One month without sugar

I was going to wait til the end of the month to write this but after standing on the scales this morning I’m too pleased with the results to wait.

On January 2nd I started phasing out processed sugar from my diet after reading the Sweet Poison Quit Plan. I tried it for a week before Christmas and enjoyed the challenge so wanted to take it seriously this year. I cut out breakfast cereals; swapping them for toast, crumpets, eggs and fruit. I gave up the obvious cake, biscuits, chocolates and sweets (candy). I decided however that if on the odd occasion I really wanted something then I could have it but to do my best to stick to crisps and nuts.

Everything else would be checked as I went along. I do eat my main meals quite well, mostly making them from scratch so apart from looking at alternatives to packet sauce mixes but we looked online for alternatives. Sadly most of the cook books on the subject are full of fancy meals with expensive items and as a single parent with a debt management plan and an autistic fussy son that won’t work for me so this is something for us to explore more.

The obvious result is a half stone (7lbs) weight loss in just over 3 weeks which I’m ecstatic with. I never lose on diets themselves and this doesn’t feel like one. It’s the clichéd lifestyle change. I haven’t skimped on any meals. Yesterday I had fried egg and chips for the first time in years. I’ve had a pizza.

Things I’ve noticed. The book mentioned that eventually your body and taste pallet would change to make you not want various sugary foods. I’ve found that despite not taking out ketchup to start with I can’t actually stand the taste already.

The book also mentioned that you would eventually get fed up with (sugar free) diet drinks. I’ve found that I’m going off diet coke but developing a taste for sugar free cherryade. I’m not sure why that would be – whether it’s to do with the sweeteners used? Maybe they are different. My son is doing this along side me and he’s found the same thing.

I’ve not missed anything. I did say to myself if I really fancied something I could have it. I will not ever deprive myself of anything & I found that twice I’ve wanted a bit of chocolate. Pre sugar free I could eat several large bars of chocolate a day without noticing it and still have room for biscuits or cake. I expected to have withdrawal symptoms but haven’t. I had those two bars and realised I didn’t miss it at all. I didn’t like the taste much when I had it and I do wonder if I wasn’t so addicted to sugar before that I didn’t like it then either?

Going forward I want to look at more sugar free recipes, play around with fruit and sugar free snacks (I know there is natural sugar in fruit) and keep up the good habits I’m getting myself into. It’s definitely an interesting journey so far.

2016 has started

2015 went wrong in so many areas and left me reeling in ways I haven’t felt in a very long time. There are multiple posts I’ve written about that. I always knew though that if I could just get to 2016 I could restart my life and I kept the date as a talisman whenever I hit a bad day.

So we are just 10 days in and already my belief is panning out. I’m 10 days into reducing my processed sugar intake. So far I’ve cut out sweets, cake, biscuits and take away food. And haven’t missed any of it which doesn’t happen often! From next month I am going to look at amending recipes we use so that I can cut out the sugar from packet sauce mixes and just cook with natural products.

I am working on the envelope method of budgeting and giving myself a weekly spending budget from what is left after all my bills have been paid. Anything left over after each week goes into a pot to be saved for anything needed (after an eye test yesterday the first thing on the list is a new pair of glasses!). I already have £11. Not the greatest amount but based on past performance I feel like a millionaire. Most of that comes from taking my own sandwiches for lunch, not eating sweets and when I allow myself a cup of tea in a cafe using the cheaper cafes rather than the giants such as Starbucks but also bit having that bun with it. Result? £1 for tea instead of £1.85 and £1 total instead of £4 ish with cake!

Then there is my studying. I adore psychology based courses and am learning to be a life coach and hypnotherapist but last year I took a few spiritual courses and ended up spending more time and money on those than the ones that would benefit me in the long run. And a 2 day certificate would cost the same as a 6 month diploma course. I had a good talk with myself and asked if they would really benefit me as fun as they can be? I want to work for myself and while they may work as an added extra they don’t add to what I want to do.

Si I have cancelled all but one of them as I’ve paid the deposit and it will finish off a course I did last year. Everything else has gone except the psychology based ones. I’ve re-done my business action plan and after doing an hours study today realised that if I push myself to do a bit each day this week I will have finished the reading element of my hypnotherapy course by the 17th Jan and can start looking for volunteers to practise on. I thought I was months away! I am so fired up to completing now.

This forward momentum has also resulted in me booking appointments I’d been forgetful with. I’ve used my voucher for some aromatherap massage (try it, it’s divine!), I’ve had my eyes tested, next week I finally get my boiler inspected. I’ve made an appointment to give blood for the first time in 10 years and finally sorted out a hair cut that is a year overdue! Phew.

It’s amazing what a positive feeling can bring about 🙂