OT: No Sugar For Lent

So I have given up processed sugar (this will include high fructose corn syrup, and any products that have processed sugar or HFCS in them) for Lent. I’ve never celebrated Lent before, as I’m not Catholic (My husband, Aidan, is Catholic, but he’s not celebrating Lent! He says he’s giving up mushrooms…he hates mushrooms and never eats them! Cheater!), but yesterday evening I just decided to do it. So it’s not really Lent for me, it’s more of my own personal spiritual journey, but there you have it. Good-bye sugar. I’m so hardcore. 8)

Anyway, I always tell people that I’m not a huge sweets eater…and I’m not…really. I guess. But then I count how many times during the week I buy cookies (Paul Newman’s and Nature’s Own, but still!), or Lindt chocolate, or red velvet cake from Publix, or Rooibos tea with two teaspoons of turbinado sugar, or Stonyfield Farms yogurt, or friggin FROOT LOOPS!!!, and I realize that I actually do eat a lot of sugar.

Anyone here ever had to give up sugar for whatever reason? I seem to be experiencing some dizziness and light-headedness, but I’m wondering if it’s just my mind playing tricks on me. I quickly ate a tangerine, and it seems to have helped a little, but I’m still feeling kinda…strange.

I’m gonna try my best to eat 2-3 pieces of fruit per day to help balance my blood sugar levels. I’ll be posting in my blog every evening to recount what I ate throughout the day, and how my body is reacting. I’m hoping toward the end of Lent, my body will be saying, “Yay! I love this no sugar thing!” :happydance:

P.S. Aidan obviously has no confidence in me whatsoever, as I just found a baggie of Thin Mints Girl Scouts Cookies in my lunchbox. :nails:

lol@ the cookies.

I haven’t, by any means, given up sugar completely but I do check labels a lot for added sugars. some things I don’t mind but if you look at the labels you will be SHOCKED at all the things that have added sugar in them.

I would guess that the dizziness is probably withdrawals. whenever we take away something that our bodies are used to getting it has to be reprogrammed. I would say the tangerine was a good way to combat that since it is natural sugar.

There are certain foods that i can NOT check labels on because if i do, i will never eat them again. and then i am sad. (those brownie bowl thingies were one of them… something like 45g of sugar. :verysad:)

dh is giving up on sodas b/c of the sugar but he still eats other stuff w/ sugar (but not constantly or anything…). I’ve been proud of him b/c this is the longest I’ve ever seen him avoid soda!

I grew up not eating sugar for the most part b/c dad is diabetic. I have such a sweet tooth now that I’m an adult and I think giving up sugar would be hard for me–I do use splenda quite a bit but that’s more for the calorie reduction (and yes, I know–it’ll probably kill me or give me brain cancer or something but if spenda doesn’t then my cell phone will so I figure I’ll just do both… :shrug: ), I even use it on my special K cereal! I love cupcakes and although I don’t eat them often–I can’t imagine giving them up alltogether!

Now partially hydrogenated oils is a different thing all together…I’m trying to cut them out of diet as much as possible–it’s hard b/c that stuff is in EVERYTHING but I think changing to natural peanut butter alone has made quite an impact b/c I eat a lot of PBJs!

What you are starting to experience is the effects of detox. Your body is beginning to cleanse itself of all the yucky symptoms that accompany sugar intake. Don’t be too surprised if you have some headaches as well. Drink lots of fluids and don’t take headache medicine. Allow your body to fight this naturally.

The symptoms should clear up in a day or two.

Dh and I did the Maker’s Diet in the fall of 2005. We gave up sweets, as well as many other food products, for about eight weeks.

Check the labels of your groceries very, very carefully. There are many products that contain sugar or some derivative of it.

What a GREAT thing to give up! You won’t regret it! :cheering:

Forgot to mention…

Try drinking fresh carrot juice. It’s got a lot of natural sugar that your body needs.

Stay away from processed juices as they are LOADED with sugar.

I gave up chocolate once … and I was surprised to find on Easter Sunday that I didn’t enjoy my easter egg as much as I thought I would … :shrug:

Thanks for the encouragement and advice guys! This is gonna be a tough one, but I’m confident that I can do it! :cheering:

First few days will be the worst. Drink LOTS of water!!!

Each day will get easier.

You go girl!!!

