So, as I’m typing this I am currently just over a month into my sugar detox plan. As I told you in my previous post, I was full on addicted to sugar.
After all of the holiday indulgences I decided I needed to cleanse my body of these sugars and free myself from this addiction. And, boy, have I come a long way.
Keep reading to see how I’m doing now, the results I’ve seen, and what I’ve learned from this journey.
I was extremely successful in fully detoxing my body from refined sugars this time around, unlike other times in the past. If you haven’t read the very unconventional method that worked for me, then you can read all about it here.
I think with previous methods the difference was that I never completely cut out the refined sugars and other trigger foods, so I would still get those intense sugar cravings. To clarify, in the past I was still eating honey, milk, cereal, yogurt, etc. And to compensate, I would eat tons of these things, but still never really feel satisfied.
But, as you read about in my Sugar Daddy Detox plan, all of those items are currently on my list of “banned foods”.
I think to truly get the effect here of having zero cravings, you need to eliminate all foods that trigger the desire for more sugar. Only you can determine exactly what those foods are, because everyone’s body is different. But for me, they were some of the things I just mentioned above.
Anyway, here are some of my observations as well as the results I’ve seen from my sugar detox:
Now, while I did not do this intentionally for weight loss, I ended up losing 5 lbs in a month. 5 lbs! Now, that may not sound like a lot to some people, but I am a very slender person to begin with. Some would argue I do not even have 5 lbs to lose. It’s a little over 5% of my total body weight, which is equivalent to a 200 lb person losing 10 lbs in a month. And that is definitely nothing to squawk at.
Honestly, I don’t even know where my 5 lbs came from.
Actually, that’s a lie…I think I do know where most of it came from…
The Gut is Gone
Ok, so I know I said I didn’t have much weight to lose, but I did have that stubborn little “layer” of stuff going on in the lower stomach area. Know what I’m talkin’ about? Yeah, well that stuff is now completely gone. Vanished into thin air. My pants are fitting a lot better, and I don’t get that awkward “hump” when pulling my leggings up over my hips. In a weird way I almost feel like part of me is missing. But in a good and healthy way!
If you’re wondering how long it took to see a flatter stomach, I literally noticed a difference right from the get-go. As in 2-3 days from when I stopped eating sugars. And it just kept going from there. Pretty crazy.
Appetite & Hunger
Before I quit sugar, I would be starving for a meal every 3-4 hours, and every 1-2 hours I would need a sugar/candy fix. But since my sugar detox, I am almost never starving. I get hungry, but not starving. I mean like stomach-rumbling-keeling-over-in-pain starving.
Because of this I end up eating less food less often. My body grew to realize when it was actually hungry, as opposed to just constantly fueling the cravings.
I also do not wake up ravenous in the morning and shove whatever I can find in my mouth for breakfast, which is what I had grown to accept as the norm in the past. I now wake up and am able to manage my hunger much more effectively and sensibly. (My go-to breakfast is a multi-grain rice cake with natural peanut butter, half a banana, and exxxtra cinnamon).
Also, when I eat meals I stay fuller longer. Like, I can actually go a full 4-5 hours without being hungry.
And after I eat I no longer get that craving for a piece of something sweet after the meal. This in itself is tremendous progress and something I never imagined myself being able to say!
Now, I am not going to sit here and tell you that giving up sugar gave me boundless energy day in and day out. But, I will tell you this. I stopped getting that sluggish feeling in the afternoon while sitting at my desk. You know, the one they call “the 2:30 feeling.”
In the past, this is when I would have grabbed a candy bar or a sugary drink to give myself a boost. But I don’t need those things anymore because I just don’t feel sluggish and tired (and no cravings for that bad stuff – yay!).
So, I’m pretty sure eliminating sugars helped me to prevent those fluctuations in my blood sugar and prevent those hi-low energy crashes.
My sleep has definitely been more sound during the sugar detox. I am a person who has always struggled with falling asleep at night, so I wouldn’t say it really helped in that respect. (Maybe it’s all that extra energy?) Falling asleep has never been my specialty. But, once I do fall asleep I notice I don’t toss and turn as much.
I also wake up feeling more rested. But, let’s not get it twisted. I do not jump out of bed early in the morning and greet the day like one of those annoying “morning people” (#sorrynotsorry). But I do feel like the sleep I got was more quality and restful.
This is a weird observation, and if you don’t eat a lot of sugar in general, you may not even notice it. But in the past I always felt like my teeth were coated with grime by the end of the day. You know that gross texture you get on your teeth?
Well, I’ve realized that was from sugar. My teeth do not feel like that anymore and they stay squeaky clean until the end of the night when I brush them again.
So sorry, Mr. Dentist, but there will be no more cavities this year!
Things I Do Not Like About the Sugar Detox
There were a few things that I did not like about my sugar detox. Keep reading to see what they are and how I plan to improve on them.
Since I’m not eating sugar, I have to turn to other foods to round out my diet. And while my diet is pretty healthy with lean meats and vegetables, the snacks that I now eat are more salty than I would normally consume. I am very sensitive to sodium and I have to drink a lot more water to compensate for the salt intake. And some days I wake up feeling bloated and tight, which is a feeling I hate. Going forward I need to work on adding more lower-sodium options to my snack routine, like fresh vegetables with hummus.
Since I am more focused on eating healthy meals, I am cooking a lot more at home. This means tons of dirty dishes! So, yeah, the amount of dishes is annoying at times. I need to carve out at least an extra 15-20 mins a day to get all the cleaning done. But I think in the end it is well worth it.
