Once you start looking for sugar on labels you’ll find it hidden in lots of unexpected places. As part of easing in to a sugar-free diet, this week we’ll start tracking our sugar intake. Write down what you have eaten, the amount of sugar and how you felt or the reason you ate the food. Then think of a substitute for next time you are in the same situation.
For example, here is my sugar intake for the last few days:
||Amount of sugar
|Gluten free gingernuts
||Wanted to finish off the packet and not waste money.
||Now not in the cupboard, so not a temptation.
|Biscuits at morning tea
||not sure. Were homemade.
||Was being polite.
||Take savoury morning tea to craft class.
|Fresh orange juice
||Use up three oranges.
||Mandarins are easier to eat whole.
|Takeaway hot chocolate
||Was at cafe and forgot about the sugary syrup and marshmallows.
||Order coffee or tea instead.
|Hot chocolate at home
|| Was bored.
||Try with honey or Stevia and pure cacao powder. Have a herbal tea instead.
||Finishing off the packet.
||AntiOx Chocolate (stevia)
||Now having tea without sugar.
Sugar Stacks may help with the amount of sugar in a particular food.
What sugary food have you been eating lately?
Today is the first day of my Sugar-Free Body Blitz.
A few years ago I read Sweet Poison and the Sweet Poison Quit Plan by David Gillespie (Sweet Poison website) and was impressed by his research, but was unsure about having dextrose (glucose syrup). Then I watched Dr Robert Lustig present Sugar: The Bitter Truth.
Last year I discovered Sarah Wilson’s I Quit Sugar
ebook (I Quit Sugar website). I recently borrowed her updated I Quit Sugar book with plenty of recipes from the library, and thought perhaps this was something I could try.
After some more research and consulting my nutrition guru Meghan Telpner, I decided to start my own version of quitting sugar. I am calling it The Sugar Free Body Blitz, because I’m doing the 12 week body blitz challenge as a way of making myself accountable. I will be tracking my weight and fitness levels. I plan on writing blog posts about my progress and sugar-free recipes as a way to keep myself motivated.
Aim: The type of sugar I am aiming to quit is refined sugar, because it is devoid of nutrients.
1. Instead I will allow some of the more nutrient dense sweeteners in small amounts, such as:
- backstrap molasses
- coconut nectar
- maple syrup
- palm sugar
- raw honey (a superfood)
2. I will also allow one to two serves of whole fruit a day – fruit are full of health benefits, so I don’t believe in cutting them out.
3. I will not use dextrose as it is processed and I don’t believe it has any health benefits.
4. I will not use artificial sweeteners.
Week 1 – Reducing refined sugar
Rather than go cold turkey I’m going to slowly reduce my sugar intake for the first week. Today I had my morning English Breakfast tea without sugar and I didn’t really notice any difference. I cut back on my morning biscuits and threw in the bin some chocolate brownies which were sickly rich. I noticed that my raspberry yogurt has 9.7g of sugar per serving, so I’ll have to find a plain organic yogurt next week. For an afternoon snack I had some popcorn with butter and salt.
To find out more about the problems with sugar watch Catalyst: Toxic Sugar? – ABC TV Science or the more scientific (and harder to understand) Sugar: The Bitter Truth.
We have been using a couple of the Natural Instinct products for awhile now. They are an Australian made natural skin and hair care brand, which are formulated with botanically-derived ingredients, certified organic extracts and pure essential oils. There are no nasties in their products, so they are grey-water safe, and products are not tested on animals.
Natural Instinct Hand Wash – is a firm favourite in our household. It lathers well and has an authentic lemon and lavender smell. Even better it also comes in a 1 litre refill bottle to save on packaging.
Natural Instinct Sensitive Soap Free Body Wash – is another firm favourite. It cleans well and has no scent. You get a smudgy lather, rather than big bubbles.
Natural Instinct Sensitive Shampoo – This one doesn’t lather as well as my regular shampoo because it is free of sulphates (SLS and SLES), so you’ll need to use a generous amount. This one is also scent free and ideal for use if you have dermatitis, eczema, psoriasis or allergies.
What I like about these products is the generous sized bottles they come in and the pump spouts for easy application. All the products are free of sulphates, petrochemicals, parabens, PEGs and mineral oils. There are also no artificial colours or fragrances.
Kefir is a fermented milk drink that originated in the Caucasian Mountains near Turkey, where it was used for centuries as a healthy drink. Kefir is a probiotic – a source of beneficial bacteria and yeasts which help maintain a healthy digestive system. These include Lactobacillus, Lactococcus, Leuconostoc, and Saccharomyces kefir.
It is best to introduce homemade kefir after homemade yogurt, when healing of the gut wall has taken place.
Kefir starters are available from your local health food store, although it is best to ring and check they have some in stock first. They are sold as ‘grains’, even though they are not a grain. Alternatively, in Australia you can order direct:
If you are overseas look for:
If you don’t want to make your own kefir, you may like to try Babushkas Kefir which comes in plain, strawberry and honey.