Good for you! I’ve been doing a similar thing, though not so hard-core. Though I’m still very much a sweet tooth, I have stopped adding processed sugar to my coffee – for dental reasons more than anything else. I’ve switched to xylitol, which is a natural sugar substitute also known as birch sugar. (These days it’s usually made from corn cobs, which unlike birch trees, are a readily renewable resource.) You’re not going to be fooled that it’s white sugar if you taste it on its own, but it works quite well in coffee. (It’s about 10 zillion times better than splenda or equal, that’s for sure!)

There are other sugar alcohols (a misnomer for this class of substitutes because technically they aren’t sugars or alcohols), but I chose xylitol because of its added benefit – it actually inhibits the growth of the bacterium that produces dental plaque. Some people report a laxative effect when using it (mainly in excessive amounts), but it hasn’t been a problem for me at all. (Erythritol is supposed to be better in that respect, though it’s efficacy as a plaque inhibitor has less support.) I use two heaping teaspoons in my morning latte. Other benefits include low glycemic response, and fewer calories compared to sugar.

I once, for reasons that are still unclear to me, with a friend, decided to eat only fruits and vegetables for a week. I think I made it to day 3 before I caved and ate 4 crackers and day 5 before I gave up completely. I was really really hungry. No matter how many carrots or pieces of broccoli I stuffed down my throat, I was starving. I was never so happy to eat beans again in my life!

And, I was very very cranky.

Good luck to you. This sounds like a hard one. I went to Catholic school for 9 years (though I’m not Catholic), so you’d think I’d know this, but how long is lent? I think I remember being forced to do Stations of the Cross, which I hated with a passion, but that’s all I remember.

That happened to me when I tried to give up meat! I was constantly hungry. I think I lasted about two weeks. Hey wait a minute… you gave up beans? I suppose you could argue that they’re not technically veggies, but come on – that’s going a bit overboard. What’d you do for protein?

mwedzi - lent is 40 days and nights if I remember rightly from my Catholic education (length of time Jesus was in the desert).

Here’s a tip for giving up sugar, and experiment a band leader once made us do - all you need is a big bag of sweets and a trumpet.
Every day for a week, eat 5 sugary sweets, wait an hour without eating/drinking anything else and then play the trumpet for half an hour. During that week, try not to use the spit valve (not easy).

After a week, clear the spit valve into a cup, and take the trumpet apart to clean it.

You’ll notice that it is disgustingly gunked up with the nastyness of sugar spit.
Imagine what thats doing to your body if after an hour its still on your breath enough to gunk up a trumpet.

It certainly worked for a bunch of gum chewing, soda swilling teenagers anyway!

Good luck!

Good luck with giving up sugar! I am totally addicted. When I was in Jr High I would sit next to a girl who would give up her desserts for Lent–Yep–I totally cashed in on that spiritual sarifice and scarfed the 2nd dessert down with great delight. I saw her at a classs reunion and she didn’t remember.

I second the support of xylitol! It can really be effective in reducing dental cavities, but you need to consume about 6 grams daily, consistently for the best effect.

I did a 10-day juice fast last summer. The first three days were very hard, but after that I didn’t miss food. I juiced fresh fruit and vegetables and drank a lot of water.

It was amazing how much better I slept. I lost about 10 pounds (which I really didn’t need to lose, but I eventually leveled out).

Bet y’all think I’m pretty weird now (if you didn’t before :teehee: )

I did a 10-day juice fast last summer. The first three days were very hard, but after that I didn’t miss food. I juiced fresh fruit and vegetables and drank a lot of water.

It was amazing how much better I slept. I lost about 10 pounds (which I really didn’t need to lose, but I eventually leveled out).

Bet y’all think I’m pretty weird now (if you didn’t before :teehee: )[/quote]
I’ve done a 3-day juice fast before. Since then, I’ve tried to do it once every few months, and always fail on the first day. That one time I did it, I really believe my body needed it. Fasting is wonderful. :slight_smile:

I did a 6 week no processed sugar, no gluten and no dairy diet with my family awhile back. For the purposes of identifying food allergens. It was tough, but a very good thing to do. As the others said, you’re going through a little withdrawal, but that should pass in a few days. Lots of water, it helps to flush out the toxins and stuff like that. Good luck! :cheering: