Wednesday, August 25, 2010

A Key to Weight Loss

Ok, I have a huge confession to make. Well, maybe not so huge but it could make me huge if I let it. I am addicted to sugar. Big time. Intelligently, I know better - I have been schooled on all of the problems that sugar can cause in the body and I know that sugar, if not used for energy by the body, will turn to that three letter word - FAT.

When I was growing up, and even into my 20's, I was always thin. I could eat whatever I wanted and pretty much didn't gain weight. In high school, my doctor told me that I actually needed to gain weight (I wish I had that problem now!). A family member was the opposite and had what is so lovingly called "baby fat". Well, now we're both adults and she is the thin one and I'm the one who is always unhappy with how I look. Yes, this is coming from a Holistic Nutritionist who should know better and I'm working on it. I guess it comes down to the fact that this is not the body that I thought I would have at this age. I was so used to eating whatever I pleased and then it all hit me when I became pregnant with my first child.....

Coming back to my addiction with sugar. I do have a problem with this and sugar is indeed a drug. It gets to your brain and sucks you into its black hole of ups and downs. I have used it to fill empty gaps when I'm feeling down, lonely, etc. etc. The trouble is, once you get on a sugar kick its hard to get off of it. That's what I'm going through right now. I was off sugar for the most part before summer - I felt good, was losing weight, my Rheumatoid Arthritis wasn't bothering me too much and then summer came. I went on vacation to a family cottage, then went camping, and visited family and friends. The sugar made its way into my body insidiously and now its here. A couple of days ago I began my detox from sugar and it truly is a detox. Make no mistake about it - SUGAR IS A DRUG! And here is something else: often what we crave we are allergic too. I don't mean in the sense of anaphylatic shock allergic but allergic in other ways. I truly think that I'm allergic to sugar and it causes me to have stomach problems/pains, causes my joints to flare up and causes fatigue. Allergies/sensitivities to foods can cause a myriad of symptoms in the body and one is often left wondering why they feel this way.

So, my detox has begun. I'll tell you what to expect when your body is detoxifying - headaches, fatigues, aches and pains.... you may even feel angry or just not yourself. Some people say they feel "spacey" and out of it and you may experience cravings.

I will tell you a secret that really isn't or shouldn't be a secret - the biggest and BEST way to lose weight is to cut out sugar from your diet. Its THAT simple. But is it really that simple? To put it into practice requires some changes emotionally if you use sugar as a crutch (like I do). You will need to fill that gap somehow - maybe with walks, exercise, meditation, PRAYER, giving it to GOD. You also need to keep your blood sugar levels stable by eating 3 main meals per day plus a couple of snacks (one mid morning and one in the afternoon). Make sure that you have a high quality lean protein with each meal, i.e. chicken, fish, dairy, red meat (a portion size for meat protein is 4 oz., about the size of your palm). Snacks can include a slice of cheese, whole grain crackers, a piece of fruit, or a serving of nuts (again, a serving is about 1/4 cup or what fits in the cup of your hand). Drink lot's of water as well.

When I say sugar I am referring to processed sugars or pure sugar as well as all things white (exception being cauliflower). The sugar we find in whole fruit is great because this is how God intended it to be eaten. Whole fruit has fiber, sugars and lots of antioxidants and phytonutrients that create a perfect package! Stay away from fruit juices (no fiber), table sugar, processed sugar, cookies, cakes, etc. etc. etc. If you can do this, you will begin to see your body become the body that it was meant to be.

Diets do NOT work. I have never in my life been on a diet. Taking out sugar from your life DOES work. Its that simple (well kind of....). I'll let you know it goes.