A couple of weeks ago I met an old friend in our usual coffee shop and was very much looking forward to our obligatory huge slabs of cake.
‘I’m sugar free now,’ she said.
‘Why?’ I tried to ignore the stabbing pain of betrayal as I gazed longingly at the desserts behind the counter.
‘You know why.’ She gave me the look. Pretty much the same one our tutor gave us when we first met on a nutritional therapy course fifteen years ago.
Sugar is bad. We all know that and yet we continue to eat it.
‘But sugar tastes so good!’ I said.
‘I’ve just read Sweet Poison by David Gillespie and it explains everything so well. All that stuff we were taught but we choose to ignore nowadays. Buy the book.’ She said
‘I don’t want to.’
‘Honestly, Louise. You have so much pain and inflammation it could really help you. Plus you don’t sleep well. Buy the book.’
‘It’s too big a lifestyle change.’ I protested.
‘You can still drink wine, she said.
I bought the book.
The next day Amazon delivered the book, along with some sugar free recipe ones I’d also ordered and as I unpacked them I realised I didn’t really want to go sugar free but I’d been swept away by my friend’s passion and enthusiasm. Nevertheless that evening found me curled on the sofa with a large glass of wine and a big bar of fruit and nut flicking through the pages. As I read, everything I’d previously learned came flooding back. How our body’s can’t recognise fructose and never realise we are full when we eat it. The massive part sugar plays in inflammation. The way the sugar spikes can affect our mental health. Interfere with our sleep patterns. Suddenly the mouthful of chocolate I’d been chewing didn’t taste quite so good.
My diet has gradually deteriorated since signing a book deal. Long hours spent at my computer has seen our meals, once lovingly prepared from scratch, now frantically purchased from M&S. And I felt sick. Sick of feeling sick. Sick of feeling tired. In pain. Falling into bed exhausted at the end of each day knowing I’d spend half the night lying awake. What was I doing to my poor body which has already been through so much?
I’ve spent the last few days reading. There’s so much information out there and much of it conflicting. I’ve planned meals, shopped, mentally prepared and today is the first day of my 14 day sugar free experiment. I’m not expecting miracles and I’m not expecting it to be easy but I’m feeling excited about what lies ahead. I’ll let you know how it goes!
UPDATE – You can read how I found the first 7 days sugar free here.The second week is here.
Photo by Viktor Forgacs on Unsplash
I’ll be following your progress! I stopped taking sugar in my coffee before and considering I drink about thirty cups a day, it was a LOT! But I had serious withdrawal from it, it shocked me how much.
Good luck! Xx
Thanks Emma. You know what a cake addict I am. Not expecting it to be easy but I’m excited (now) although by friday I might feel very differently! xx
Good luck. My husband has started the keto diet and cut out pretty much all carbs so I have cut back after being bombarded with info and feel guilty when I look longingly at a biscuit. I am a biscuit and crisp addict and it is soooo hard.
Thanks. I think my husband might have to join in with me although we need to figure out a sustainable middle ground I think.
It helps. I daren’t go into my teenager’s room as she has hoarded all contraband items in case we try to convince her to give some up.
Hehe my children have hidden the ketchup!
I have had to give up all food as I’m now peg fed so just think of me when you think of cake 😉
Aww so sorry Melanie but actually that has inspired me. I don’t need cake – I need nutrients.
Good luck! Everybody says how poisonous sugar is – our youngest daughter is a dentist and she is always going on about the dreadful results of sugar. I wish you lots of will power and I’m sure there are alternatives that you can find. Congratulations on your latest book launch too. I’ll watch the sugar journey with interest. x
Thanks Angela. And you must be so proud of your daughter! Not an easy profession to get in to x
Good luck, Louise. Sugar is addictive and so difficult to fight because it’s everywhere. Having said that, I know from personal experience that the less you eat, the less you crave – and you’ll feel so much better for it.
Thanks so much for the encouragement.
Once you’ve been off sugar for a while, you’ll lose the taste for it and everything else will taste better. I don’t have much sugar, other than a small piece of wholemeal homemade cake with a cup of tea once a day, but it’s more to keep the rest of the family company with a 5 pm clocking-off time ritual when we relax and have a chat about our day, rather than a particular need on my part. I also feel obliged to make puddings and jam sometimes, with some of the produce from our allotment, after Mister putting so much hard work into it!
I’m making some sugar free jam with chia seeds at the weekend. Must be lovely to grow your own.
Wow! How do you make sugar free jam? Is the recipe in Sarah Flower’s book? It always bothers me how much sugar goes into jam, even though I tend to use unrefined sugar.
Yes it is. I haven’t tried it yet so not sure how good it will be. I’ll let you know.
Reblogged this on Ideas.Become.Words and commented:
I don’t drink wine, but I’m still going to by the book!
My favourite author from 2017, Louise Jensen – who wrote The Sister, The Gift and The Surrogate – also likes to maintain a mostly sugar-free diet.
Now how relevant is that to me right now?!
With mother’s diabetes slightly more under control with her four insulin injections per day, and her life saved by the NHS 23 nights ago, I think it’s time I started to really learn how to cook sugar free 🌸
Thank you for sharing this book with us Louise 💫