‘It won’t happen over night, but it will happen.’
Quitting sugar was probably harder than quitting smoking. The decision to give up the sweet stuff wasn’t one that I had thought long or hard about but was rather spontaneous. It came about the evening after my son’s birthday when I had indulged in a full day of sugar. I felt horrible and impulsively decided to get off the white-stuff and go cold-turkey. On reflection, I maybe should have gradually eased off it but that isn’t my personality. Go hard or go home!
‘Stay away and don’t even bother speaking to me.’
As I already explained in my previous post ‘Sugar Free Zone‘, my life was extremely eventful during my sugar detox period. Despite my brief research on Google before making my rash decision, the side-effects were more than i had anticipated. My levels of irritability rose like this horribly hot Spring weather and my family had to patiently persevere with my fluctuating mood swings. Also a dull headache seemed to set up shop permanently in my head. And just to top it off, I had the shakes as I my mind floated in a disconnected haze. When I quit smoking many years ago, I felt rubbish for the first few days before things got better. However, for nearly two weeks after quitting sugar I felt horrible without any end in sight. The temptation to give up and indulge in a box of choc-chip cookies was strong but I figured that if my body was this dependent on sugar then it was probably best to not give in.
There is light at the end of the sugarless tunnel.
For some people it can take 4-6 weeks to fully detox from their sugar fix. Personally, despite the occasional headache, I found things became ‘clearer’ after about 2 and a bit weeks. Physically, I felt more energetic as I had replaced the sugary foods with healthier whole foods. The dark circles under my eyes faded and my skin looked healthier. Psychologically, I felt positive, lighter, alert and emotionally calm. The most positive result was that I woke up feeling refreshed and energised. Before giving up sugar, I felt rubbish and needed a massive coffee with 4 to 5 spoons of sugar to feel alive.
It’s not about losing weight but about feeling energised.
There are loads of really good sites that give helpful tips and advice about quitting sugar. My approach is to be diligent but not militant with regards to sugar in my diet. For instant, if I’m at a friend’s birthday party and I’m offered cake then I will eat it. After all, it’s not something I eat everyday and it’s about enjoying the occasion. However, after being sugar-free my tolerance for sugar has changed and I no longer crave it. While I’m not a nutritional expert and this clean-eating thing is still relatively new in my life, the only advice I’m willing to give is to not give into temptation when the side-effects hit. When you do reach the other side, you feel physically and emotionally healthier.
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