Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Sugar Detox: Week 4

We have had a lot going on in our lives lately, so it seems we have gotten a little off-track on the sugar detox. I can't really call week 4 (phasing out all refined white sugar) complete, but it is definitely in progress and moving in the right direction.

Between health issues, carting kids to and from Virginia to visit with grandparents, and our upcoming move, I believe some of these detox challenges are going to be a progressive work over time. So here is the current status:

  1. We no longer have ANY high fructose corn syrup in our house! 
  2. We are only purchasing whole grains, except for pasta. We are still searching for a pasta alternative that we all like.
  3. We have cut out MOST sweets and desserts. I doubt we will ever completely cut out all sweets and desserts-this is a lifestyle change for us, not a short-term "diet plan". We have cut back significantly and are more selective about what is in the sweet treats we allow into our home.
  4. I have personally cut out all soda. We no longer keep soda in the house, but on the rare occasion we go out to eat, we do allow soda with the meal. 
  5. We are in the process of replacing products in our home that contain sugar with alternatives that only contain "good sugars". This will continue to be a work in progress for a couple of months, I am sure.
One of the great things I have found through this process, is that the less sugar I consume, the less I crave. I have begun drinking my coffee with coconut oil and butter, rather than artificial sweetener and half-and-half. I no longer enjoy soda (full-sugar or diet) and even find my favorite Starbucks beverages too sweet for my taste any longer.

So as we continue on this journey, our next step is to cut down on our consumption of "quick" breads (pancakes, waffles, muffins, bagels, etc.). Again, we will not be cutting this out of our lives completely, but will be consuming fewer of them and replacing them with healthier options. I have already started doing this personally, mostly at breakfast. 

Breakfast in our house is usually very random and uncoordinated, especially in the summer. So usually the kids resort to some sort of convenience food, typically a bagel, frozen waffle, muffin, etc. But lately, I have started having a smoothie for breakfast (my favorite lately has been spinach, avocado, rolled oats, blueberries, almond milk, and cinnamon). Other good alternatives we have tried include egg scrambles (with ingredients like cheese, onions, spinach, etc.), oatmeal, yogurt-based smoothies, and omelets with custom ingredients.

Food plays so much more of a role in our health than I ever gave it credit for and I am looking forward to a future that includes a much healthier lifestyle.