I have a sweet tooth. Specifically delicious chocolate treats. Ice cream, brownies, cookies, cake, etc. Love it all. I know that if I am going to succeed in my competition prep I will need to conquer and give up sweets. I decided that conquering my sweet tooth earlier rather than later would be better because then I can gradually cut it out, instead of going cold turkey! So I made it my goal to cut out all added sugars.
It is difficult, to say the least. Especially in social situations. I am pretty good about not keeping sweets in the house, but it’s when I am at work or a party and there are options presented that I tend to struggle. I have really had to work at it!
I started out by just limiting the amounts that I had. So making a small container of ice cream (like the personal sized ones like Ben & Jerry’s) last 3 weeks. After a while of slowly limiting the sugars and sweets I had, I started replacing them with natural sweets. Dates, natural chocolate truffles (made with dates/walnuts/cocoa powder,) dried mango, homemade dark chocolate covered almonds, etc.
I did try some sweets again later and boy did that keep me from giving in again! I had gone several weeks without baked goods etc, and had a slice of cake for a coworker’s birthday, and I crashed and burned! I felt extremely lethargic and just miserable! It took me over 24 hours to get it out of my system! That weekend I was at an event and didn’t even have a single dessert, simply because I really didn’t want to experience that again!
This experience has really shown me that sugar is in EVERYTHING!! It’s so hard to avoid, but it feels incredible when you do! I think it is a change I will continue through the rest of my life, though I am not sure exactly how strict I will be. I imagine holidays there will be a little more leniency, but I think finding healthy alternatives are the best route.
I have found that as Americans we tend to add sugar and sodium to absolutely everything. Since cutting sugar out of my diet, some of the treats I used to eat I am now incredibly sensitive to. I can barely eat them because they are WAY too sweet for me! It’s incredible how when you cut things out of your diet how your body adjusts!
I still crave sweets at times, and to curb my sweet tooth I keep medjool dates in the fridge, low-sugar dried mango in the pantry, dark chocolate almonds in the freezer, and honey in the cupboard. (I also keep high quality 85% dark chocolate in my coworker’s desk! I have that sparingly and have to ask her for permission to have a square, which she can deny!) These simple changes to what is in our home have helped wonders in meeting that craving while keeping my diet clean.
Have you tried cutting out sugar? What have you done to curb your sweet tooth?