Thursday, March 24, 2011

Staying Off the Bad Stuff

It's been 19 days that I've been sugar free (pretty well) and I've hit my first hurdle.

I love being sugar free, and feel very good for it. But today has been hard. Today feels like the end of a really long week, although the week is not yet over. There's been a few upsets over the week, but until today the desire to eat sugar hadn't cropped up. I wonder if it may have something to do with the fact that I cooked Fajitas last night, and read the label and found the flavour sachet was 19% sugar. By that stage - the end of a tough day- I decided that I would eat it anyway - there wasn't much else I could eat, and I was hungry. Would that small amount of sugar cause my craving today?

Actually I don't think so. I think my craving is due to a couple of factors:
  1. My habit is to turn to sugar when things get challenging(and they are a trifle challenging today)
  2. I suspect being pre-menstrual may have something to do with it (but I must add that my P.M.S symptoms are very, very reduced and I think it's because I've stayed away from sugar.)
So, although I haven't had to grapple with will-power at all til this point, I see there may be times when will-power might help me out.

I think I also need to think long and hard about weaning my children of the white poison. If our house was mostly sugar-free, there wouldn't be much temptation around.

Today it was chocolate icing that turned my head. I  decided to make a chocolate cake for my son. He lives away from home, and hasn't been doing too well. My husband is going to see him tomorrow, so I thought I'd send a cake with his dad to help cheer him up. Of course the cake needed icing. It was very, very hard  not to lick the bowl clean!

I had bought some chocolate spread that is sweetened with Rice Bran syrup (which is apparently safe for sugarholics), but I really didn't enjoy the texture of it, and it is a bit too chocolately (bitter) for me. I actually felt a bit sick after eating it.

I hope I'll be able to stay on the wagon. I don't want to be that sugar loving zombie again. There are too many benefits of being sugar-free.

The next quest is to get my kids away from sugar. I have thought about using some of the dextrose sweetened recipes from the Sweet Poison Quit Plan book, but as David Gillespie says ,"party foods are for parties", meaning that cakes, biscuits and ice-cream should be for special occasions, so I don't think I should be making cakes for the kids regularly anyway. I need to concentrate on getting them to eat healthy, sugar-free snacks. They always head for stuff that is sweet, and easy - anything pre-packaged appeals to them, whether it is pre-packaged from the supermarket, or packaged in the shape of a cup-cake.

For the longest time I have convinced myself that if the cakes, biscuits and other treats are home-made then they are superior to anything artificially coloured, flavoured and full of trans-fats. I suppose that is true, but, even when they are home-made, they aren't everyday foods. There is still too much sugar, white flour and fat in them.

So that's the quest. I've started by trying to find foods my 2 year old approves of that aren't sweet. I've managed to wean him off store bought yoghurt (in wonderfully convenient "squeezey" packs - a lot less mess! I want some refillable ones - anyone?), but he's not crazy about unsweetened homemade yoghurt.

I'm not buying biscuits and have substituted with rice crackers, which he enjoys with cheese. He likes bread and butter, so I am giving him quality bread. I find that milk helps with the sweet taste, and is satisfying ( for him, and for me).

He's not keen on vegetables and only a few fruits - strawberries and bananas rate highly.

But he is a big fan of meat. So I need to cook some roast chicken, so he can eat that with his bread and butter!

It isn't easy trying to satiate his sweet tooth, but it is worth a try.

I might just re-read the chapter on freeing my kids from sugar...

Any suggestions will be warmly welcomed.


  1. No suggestions I'm afraid - just sitting back in awe, and really interested to see how it pans out for you. I'm afraid I am a committed sugar addict... Love the pic of Charlie - he is so, so cute!

  2. Thanks Susan, he really is a cutie.
    I managed to stay off the sugar, so feeling committed, don't want to undo the good work, but sometimes wonder if I'll ever eat marmalade again?

  3. What a wonderful and honest account. All I can offer is that with time it does get much easier. I am curious to know what the chocolate spread is called and where you bought it. My husband misses Nutella.
    Good luck. Many people sadly give up after 3 weeks and you are almost there!

  4. Well done Angie- I'm at the same stage with quitting sugar (19 days!) I'm at home with one bubba- 13 months. Also finding snacks a bit of a challenge but fortunately we hadn't tried too many sweet snacks before I read Sweet Poison, so I didn't have to wean him off much, just the sultanas, store bought yogurts (weaning myself off those really since I was using them for convenience!) and a fruit stick snack he liked. A friend suggested frozen peas and corn as a snack- her toddler loved them- they taste sweet but are still veg. Depends on how strong his veg aversion is though (mine is also a fruit-lover and vege-avoider). I've used rice cakes and melted cheese on them- just using the sandwich press open melting function if that makes sense. And he's coming around to avocado on bread, which has heaps of fibre. If you love baking, what about experimenting with vege muffins- can use wholemeal flour if you find a good recipe, and I find you can pack a lot of veges (e.g., grated carrot and grated zucchini) in per muffin.