Top | the better bites girl
(post, Michaele Kruger)
I have been craving sweets and sugary treats more than usual lately... You know what that means, it's time for a cleanse. After the sugar-coated holidays and a few too many months of telling myself "just this once" or "it's a special occasion," it's come time for me to detoxify my system and get rid of these nasty sugar blues. It's day four of my 31 days of March Madness, and I'm desperately missing the honey in my herbal tea, the raisins in my yogurt, and my after-lunch dark chocolate fix. I do know, however, I'm doing what's best for this over-sweetened body of mine. I figure anytime you start to crave one particular food item it's time to detox. I'm not eliminating any other foods from my diet (not yet anyway, that will happen during my upcoming Spring Cleaning Cleanse), just sugar. I am still eating plenty of dairy, root vegetables, and fruit all of which contain naturally occurring sugars; these foods however are accompanied by fiber and other nutrients which help the body process and break them down. They don't do to the system what other simple sugars do. The items that are officially off limits include: white, refined sugar (this is actually always off limits because it's so super-duper processed), brown sugar, turbinado sugar, raw sugar (all of these are processed as well, but a little less so), honey is out and so is agave, maple sugar, molasses and Stevia too. I do not disagree that some of these sweeteners are OK in small amounts, but I have to stop the cravings and that will never happen while I'm still eating sweet things. I guess I should also mention artificial sweeteners, you know, the pink, blue and yellow packets that don every restaurant table top in the country... if I did ever consume those nasty little poisons (excuse my extreme hatred for those so-far-from-natural items) I would eliminate them from my diet as well because they too confuse the brain and the body and keep your cravings for sweet foods high. I had a talk with someone on Tuesday and she was telling me that she has been off sugar for nearly 2 years!!! Now that's dedication that I'm not sure I am ready for, but imagine how liberated she must feel to not physically and chemically desire chocolate coated and icing covered confections. She did mention though that while she no longer craves cupcakes and candy bars she has to ocassionally remind herself of how she would feel if she were to give in and consume them. Kudos to her because that is some serious self-control. But self-control in the food department is something that most of our culture seems to be lacking these days. Throughout the rest of the month of March, I will be testing out my own self-control and I would love it if you would join me on this sugar free adventure. The benefits of a sugar detox program include: Clear the body of toxins Gain more energy Eliminate cravings Re-regulate your blood sugar level (to do this it is also important to stay away from refined flour products, so read those labels!) Rid your body of excess carbohydrates Revitalize your body's digestive organs Shed some winter layers and jump start your weight loss program For the rest of the month I will be posting about different types of sugar, simple vs. complex carbohydrates, and how they effect you in your day-to-day life. Please join me on a little sugar free adventure and let me know how you are doing by posting in the comments section. Oh, one little tip, keep a diet and activity journal, I promise, it helps. 1, 2, 3, DETOX!