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I Quit Sugar: Week 6

Week six! Two more weeks and I’ll have completed the experiment. I’m looking forward to continuing this new lifestyle, though, because I feel pretty amazing.

It takes an army to pick a berry. Actually, these folks admire Stanley Boyer, kneeling, as he picks strawberries in 1946. Boyer was one of the best strawberry pickers in the Portland area. His record was 21 crates of strawberries in a six-hour day, which I suppose is quite a lot.

It takes an army to pick a berry. Actually, these folks admire Stanley Boyer, kneeling, as he gathers strawberries in 1946. Boyer was one of the best strawberry pickers in the Portland area. His record was 21 crates of strawberries in a six-hour day, which I suppose is quite a lot.

Sarah Wilson, author of “I Quit Sugar,” gives some good tips about adding some sweetness back in during week six, specifically what you can get to eatin’.

  • Fruit! I was so, so, so excited to get back to fruit! Blueberries, kiwi and strawberries are all low in fructose, so I gobbled them up.
  • Stevia. This is a natural sugar that comes from the stevia leaf. It’s super sweet in small amounts, but is kind of expensive. I bought the Truvia brand and don’t expect to be using it all that often, so the initial cost will even out over the months.
  • Coconut water. I didn’t like this stuff at first, but I have tried several different kinds. I love the bottles with coconut pulp in them!

Wilson’s book has a recipe for coconut “granola,” which includes coconut flakes, ground almonds and cashews/peanuts/walnuts, but I haven’t gotten to try it yet.

I really don’t have many more updates this week because I have gotten to a state of balance. So exciting! I even comfortably wore a swimsuit today, which I haven’t done in a long, long time.

Anyway … give-a-way! Give-a-way! Look for this on my week eight post. In the meantime, let me know what you want to see me give away!

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I Quit Sugar: Week 3

Week three brought about the banning of all things sugar: Fruit, fruit juice, veggies high in sugar, tomato anything, honey, candy, soda … all of it. I’m not even allowing sugar substitutes such as stevia. I have to break myself of the entire taste of sweet, at least this week and next, but I do have some Truvia waiting patiently in my pantry for later in my journey.

If I were a canner, I could can all the fruit I want, like this woman in 1946. I just can't eat it in the next few weeks.

If I were a canner, I could can all the fruit I want, like this woman in 1946 who’s showing off her extensive fruit and veggie collection. I just can’t eat the goods while I’m breaking the sugar habit! I did, however, freeze eggplant from a super nice co-worker for future cooking.

Time for a reality check, folks. Our bodies are made to safely take in 6 grams of fructose a day. Four grams of sugar = 1 teaspoon of sugar = 1 sugar cube. Oh my gosh, that’s not very much!

So what the heck do I actually eat? Spinach is a main staple at dinnertime, and I have discovered Mediterranean food is extremely low in sugar! For the first time ever I made falafel’s from scratch. They were so easy! I cooked mine in coconut oil. I also paired them with a great tahini dressing and goat cheese.

Goats do a lot more than just make us delicious cheese. They also provide ecofriendly transportation for small children circa 1915.

Goats do a lot more than just make us delicious cheese. They also provide ecofriendly transportation for small Australian children circa 1915.

I kept snacking on my usual (spicy pumpkin seeds, cacao nibs, unsweetened coconut flakes, almonds). The almonds were getting kind of old, so I learned how to make them more delicious: activate the nuts!

Here’s how you activate nuts , according to Sarah Wilson, author of “I Quit Sugar,” and modified by me, a successful nut activator:

  • Soak overnight a lot o’ almonds in water and 1 teaspoon of celtic sea salt.
  • The next day, cover a cookie tray with the almonds. It’s OK if there is overlapping happening.
  • Stick them in the oven on the lowest setting for about 12 hours. Yes, it’s a long time, but the good news is you can freeze a large batch and not do this too often.
  • After 12 hours the nuts are perfectly crunchy and delicious and easier to digest, thanks to the soaking at the start, which is the step that actually activates the enzymes!

I have failed in my yogaventures this week, which is bad because I can feel my body getting out of whack. I have to get back on track today, no excuses.

I may have missed a few days of yoga, but I think I do this pose better than Billy Sunday, a baseball player in the 1880s who later became a famous American evangelist. I never do yoga in a suit, either. That's just silly.

I may have missed a few days of yoga, but I think I do this pose better than Billy Sunday, a baseball player in the 1880s who later became a famous American evangelist. I never do yoga in a suit, either. That’s just silly.

I had lots of food trials in week three:

  • Every single day. Seriously, my sugar cravings are bad, bad, bad. How do I cope? A cup of coffee or chai with almond milk. Activated almonds. Chia seed pudding. Hummus. A bit of cheese or lunch meat. Below are “The 9 Cs of goodness,” which Wilson offers as good substitutes for cravings.
  1. Cacao — Tastes like chocolate because it is the raw ingredient, cocoa.
  2. Chia — Seeds full of healthful benefits, just make sure you add them to a liquid (water, milk, egg, smoothie) so you can easily digest them.
  3. Chai — Delicious tea bags or from your own stock of ingredients, and not the sugary concentrate from Starbucks. I love Yogi’s Chai Rooibos. It’s caffeine free, which means I can drink it later in my newspaper shift and not be up all night long!
  4. Cheese — So satisfying. I enjoy perusing the specialty section at the grocery store.
  5. Cinnamon — I add this to a lot of things since it helps with anti-inflammation!
  6. Coconut water — I tried this for the first time this week. It was weird, but it was also out a can. I think I’ll spring for the kind in a paper box since my real problem was the taste of metal.
  7. Chicken — I live next door to the land of Tyson, so this is easy. I’m too cheap to buy the organic meat at this time.
  8. Coffee — I’m addicted.
  9. Coconut oil — Good for cooking or adding to dishes. I add a spoonful to oatmeal.
You don't have to dress like a chicken to eat one. Did nobody tell these folks? They are wearing these ridonkulous costumes for Mardi Gras in The Netherlands, 1911.

You don’t have to dress like a chicken to eat one. Did nobody tell these folks? They are wearing these ridonkulous costumes for Mardi Gras in The Netherlands, 1911. Naturally.

No new side-effects have occurred this week. I haven’t had any headaches, but am still lightheaded when I haven’t had a munchy in a few hours.

Changes I’ve noticed:

  • Weight loss. While I do not own a scale, I can tell my jeans are looser in my thighs, where I hold most of my extra poundage.
  • Focused. More so than usual, that is!

OK, week four, you’re the halfway point. Let’s get there!

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