A whole week without any sugar. Hard? I have to say that apart from detox symptoms, NO! Well, is it easy? Also NO! Not hard, but not that easy. For some reason, I have an inner commitment at the moment, an inner burning desire to do this. I am sure that this inner fire is the only thing that is keeping me going these past 2 weeks (this is day 16 of the ‘I Quit Sugar’ program but day 7 of absolutely no sugar). Of course, it is getting easier as the days go on but I am just completely 100% committed to this – there is not even a millimetre of room to let myself squeeze out of it.
I should state that this is not the usually state of my personality – i am very relaxed with myself I would say (although once I start something I FINISH IT AT ALL COSTS, Hello Nursing Degree, Hello International Health Masters). But back to food, and more precisely, SUGAR! Previously, I would allow myself to eat almost anything I felt like and although I would hardly ever have soft drinks or fast food, I would have muffins, biscuits, cakes, ice cream…and my raison de vivre was of course chocolate. More often than not, I couldn’t make it through the day without it & the thought of restricting myself and having it once a week was similar to imagining my eyes cut out – even the thought of not having it produced a physical pain & longing so deep inside me that I felt it could never be accomplished.
Lets face it, chocolate was a form of emotional relief for me – when I ate it, it reduced my anxiety, pain and anger.
It sounds oh so sad, but it really was my comforting friend. Anytime I got too stressed, or life was just a little bit too hard, I reached for the chocolate/muffin/Nutella & I would feel better and more able to deal with things. But I also knew it was having a terrible effect on my body. So I did many different things to try and overcome this including meditation, intense therapy groups that go back to childhood, acupuncture (worked but only while I had to drink those disgusting herbs), exercise, hypnosis & self hypnosis, self imposed restrictions, living in India (worked, but because of bad quality of chocolate there & I also realise now that it worked because of the high quantity of natural fats (Ghee) in the Indian diet), Mindful eating courses, willpower, guilt etc. etc.
So, what changed? Well I am not really sure, something just flicked inside me.
- Maybe it was my gorgeous health-freak boyfriend that is super intelligent but also very buff and careful about how much sugar he consumes (hopefully he will read this and I will get brownie points – much needed as he was the one dealing with my detox moods!). I think he has been subconsciously rubbing off on me.
- There have been a few health scares in my family that have led others to be on the no sugar track (to name a few family influences, my mum is vegetarian and allergic to dairy, soy & gluten, limiting her food choices to mostly very health home cooked ones, my brother-in-law had a rare form of cancer and completely revolutionised his diet and beat it, and my brother was a professional surfer who lives and breathes incredibly healthy living).
- My guru natropathy friend Soraya came to analyse my diet and my body composition and I was able to see clearly on paper, & with the added scrutiny of a health professional/friend, what I was actually doing to my body & how badly I needed to change.
- Plus, this all came at the end of a cold winter, when i was already feeling Blah and looking for ways to feel more alive again.
So here I am!