsa and ketchup. Fortunately for me 95% of the food I eat is already in its pure unadulterated form, but my one go to has always been store bought salsa.
Thanks to the abundance of tomatoes my garden has thrown at me, I have been making my own. Nothing beats the flavor of fresh.
I find it powerful to be fully aware and present with what I eat. Distractions aside, and really stopping to savor each ingredient, texture, and flavor. In the past my sugar hiatuses left me like a rabid dog searching for blood, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on sugar. This time, I’m calm, peaceful, and I feel good.
I voraciously tore through that book. I’ve always wanted to use the word voracious in a sentence about books, checking that one off the bucket list. I finished the book in three days, which never happens in my world. I’m usually distracted by other things, probably chocolate. I found the read to be inspirational and comforting.
This is not to say I will NEVEREATADDEDSUGAR again, oh no, you bet your sweet britches that won’t be happening, but I intend to be mindful of my sugar. Avoiding it where it’s not necessary (salsa) and moderating it with simplified treats. Local, homemade, things like that. I owe a lot of my success this last week to bananas and almond butter. I ate an entire Costco tub of almond butter in five days. Five days.
This specific brand of almond butter has given me ZERO troubles and the fats have helped curb my sweet tooth while providing me with sustainable energy. No crashing. I also think what’s made this so easy is knowing that I am honoring my body. Insert awkward hippie dance here. Raw cacao has been helpful too.
What I love most about being fully aware and present with what I’m eating is that food becomes almost spiritual. It’s the foundation for our entire being, and should be treated with respect. We as Americans have become all too comfortable with convenience, but what happened to actually working for our food? Baking our bread at home instead of buying it with ingredients not meant for bread, whipping up cupcakes from scratch instead of staining our fingers with Red#40 and Blue#6.
I’m inspired to not only eat the food I eat, but to be excited about it. Real food makes me feel real good. Also fall, fall makes me feel real good. The pumpkins and colored leaves have come out of storage. That was quite the sentence transition.
Alright, I’m done preaching. Long story short is that I’ve fallen back into my crunchy granola ways and am mindful of my food. Avoiding sugars has also inspired me to avoid things like processed oils. You get out what you put in so fuel yourself with whole foods and I assure you that you’ll notice the difference.
Q: Do you notice when you’ve had too much of a good thing? To be fair, I’ve been having too much fruit so I’m going to start paying attention to that too. I think I need to start a fructose addiction support group. 😉
52 thoughts on “Real Food, Real Good”
Oh boy….I need to get back on the wagon…..
This is such a great post. I got very lax about my sugar consumption over the summer! I am back on track this week, but it’s good to know I’m not alone. I LOVE cauli rice – I made some myself and used it as my filling for stuffed peppers yesterday!
That sounds delicious!
kathy at more coffee, less talky
i cut out sugar and crap long ago and i’ve never felt better!! i love that you did this and feel amazing.
I totally hear you on the no added sugars thing… When I was tested for food sensitivities, cane sugar was one of my top problem ingredients (along with maple syrup and honey), so I’ve been avoiding it for… umm…. since April?? It is SO darn hard to find anything store-bought without sugar! Or the countless other things I’m supposed to avoid. So I really admire how you’ve been able to find a happy balance!! And yes, almond butter has been a savior for me too. Definitely joining you on the 5-day jars. 😉
I don’t know how you do it…baking all those treats and having to limit yourself. You amaze me.
Trust me… There are a LOT of unshed tears going on behind the scenes! 😉
No such thing as too much fruit. Fruit is amazing. Fruit loves you. I have such a sweet tooth, but I have gotten good about cutting out unnecessary added sugars. I think it’s important to find a balance. I had a slice of cake last week that my body just instantly hated, which to me is a sign that I’m not sugar dependent anymore. Also, fall is great, and I’m loving this rain and clouds and cold!
I wish my body agreed with no such thing as too much fruit, alas 8 servings is indeed too much haha.
Whole fruit and refined sugar is not the same. I live off of fruit, but it’s not the only whole food I eat. I avoid added fats, only eating whole fats such as avocados, nuts and seeds. I avoid all oils and eating even too much of the good fats. Too much fat is not a good thing. And by eating a lot of fruit, I don’t crave sugars like baked goods, and when I do have it, it’s not really that good because it’s too sweet. I can notice the difference when I eat refined sugar and fruit. Plus, there are ways to eat baked goods without refined sugars. I like using whole dates instead of sugar. That does the trick for me.
I agree that when I get a good amount of fruit I don’t crave cookies, however for me too much fructose in general backfires. I wish I could live off 8 servings, but I can’t. I’m not knocking fruit, it’s fantastic stuff, but my body does better with less. Most of my baked good use dates or bananas, but I don’t know the meaning of moderation and end up eating too much. Haha. Nuts are my savior.