I also need to work on changing up the variety of the foods I eat. I am getting slightly bored with what I feel like are the same foods all the time. But I guess this goes for anyone who is trying to eat in a way they are not used to.
And I do miss some of the “sugary” drinks like lemonade or iced tea with sugar, which I feel like quench my thirst better than plain water when I really have that parched feeling (or when I wake up the next morning after a night of partying. Which I wouldn’t know anything about…would you?)
Now, I just squeeze a lemon or lime into flavored seltzer water like Polar Selzer’s Blueberry Lemonade, and that will just about do it for me.
But as for the rest of the sugar, I could honestly live without it at the moment. My boyfriend ate a bowl of ice cream next to me the other night and I didn’t even get tempted.
Like, who even am I??
Anyway, here is a list of some of my go-to foods and a list of some foods I’d like to try and incorporate more into my diet going forward.
- All veggies (cooked & raw)
- Grilled Chicken
- Grilled Fish
- Rice (yes, I still eat rice, even white rice – the horror!)
- Deli Turkey
- Lettuce “Wraps”
- Half Banana with Natural Peanut Butter & Cinnamon (my fave “dessert” snack + breakfast)
- Berries, Kiwi, Apples, Clementines, Grapes
- Freeze Dried Fruit (seriously, I credit this for being able to get over my cravings! Read why here.)
- Raisins (in moderation, as these contain a lot of natural sugar)
- Cheese (in moderation)
- Cinnamon/Spices for Flavor
- Natural Peanut Butter (without added sugar)
- Mustard/Vinegar/Olive Oil
- Potato Chips (not healthy, but just being honest here! Read why I also credit these to curb cravings.)
Foods I’d Like to Incorporate More
- Hummus with Veggies
- Eggs (hard boiled, omelettes, and egg salad)
- Air-Popped Popcorn (none of that microwave stuff)
- Sour Cream/Cream Cheese (very low sugars, unlike some yogurts, but unfortunately high in fat)
- Other grains (Lentils, Barley, etc)
- Different Spices to add flavor (I came up with a delicious cauliflower recipe using a blend of about 6 exotic spices, so I am hoping to make a recipe post on that soon).
So, in summary, I am so glad I decided to go through with my sugar detox. It’s crazy to see how sugar had been affecting my body, my appetite, and my overall well-being. I have lost more weight (and stubborn belly fat) during this one month than that entire summer when I was eating only 900-1000 calories a day and working out 6-days a week (via suggestion from a nutritionist – never going back there again- ha!).
And, again, this isn’t a lifestyle I plan on doing forever, but I am going to try and keep it up for as long as I can.
Easter is coming, so hopefully the cravings don’t come back in full force when (notice I said when, not IF) I bite into my first Cadbury Mini-Egg. And yes, I will be fully indulging in these.
They only come once a year, after all…let a girl LIVE!
I also believe that everything in moderation is key. It’s totally OK to indulge in some sweets every now and then, but the problem before was that I couldn’t limit myself to just a couple here or there. Because…cravings!
But hopefully they’re now under control and all that is in the past. We shall see, won’t we?
I would love to hear any feedback you have for me or any helpful tips that you’ve personally experienced after you made the attempt to quit sugar. Please leave me a comment below, I love hearing from my readers!
Also, be sure to subscribe to my blog to stay updated on my progress.
Update: I now have a 60 day progress report! Keep reading to find out what to expect after 2 months of no refined sugars…
Update #1 (60 days in) : I have CHEATED.
So, I recently “cheated” on the sugar detox…oops! But it was bound to happen at some point, and I’m happy to report some positive outcomes:
- I made some gluten-free, dairy-free brownies for a birthday party I was invited to (the person has a dairy allergy). Since I had never made this allergy-safe recipe before I obviously had to test it once it was done. I ate a few bites (and a couple more at the party the next day), and was totally fine with it. No major cravings after that!
- And the other day I really had a hankering (did I really just say that.) for something sweet. The house was empty of fruit and other nutritious sweet foods, so I actually had a couple spoonfuls of ice cream. And you know what? I was totally fine with a couple bites! No intense cravings after that either.
- On one occasion I had a chewy caramel candy at night after dinner. And one piece was enough for me. Normally, I would have downed 4 or 5, but this time I stopped at one. Go me!
I am beyond happy that this plan has actually worked. If I am giving advice on being successful at it, I think the most important thing is that you really have to want to do it. You need to be mentally prepared to make the sacrifices and suffer a couple of days of misery while your body is “detoxing” and adjusting to the changes.
You need to have that determination in your body that you really want to cut the bad stuff out and quit sugar.
Just think about what it’s doing to your body (and maybe think about how good your flat belly will look in that bikini this summer!). Whatever motivates you to be successful, do that.
Other than being mentally prepared, your home should also be fully stocked with the proper groceries and healthy meal ingredients. If you do not have the proper food in the house you will be more tempted to snack on unhealthy items, and more likely to fail.
I also wouldn’t advise starting this plan immediately after a holiday, unless you fully eliminate all the excess candy, cookies, and treats you have laying around. Why torture yourself with all that extra temptation?!
However, I would advise to start on a Monday morning, when you can begin with a clean slate and get into a healthier daily routine. This will be easier than starting the plan on a weekend, when social commitments may make it harder to initially stick to the plan.
So, I guess that’s all I have to say for now. Be sure to sign up for my newsletter to get more updates as time goes on (plus, get notified of all my healthy recipes!)