I wouldn’t say I have a sweet tooth, as I’m an equal opportunity snacker, enjoy salt and vinegar crisps as much as I enjoy a chocolate bar. But the sweet treats were getting a little out of control, so I decided to axe them. No more pre-brekkie chocolate digestives, handfuls of jelly beans, afternoon chocolate bar, ice cream after dinner… it’s all stopping for a week, eek….
An imperfect start
Okay, so I started on a Tuesday (it was a bank holiday on the Monday), and I hadn’t planned on starting this. I just snapped, when I shoved two marshmallows in my mouth, right after I woke up, before coffee, before anything, and I just thought, this isn’t right. I am addicted to sugar, in a bad way.
So rather than wait for next Monday, or wait until Wednesday, as Tuesday was not a great starting point (having inhaled the marshmallows) I thought the time was now. Who makes these rules that you have to start on a Monday? That you have to be perfect and not slip up. I just decided to start from that point 6:27 am on Tuesday morning after gobbling two sweets. Who makes the rules, I do!
What’s allowed and what’s not
So, seeing as I make the rules, I had some ground rules in my head.
- I wanted to cut out: sweets, Haribo, chocolate, biscuits, lollies, and ice cream
- I was happy to keep having: sweetner in my coffee, jam on my toast, fruit and dried fruit, squash, cola, alcohol, and chewing gum.
The office was a challenge, not because there was the usual spread of sweets and chocolate on the table (it wasn’t there, thank god 🙏). Rather because I am so used to a post lunch chocolate bar. I knew I’d want something sweet, so I bought some dried raisins and cranberries, and they hit the spot.
When I got home from the office, my husband had made a mega batch of rice crispy treats. OMG, pure torture. I stayed away, and had a handful of salt and vinegar peanuts to satisfy my need to snack, washed down with a glass of orange squash.
On day 2 I felt bloated, and hungry, and much to my dismay the scale was going up. I mean, I’m not doing this to lose weight, but this surprised me. Feeling uncomfortable, I kept on going, eating my fruit for pudding, and enjoyed a feisty cherry diet coke, which gave me a real boost.
Day 3, I was working from home. So, the mega batch of rice crispy treats was calling to me, literally… but I held strong and resisted ✋. I found some sugar free chewing gum which helped every time I felt like wrenching open the fridge door and indulging. The bloating had subsided by this point, which I was very thankful for. I decided to steer clear of the scale, no need upsetting myself with a stupid little number for no reason.
Another challenge I faced as picking up the kids from sports camp, and they need a snack on the way home. I had half a bag of jelly beans that I chucked in my bag, which would definitely keep them happy. In fact, it is a miracle that I had half a bag of jelly beans, as previously it would have definitely been scoffed by me without their knowledge. It took a lot of will power not to shove a few in my mouth, but I’m pleased to say I resisted 👌!
On day 5 (Friday) after dinner it would have been prime time for a treat. But I was smart, and popped some grapes in the freezer at lunch time. If you’ve never had frozen grapes, do it now. Such an amazing low calorie treat, that tastes like amazing grape sorbet.
How to freeze your grapes
- Wash them
- Take them off their stalks
- Dry them
- Pop them in a Tupperware container
- Into the freezer
Day 6 was hard, first day of the weekend, and I had to rely on diet coke to pull me through. I thought I’d check back in with the scale, and there were no more pesky increases! I ate a lot of watermelon 🍉🍉🍉 , probably too much, and I felt a bit sick by the evening 🤢.
On Sunday, I slipped up, without even realising it. We were headed to a barbecue and while I was sitting in the car with the kids, waiting for my husband, I spied a bag of Haribo. I gave them each two sweets, and then saw that there was only 2 left in the bag. A smile spread across my face as I popped them in my mouth 🙋♀️. Not until after they were long gone and swallowed, did I smack myself on the forehead 🤦♀️. OMG, I just had two sweets and I didn’t even realise. Ugh… I guess I’m not quite into these new habits yet.
In fact, at the barbecue they had this lovely sweet, sugar fried desert thing, and yes, I also had some of that. I resolved to get back on it the rest of the evening and when we were home, I was back to the frozen grapes.
As another work week rolled around, I was pleased to share my progress (and mistakes) with my colleagues, who were all suitably impressed. The treats on the table at the office were plentiful this week, but I warded them all off with a bag of banana chips to satisfy any cravings.
On Wednesday, I reached another junction, to pastry or not to pastry. As you might note, pastries were not noted for in my rules, and I decided to pastry. I had a workout class that evening and knew I would get home late and not have a dinner, so the pastry was basically a convenient form of carb loading, right?!
Half off the wagon and thoughts about habits
I had one small chocolate egg on Thursday, and a chocolate ice lolly for pudding. My first chocolate since I’d started this whole malarkey. I don’t really mind that I’ve broken the purity of abstaining. I’m right back on it, we’re all aloud to slip-up, and it doesn’t mean I can’t keep on trying.
I read online that it takes 66 days to form a new habit. That seems like such a long and distant amount of time away. I can’t focus on things like that, because they make me feel ugh… 😧 So, I will just try to keep going, one meal at a time.
5 things I’ve learned
- I did have a real sugar problem
- I didn’t lose weight (maybe all the dried fruit? Man, that is calorific!)
- I like fruit and will continue to eat more of it. Before this I would always choose a sweet or treat over an apple, and now I would most likely have the apple.
- If I mess up, that’s okay, keep trying, and don’t write off the day, get right back on it
- Chewing gum is great to satisfy a sweet snacking urge
Have you ever tried to curb your sugar intake? How did you cope? Did you have any withdrawal symptoms?