I understand. There’s a lot of people that way. But food for thought… When you eat too much fat, even good fat, and combine (eat) that with fruit, you won’t feel as good. Some people get the head rush thing from fruit. My husband was the same way as you until he drastically lowered the fat content and now he does really well with fruit. There’s a lot of scientific research and documentation out there that validates that the body is overall better and healthier with a low fat diet. Too much of fat increases insulin resistance. Check out Power Foods for the Brain and http://www.nutritionfacts.org. Power Foods is a great book, and the latter site is an awesome place for info on food and health on a lot of topics.
di @ life of di.
Store bought salsa < homemade salsa! Marty makes the best homemade salsa; it barely lasts because we gobble it up so quickly. I'd say the added sugar in so-called 'healthy' foods was one of the biggest takeaways from the Whole30 last month 🙂
I read that book and, while it was a bit extreme, I loved the experiment and think more people need to read it!
Also – I finished that Costco jar in three days during the Whole 30! AHHHH
Omg Diane you win. Three days…I am dying hahaha. We really are nut butter and sweet tater twins.
Amy @ A Desert Girl
Homemade salsa is the best of the best!! So glad you’re feeling good and watching those sugars. Keep up the great work!
Nicole @ mymorningrun
Great job on making it 7 days!! Doing the whole30 really opened my eyes to the sad reality that sugar is in EVERYTHING! It is so crazy what we considered “food” in this country. I need to get back on the no sugar train after having a dinner this weekend that consisted of creme brulee and wine…oops!! Everything in moderation…
Hey! This was great post! Have you read the book I quit Sugar? It is an 8 week no sugar detox with awesome recipes. Sarah Wilson is the writer you can follow her on Instagram too. I’ve used her book last year to quit sugar. But after reading your post I’m inspired to try to quit again.
I’ve heard of it, but have not read it! I’ll have to check it out, thanks. 🙂
Lindsay @ A Runnaroundd Life
Another blogger wrote a post about “junk in means junk out” in terms of eating crappy then running crappy as a result. So true. Being mindful is so huge and feeling a good difference is the best.
Glad this is working well for you!! I wish I could cut way back on sugar consumption but whenever I try, I feel like I end up crashing- probably from not replacing it with enough real, nutrient-dense foods. I do know it’s supposed to have fantastic effects on your body when you cut most of the added sugars out. For me, it’s a fine line with being too restrictive and also making sure I’m eating a balanced diet. I don’t think I could ever cut it out forever though, no matter how good it made me feel hahaha I love ice cream/cake way too much.
the struggle is REAL!!! if you loved that book that much though I think I may need to check it out! There is so much to be said for homemade anything. It usually tastes 1000% better than what you get in the store. Bread is my nemesis though, we are slowing coming to terms with each other 🙂
Do you. Eat what makes you feel good. Ditch the rest.
I totally agree with food/eating as spiritual. 🙂
Today I ate my first salad in about two years. It was delicious actually! I had been going too hard on some other food and craved the crunchy, high water nature of a salad.
Added sugars…hmm, I do my best. My favorite sweet is bananas. Always the best option for a sweet tooth 🙂
Dannii @ Hungry Healthy Happy
It sounds like you are doing great, and I really need to get on this wagon too!
I totally agree about the hidden sugars, those really start to add up.
A friend of mine has recently started a sugar detox and told me exactly the same. I wish I were more conscious about food and health, I just kinda forget to look after myself when I’m working (which is, like, always). Your post definitely inspired me to try harder!! xxx
An Unrefined Vegan
Oh, so much to comment on here… Kel and I have further tweaked our diet over the past 3 weeks or so due to some not-so-great health news he got. Eliminated: nuts, nut butters (oh, cruel world!), avocados, coconut, most seeds. Refined sugar has long been banned, but we’re also off of other sweeteners and we’ve backed off a bit on the fruit (we also overloaded on fruits, I think). It’s sad, to be sure, but actually not as difficult to avoid these foods as I thought. Bonus, I feel lighter and sugar cravings are gone. Kel reports he feels better, too :-).
My goodness, what a transition! I avoided nuts for a white after realizing peanuts and walnuts gave me some reactions, but slowly started adding back in the almonds and pistachios. I do notice I go overboard though, and then I need to pull back the reigns. I’m sorry to hear you guys got some bummer news, but I’m happy to hear the change in eating is for the better. I do love the healthy fats, but I also think they can be killer! My pants agree.
I’m glad you feel better! I had way too many added sugars (in dessert form) this past weekend, and I felt so sluggish Monday! Finally feeling better 🙂 annnnd LOVE the fall decor. I’m ready but not quite ready for it yet.
