Treat Yo’self

treat-yoselfSo I was REALLY craving chocolate today and I figured since I’ve had 12 solid sugar free days, I was gonna treat myself. Most of my sugar cravings are gone (I even turned down free pizza, cookies, and hot cocoa at a meeting the other day!), but I still really want chocolate.

I’ve been depriving myself lately so I decided, rather than go on a binge, I would allow myself a little something.

If you haven’t already tried them, may I introduce Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate Honey Mints!

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These tasty little guys are DELICIOUS (especially if you love really bitter chocolate like I do) and only have three ingredients: chocolate liquor, honey, and peppermint oil.

Now, normally on this little no sugar journey I’m going on I would not eat honey, but to keep myself from eating something with refined sugar I’m willing to eat a little honey. I’ve learned in the past that complete deprivation from the foods you enjoy can end badly, It’s better for me to eat 140 calories of something containing honey to keep me on track than binge on something worse.

 

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How I love my procrastination

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While doing lab reports I like to have a little something playing on the half screen so I am motivated to keep working. Lately I’ve been obsessively watching documentaries about the food industry, trying to hear different philosophies on how to eat.

One that I watched recently was Food, Inc. Like it sounds, the documentary shows the business side of the food industry. I try to take everything I hear with a grain of salt, but if half of what this movie says is true then I never want to eat anything ever again! I’ll move somewhere clean and start an organic farm for myself! But that’s not happening any time soon.

This movie has its share of truths and biases, but it does get you to think about what it takes to get food to your table and what’s actually in the food you’re eating. I’ve been trying lately to choose organic and local options in support of smaller farms. Hopefully little changes can add up to a difference, but the food industry is definitely whack and needs a major overhaul.

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I want my bread!

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If you’re like me and hate the idea of living without bread, you are in luck. I have been eating this bread for about a year now and I love it! There is no added sugar and it is made from organic sprouted grains, so it is the best option for bread I’ve found out there.

The taste takes a little getting used to for some people, but I love the heartiness of it and am totally filled up by an egg sandwich or some toast with nut butter. They have a few different varieties (including cinnamon raisin!) and I’ve liked all the types I’ve tried.

Since this is about the only wheat I get these days since most other products containing wheat also have sugar, I don’t feel as bad nomming on some bread.

One day I might give up all bread for good, but until that day, Ezekiel bread is where it’s at.

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Guide to Recognizing your sugar

Recently I’ve been spending a lot of time reading labels at the grocery store. I try to eat more fruits, nuts, vegetables, and lean proteins, but I’m not ready to give up on all processed foods completely. What I’ve realized is that practically everything in a package contains sugar. What I find most frustrating is that labels usually don’t say “sugar”, but that doesn’t mean the product doesn’t contain sugar.

I’ve been doing some research to make myself a better consumer and I luckily found the Hungry for Change website . They give a really good rundown on how to recognize sugar on a label. The words synonymous with sugar you should watch out for are:

Sucrose, Maltose, Dextrose, Fructose, Glucose, Galactose, Lactose, High fructose corn syrup, Glucose solids,Cane juice, Dehydrated cane juice, Cane juice solids, Cane juice crystals, Dextrin, Maltodextrin, Dextran, Barley malt, Beet sugar, Corn syrup, Corn syrup solids, Caramel, Buttered syrup, Carob syrup, Brown sugar, Date sugar, Malt syrup, Diatase, Diatastic malt, Fruit juice, Fruit juice concentrate, Dehydrated fruit juice, Fruit juice crystals, Golden syrup, Turbinado,  Sorghum syrup, Refiner’s syrup, Ethyl maltol, Maple syrup, Yellow sugar.

That’s a lot to keep in mind. Some are pretty obvious, but when in doubt beware the -ose!

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I’m I Doctor!

 

 

 

Dammit Jim! I’m a doctor, not a nutritionist!

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Or at least I’m trying to be. A year after graduating with a BA in English, I have embarked upon the long journey of becoming a doctor. I am currently in a post-bacc pre-med program, taking all those undergraduate science courses I now regret not taking fresh out of high school. It’s tough getting back into the mindset needed for science after spending four years studying a completely different subject. I feel like I don’t understand as quickly as everyone else, but I probably just need to get off sites like this and put more time into it.

Something I always think about when I picture myself as a doctor in the future is, will I be overweight? Would I trust an overweight doctor to give me advice about my health? I know that weight and health don’t always correlate, but it is more difficult to be heavy if you’re eating right and staying active. For me personally, I want to be healthy so when I give me patients advice it can be from personal experience. The best way to lead is by example, so if I eat a balanced diet and keep myself moving I will be more convincing if I tell my patients to do the same. I don’t drink too often and don’t smoke or do drugs, so food is the top bad habit I need to quit.

I have plenty of time to get healthy before I become a doctor so hopefully by then I will be at the level I want to be.

 

 

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Let’s Go!

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So I’m starting my no sugar life, and it doesn’t seem that bad. I did a trial run of 5 days without sugar before Thanksgiving and it was tough at first, but after the third day I didn’t crave it any more. I allowed myself to have sugar on Thanksgiving and the sweets (cheesecake, pie, whipped cream, ect.) just didn’t appeal to me as much as they would have in the past. I still had some, feeling more out of habit than anything else. The day after the holiday I was back to it and today, over a week after stopping eating sugar (with the exception of Thanksgiving), I don’t even want it.

The problem is, sugar is in EVERYTHING processed. Bread, cereal, condiments, you name it, there’s sugar in it. There’s even sugar in a lot of meats! It’s hard to avoid, but I’m doing my best. I haven’t cut out sugar from fruit, so bananas have been a big help! I just hope I can keep this up and continue to eliminate harmful foods from the diet.

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