Six months ago I challenged myself to go thirty days with no added sugar. That meant no breads, cereals, dressings, or meals with sugar added. It was definitely a challenge, one I’m proud to have accomplished. I’d always claimed to not have a sweet tooth, but I found out the hard way that I’d been eating way more added sugar than I ever realized. A handful of chocolate chips here, some peanut M&M’s there, it all went away during the challenge. But the funny thing is, I didn’t want it back. After going 30 days with no added sugar I was liberated, free of sugar’s grip. Six months later and I haven’t gone back, haven’t given in to added sugar. It’s gone for good.
Prior to the 2014 Holiday season I took a long, hard look at the sugars I ate. I thought about it for months and contemplated if I was addicted. I wondered if I could to do it, if I could cut out added sugars for good. I wondered if my man would want to do it with me and I was definitely a bit scared. I was scared because the change seemed daunting. I was scared because the challenge felt huge and I doubted whether I could make it thirty days. But I decided I was going to do it no matter how hard I thought it would be, and in spite of my fears. It was a great decision!
Removing added sugar from my diet was one of the best things I’ve ever done! I feel liberated from sugar. I feel strong. I sleep better and I hardly ever have those guilty feelings while eating. I’m also constantly surprised when reading food labels and discovering items I never knew had added sugar. RIP Doritos. RIP Pizza Bagels. We had many fun nights together, but you’re gone from my diet for good.
Since completing the challenge, I’ve picked and chose when and if I want to have added sugar, i.e. a fancy dessert or two. I’ve found that I’m so much pickier about what I’m willing to splurge on. It was my birthday a few weeks ago, so I tried the birthday cake my mom made. Just a little taste with some classic vanilla ice cream was all I needed. I realized that its more than enough; a little taste is still so sweet! The sugar is so sweet, so sweet kids. It’s also super empowering to say no to store bought desserts. I don’t need a cookie, nor do I want a cookie. I don’t need a cupcake either. It’s not at all appetizing.
Even though I’ve let my guard down every now and again, I’m still adamant about no added sugar, about limiting any and all added sugar in my diet. I constantly read food labels on all the products I buy, and I’m still amazed at what has added sugar and what does not. Flavored chips are a major culprit. I used to love sour cream and onion, jalapeno, and even salt and vinegar chips, but I don’t see the need to add sugar to them. I’d love the option to buy a version without the sugar, but for now they are gone from my life. My snack options are smaller, but I never really needed the snack anyways.
Saying goodbye to added sugars has made me ten times more aware of what I’m eating and full of natural energy. I don’t miss having chocolate in the house. I don’t even miss my peanut M&M’s or mini candy bars. I don’t miss having ice cream or whipped cream. I feel better. I feel strong! I highly recommend no added sugar for life.
Mandi Mellen is Lead Editor, Staff Writer, and Featured Vlogger at BuzzChomp. She’s an actress, writer, and producer. Get lost in her youtube comedy channel PillowTalk TV. Follow her on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, or Instagram
Photo Credits to: http://synapse.ucsf.edu/ http://www.ucsusa.org/