Heather @ HeatherRunsFast.com
So proud. So, so proud. That AB jar didn’t know what it was in for! I find eating higher (healthy) fat foods also curbs my sweet tooth. That’s why I like to have nuts in the afternoon at work and a nut butter shot at night… keeps my cravings at bay. Come decorate my house?
Amanda @ .running with spoons.
Fruit and starches are my saviours when I’m trying to cut back on processed sugars… and I’d actually say that starches help even more than fruits. My body thrives on a higher carb diet, so eating a lot of rice, potatoes, oats, and other grains helps keep the cravings at bay.
Anytime I don’t eat allthecarbs in my day, I CRASH. I thrive on carbs too. Yup, yup, yup!
“Bag of flaming poo”…ok, that alone is hilarious, but at first read I thought it said, “Bag of flamingo poo” and I just about fell off my chair laughing!
If I send you an empty container, will you send it back to me full of that delicious looking salsa you have there? :)))
Nut butters are a lifesaver! Haha. For me, I tend to eat lower in sugar during the week due to the nature of my foods and how they are pretty much routine Monday through Friday, but I allow myself flexibility on the weekends to honor my sugary cravings (helllloooo ice cream 😉 )
After a big race where it is almost vital to have the processed stuff, I always go through a phase where I cut all the sugars out too. Inspiring post, thanks lady!
Good on you for going off the sugars again. I know how bad it is for my body too and try not to eat anything with added sugar. It’s kind of easy for me in a way because I am gluten, lactose and egg intolerant so that rules out a lot of easily available foods that are high in sugar. I usually have to take nuts, dates, roasted chick pea and broad bean snacks and choc like 90%cocoa Lindt with me. I have trouble with fructose too which means I have to watch my fruit intake as well. It can be frustrating though as I do like something nice to eat with a hot cuppa. I think that is when I really miss the cookies! I do relax with friends more and also “give in” to the treats occasionally. Best not to feel guilty then though but just carry on and eat the better foods. Those lapses tend to start the food cravings and the other symptoms like lethargy and headaches though. Sigh. Good luck! 🙂
I hear ya, I’m all about balance and LOVE a good sugary treat, but it definitely sparks a trend and I then have to have a mini reset. Perhaps that’s my kind of balance. 😉
Love this I really try to cut back on sugars, and in all reality cutting back on sugars and carbs makes me realize how much real food I could choose to NOT eat it I wasn’t being aware, it’s really true that you are what you eat and it does affect how you feel.
Awesome! I did 5 days completely sugar free a few months ago and it wasn’t quite as hard as I expected. When I started eating sugar again, I was so aware of the effect it has on my body! (Headaches, feeling “foggy.”) Kudos for committing to such a healthful lifestyle!
It’s amazing the side effects we don’t realize are there until the sugar is gone and then reintroduced.
Leslie @ TriathleteTreats
I love The Year of NO Sugar! What a great book!! The one thing that I could not do was eat the “treat” once a month. It takes me a month not to crave the sugar so it would just make it that much harder!!!
I am very conscious of eating real food. I always check ingredients. I like to make my own salsa and marinara sauce so I can avoid any “extra” sugar. I eat enough ice cream that I don’t like to get sugar from other secret sources. 🙂
Nicole @ Foodie Loves Fitness
Amen to that! It’s amazing how much better I feel when I go from indulging for consecutive days to eating a clean, healthy diet full of unprocessed foods. I love that feeling! YUMMMM to almond butter, I actually just pulled a batch of banana almond butter muffins out of the oven and ate one. 🙂
Oh your homemade salsa is so beautiful!!!! I also love your fall decorations. I need to get mine out. I’m so happy for you that you’re doing so well avoiding sugar!!! I relate to everything you said 100%. I love sugar, but feel so much better when I avoid it. 😦 I also LOVE what you said how what you eat becoming spiritual. I definitely feel that as well, but never realized it until you said it!
Rach @ This Italian Family
Yay for no sugar!
Your homemade salsa… oh goodness, yum! I need some of that in my life!
I just might try it! But will have to start small, like a one week trial… not sure I could crack one whole year. Good on you and can’t wait to hear more about how you’re getting on 🙂
Oh gosh, I’m not doing a year. No way. Haha.
Ever since I read “I quit sugar” this is something I want to try BUT (there are always buts and excuses, ehm ehm), I keep thinking that maybe I should wait after I have done all these marathons so my body is not in a shock of lack of sugar when I’m trying to run 42k… so February will be the month of no sugar for me! 🙂
And now I wrote it here I will have to stick to it! Ha!
Too much fruit? There’s no such thing!
Reblogged this on wwwpalfitness.