Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Life, Low on the Glycemic Index

Technically, this post isn't about baking and hence it belongs on the other blog. But seeing as how of late I haven't been posting over here at Eat My Cake, I thought this is where the explanation should be. Or, maybe I just wanted to post something over here. Who knows.

So my roommate and I decided last month to give up sugar for Lent. I mean, why not. I am a total sugar addict, and the habit was getting bad. So, I thought having a set beginning and end date to give up sugar would be a good thing. So, Lent it was.

And things have been going pretty good. I slipped a couple of times--by accident--and who knows how much sugar I've encountered during my eating out. I mean, stupid companies put sugar in mayonnaise for crying out loud.

It had been challenging to find sugar free versions of certain things--like the aforementioned mayo--and pancake mix (HELLO you put the sugar ON TOP; YOU DON'T NEED IT IN THE BATTER). When I have been craving chocolate it is almost impossible to get a fix, but I have found a few satisfying alternatives. I even found a cookie sweetened (heavily I might add) with fruit juice. Annmarie took me to a chocolate cafe where they have a few agave sweetened chocolates. Not so bad. I like a full fat vanilla yogurt; there is no full fat vanilla yogurt sweetened with something I can eat. So I'm doing strawberry kefir sweetened with agave instead.

(Oh yeah--I am allowing myself to eat honey, maple syrup, agave nectar, xylitol, and stevia. Everything else is blacklisted.) (And I know honey is still high on the glycemic index, but at least it's not a chemical.)

Going to the movies isn't as much fun--no candy--and no more pizza and root beer for me. Going to a coffee shop leaves me gazing longingly at the cookies, cakes, chocolates and pastries that are all off limit. Sigh.

But the worst part about going off sugar is that I feel so much better. The most marked improvement is my ability to wake up in the morning--I am much more spry and ready to go these days. Now this is compared to me before, so while I'll never be a morning person, it doesn't take 2 hours anymore before I feel fit for consumption. And, I'm not stiff and sore when I wake up. And, no more sugar hangovers. Those sucked the worst.

This sucks because it really is proof that I my life would function much better without it. And now I know better, dammit.

The jury is still out regarding PMS. I don't know if it was any better. But my sugar cravings were manageable as opposed to consuming. That's good.

I now have thirst with a desire to drink. On sugar, I had thirst with no desire to drink.

Speaking of those sugar cravings, my roommate says he doesn't have them anymore. I still have them. At least once a day and sometimes all freaking day it seems. But it feels good to not give in to them anymore. Sure, I still enjoy sweet foods like pancakes with maple syrup, and coconut ice cream sweetened with agave and fruit-sweetened hot fudge, and nectar bars and those fruit sweetened cookies that are too sweet. I still eat simple carbs like white bread and pasta on occasion. But hey, I'm not killing myself with processed cane sugar, sweetened cane juice, and all the terrible disgusting fake sugars like splenda and nutrasweet. Ick.

And as Easter approaches (the end of Lent) I wonder what I'll do. I miss not having to worry about sugar. I miss milk chocolate and my full fat vanilla yogurt, and GOD I miss cake. But, I am so enjoying my self control and not feeling crappy that I don't ever want to go back to eating sugar. I know I will try to find a happy medium, but I am worried that my sugar addiction is strong enough that I'll have to be either totally addicted or totally off to survive.

And then today, as I gallilvanted around town, I began sneezing. I have been sneezing all day, and as I looked at all the flowering trees and happy signs of spring, I realised that allergy season is descending upon me. The best way that I know of to combat seasonal allegies? Stay off sugar. Works like a charm.

So I guess my anxiety about living in a post sugar fast world can be postponed until May, at least.

Hooray, and damn!


  1. I hope you don't morph into evil carrot lady!

  2. Anonymous14/3/08 23:09

    Good job, ECL -- keep it up! I didn't know that laying off sugar helps seasonal allergies. I'll have to try that (damn!)


    aarrrggh... for some reason I haven't been able to post comments to your blogs lately, it's like Google won't let me log in! I'll just do it anonymously -- it's raiuchka.

  3. Melinda, haha, evil carrot lady! Actually, I do have a carrot cake recipe that's sweetened with honey and maple syrup. It's about the only cake recipe that I know of that I can make. So evil carrot lady just might happen.

    Raiuchka, yay, nice to hear from you! Laying off sugar makes a huge difference. So does laying off dairy. (double damn!) Bromelain helps as does quercetin, but you have to take both of those several times through the day. Stupid allergies.

  4. Okay -- so no lattes, either. Hmmm... exactly how much do I mind my eyes and throat itching? Is snot really all that bad?

    BTW, I am getting back on the blogging wagon with a new blog:

    Happy St. Patrick's Day!

  5. right on girl! i will add you to the 'roll.

    happy st pat's to you too! i've got to find some orange to wear...(might just be my undies)

  6. I've been doing seriously limited sugar and wheat and no dairy for the past three weeks and I feel amazing. For me, the cravings lasted about the first week and a half. It's so bizarre how the things that we love are often the worst for us. Good for you giving your body a break and learning how much better you can feel.