The Reasoning Behind My Sugar Detox
Deciding to go on a sugar detox was not at all easy, but looking back it was one of the best decisions I have ever made.
I have always loved desserts and I still drool at the mention of ice cream. Baking was one of my favorite hobbies for a very long time and I never really paid much attention to the sugar content of the things I were whipping up and scarfing down. I wouldn’t say I was a sugar addict, but I knew that my relationship with sweets wasn’t the healthiest.
Now that I had two beautiful babies I realized that I needed to be the strongest version of myself if I wanted to be there to watch them grow and thrive. I was seeing people my age getting sick and passing away and this scared me. I used to think disease and death were out of my control, but the decision to start my sugar detox came about when I realized that I had the ability to steer my health in the right direction. I may not be able to protect myself completely, however if something were to happen to me I knew I wouldn’t be able to live with myself if I hadn’t done everything in my power to prevent it from happening.
The Elements of My Sugar Detox
My sugar detox lasted 21-days. Many people claim that new habits are formed by doing the same thing everyday for three weeks, so I decided to use this timeline for my challenge. At first, the length of the detox seemed daunting, however I was able to recruit Nic, family and friends to join me in this adventure, which made the process more fun and exciting.
For the actual detox I followed the food list from the 21-Day Sugar Detox by Diane Sanfilippo. I didn’t purchase the program, but found the list that Diane provides to be a helpful and useful guide. A copy of the list can be found here. Many people in the my detox group complained about the fact that fruits were extremely limited. I am a huge fan of fruit and was also sad about not having them, however I knew that in order to rebalance my blood sugar I had to give them up for three weeks. The only exceptions were green apples and green bananas which I limited to one per day.
The first week of the detox was hard. I really didn’t know what I could eat that didn’t include sugar. I woke up in a sweat after the first night and had the shakes which seriously made me question whether I was doing the right thing, especially because I was still breastfeeding. I decided to stick with the detox, but realized that I needed to eat much more. I scoured Pinterest for sugar-free recipes and read Sarah Wilson’s I Quit Sugar book for more food ideas.
After the first week things got much easier. The fact that Nic was participating in the detox made the process so much more fun and we would get excited over new meals we created that didn’t include sugar. Below are some of our creations which include, tons of fresh and roasted veggies, homemade tomato basil soup, and dijon parsley steak.
Results of the Detox
I am not exaggerating when I say that the sugar detox changed my life completely. Once the detox ended Nic and I knew we would never go back to our old ways of eating again. We still have our share of treats here and there but we try to keep these few and far between. This is the healthiest both of us have felt in a long time.
The following are five additional results I achieved through the detox:
1. I Started Eliminating/Decreasing Other Types of Food in my Diet
Once I completed the sugar detox, I realized that although it seemed challenging at first, it wasn’t nearly as challenging as I had thought. At the conclusion of the detox I decided to explore eating a more vegetable-based diet and started to decrease the amount of meat and dairy I was consuming. I don’t call myself a vegan because I still eat meat and dairy on occasion, but at home we now eat an almost vegan diet.
Anyone who knows me personally and the way I used to eat would find this unbelieveable. I continually myself who am I turning into. However, this new diet feels right and my body is responding positively, so I can’t argue with that.
2. I Began “Grocery” Shopping at the Farmer’s Market
If you rarely or have never shopped for fresh fruit and vegatables at your local farmers’ market I strongly urge you to do so. During the detox I began shopping at the farmers’ market every week and continued doing so in the following months. I learned what food was supposed to taste like and it beats anything you can find at the grocery store.
I strive to purchase 70-80% of our food from the farmers’ market and then I supplement the rest of our groceries from the grocery store. This was no problem in California where food can grow all year long, however now that we are moving to the midwest it will be interesting to figure out how to get the best produce during the winter. If anyone has any tips I would love to hear them in the comments.
3. I Lost Weight
I completed the detox in order to be healthier, however I also received a smaller waistline as a result. After having Kuya I didn’t fit into my pre-pregnancy pants when I had to return to work. It was discouraging and also meant I had to buy some new clothes.
After the detox, not only did I return to my pre-pregnancy size before going back to work, but a lot of the pants I had that were somewhat snug on me pre-pregnancy now fit perfect. I felt like I had gone on a shopping spree and the best part was that I didn’t need to spend any money.
4. I Have Become More Aware of the Other Areas of My Life
If you read my last post, you already know that as a result of my sugar detox I became more aware of what I was putting into other areas of my life. This includes how I spend my time, what I do with my money, who I choose to surround myself with and even the things I read and listen to.
It’s amazing how the detox had a snowball effect in bringing positivity to other areas of my life. I have just started some of the changes in these other areas, but I have not felt more optimistic about my future and the future of my family than I do now.
5. My Kids are Changing
I feel bad that I hadn’t become completely health conscious until this year. That means that Kuya grew up on boxed cereals, pizza and everything else the typical American kid eats. Before our detox he would not eat anything green. I vowed after the detox to continue introducing healthy food to him even if he wouldn’t eat it. It’s amazing that this little boy who once despised anything green will now eat a few pieces of lettuce or what he likes to call leaves.
Prior to the sugar detox I had always added honey or syrup to Kuya’s morning oatmeal. I thought that he wouldn’t eat it otherwise. However, I stopped adding the extra sweetener and now only throw in fresh fruit. It was such an eye-opener when he would eat up the oatmeal just like he had before. He didn’t need the extra sweetness and it made me question why I had even put it in to begin with.
We still have a long way to go with Kuya, however he has come a long way which makes me so proud. If you have a picky eater I would strongly urge you to never give up. The health of your child is worth all of the frustration you may experience.