Remember my 7 Resolutions and 7 Fitness Goals? One of those resolutions is to Eat Better.
A few days ago, I started working on cutting down on the sugar. I watched High Voltage’s appearance on Katie Couric’s talk show and decided today is the day to start doing things a little differently. It’s not I like I didn’t KNOW that sugar isn’t necessarily the best thing I can do for my health but I have a big sweet tooth… I am the girl who can drink soda while eating cake and then have some candy as soon as I’m done.
There was an episode of Friends where Ross’ son is born and Monica goes in to meet him and she introduces herself as, “I’m your Aunt Monica and I will always have gum!” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oal4SSI0KRo
In the past, I have made my own silent promise to all the people in my life, “I will always have candy!” Consequently, there is usually some kind of candy in my purse. The backstory to the candy is a little deeper but you’ll have to read about it in my book, Growing Up Wright.
So although I know the effect that sugar can have on my health, on Friday, I had a mini-epiphany and made a decision. (Decide then do, remember my post yesterday?) The focus is on moderation. The recommended daily allowance of sugar is 24 grams in 24 hours. That’s about 6 teaspoons of sugar. That’s having 2 teaspoons of sugar in each cup of tea and having 3 of those a day, and not eating any more sugar all day, everyday. Hmmm. Or if you’re not a tea drinker, that’s counting the sugar that’s added to most processed foods and salad dressings and sauces and condiments, not to mention the sweet treats.
These are some of the labels that were in my kitchen.
Look at the labels of any juice bottle and you realize that just one serving of juice exceeds that amount… except, who drinks one serving of juice anyway? That’s 8 oz. That’s half a glass. When I pour myself some juice, or soda, I want a glass full, not a half glass…. It might be because I am an optimist, I neither want to see the glass half full or half empty, what I want to is to see the glass completely full.
So, sugar. Here’s the challenge. Look at the labels of some of those things you have around you. How many grams of sugar in each serving? How many servings do you typically eat each time? How many of those sugar-y items do you eat every day?
So, these are the top 3 things I came up with to help me focus on overcoming the sugar:
- Dilute the sweet drinks. Trust me, after the first sip, your taste buds will adjust and you won’t miss the extra sugar. For me, the extra benefit is that when I add mostly water to to a little bit of juice, I still end up with a glass-full.
- Choose one sweet treat each day that respects the numbers – am I going to have a Starbucks treat after work? If that’s a yes, then I’ll forgo the ketchup at lunch or the packaged dressing on my salad – oil and vinegar works just as well, anyway.
- Share more. The more I give away, the less I have to snack on. If’s a treat, why not treat someone else well. One piece of candy is ok to give someone. Eating the entire bag of candy is bad for me to eat alone. So sharing my M&Ms with my friends does double duty because it gives me that generous feeling and helps my overall diet plan.
Go sugar-less in 3 steps or less. 24 grams or less in 24 hours. That’s the rule. Now, here’s the exception. When I’m running, especially when I am doing my long runs, I need easy sugar to keep me energized. So going forward, if I ever feel the need to eat something really sweet, I just need to go for a long run and use my candy as sustenance 🙂 I’ll either be eating less sugar or running really long.
Moderation, not elimination. So not that I can’t ever have soda or juice, ever again. but sugar-less is the focus. And it’s been working thus far. Today is only day 4 and they say it takes about 21 days to form a habit. So I’ll keep updating you on my progress for the next 17 days or so.
That’s what I’m thinking about today. What’s on your mind?