Picture if you will the following: racks of freshly baked treats of varying sizes, flavors and colors. There’s no one around to stop you from eating all of it. It’s just you and those cupcakes, cookies, brownies, etc!
Well, my friends, that is my life. I manage a dessert truck for a little bake shop in Los Angeles. My job is a ton of fun, and I have full, unadulterated access to freshly baked sweets. The picture above is my daily view from my “desk.” The hard part is that I work alone quite a bit, and thus, I have no one there to tell me not to have a brownie for breakfast or to silently judge me while I go for that third cookie. No one is there, and I’m stuck with only my waning self-discipline to be my guide. My relationship with sugar is, well, unhealthy.
So after doing some research on sugar and what it does to the body, it turns out that it causes a host of problems, like cavities and weight gain and losing friends! I kid, but seriously, I might’ve chosen a cookie over taking a shower at one point in the past year. I don’t know why I had to make a choice between the two. Regardless of that, I know I have to cut back because I deserve better, right? I’m a big believer in moderation, but like any other unhealthy relationship, cutting ties completely is the best step for one to heal and move on in life.
So I’ve decided to break up with sugar for a month. I’m calling it “No Sweets May!” What does that include though? Here’s my short list of stuff I’m cutting out for May: Candy, baked goods, soda (diet or otherwise), added refined sugar, CHOCOLATE, etc. I’m not fully ready to tackle the issues of all the added sugar in non-baked items and desserts, but if you’re interested in learning more about that, read this article or just google “hidden sugar.” For now, I’m focusing on kicking the habit of allowing myself a dessert five times a day.
I’m most scared about my withdrawal from chocolate. I’m about 5 days in thus far, and this is longest I’ve gone from chocolate probably since I first tried chocolate back in 1948. If you think that’s a lie, well it is, but this is definitely the longest I’ve gone since I got a job in an office. Offices always have chocolate. How am I doing, you ask? I’m just …(audible sigh)…doin’, man. Sugar withdrawal is known to cause crankiness and sadness, according to a study I’ve done in the past five days since not eating sugar.
So basically, how does one live without chocolate and candy? I guess, you just live, but find other alternatives to satisfy those urges. Here are some things to think about that may help me (or you):
- Make my own salad dressing
- Eat more fruit and vegetables
- Avoid all artificial sweeteners
- Use mashed bananas or applesauce as baking alternatives
- Chew sugar-free gum
- Drink infused water
- Remove temptations. EXAMPLE: I recently bought over 5 bags of Easter candy after Easter because it was on sale and I LOVE JELLYBEANS. So I moved the bags of jellybeans to the top of the pantry. Now every time I’m bored and want to eat something, it’s not the first thing I see. #science
- Take a walk. Apparently getting your body moving is a good trick to get your mind moving on from the idea of sugar. Walks are like hugs from your mom, they cure everything sometimes. #science
- Be prepared with snacks
- Meal plan as much as possible
I’m gonna start with this stuff. I’d love to hear about any other ideas you have, and especially any experiences you might have had in a similar situation. Sadly, I think a breakup from sugar might be better for the long run, not just one month. However, we’re staying open about it, and just going to try and get through this month apart.