Wednesday, December 15, 2010

I Was a Sugar Glider

Sugar by any other name is still sugar
I am not and never have been diabetic. My blood tests have always come back with healthy sugar levels. Medically, it was never suggested to me that sugar was a problem. Doctors suggested I lose weight but they never talked about removing sugar from my meals. I could glide by without too much consternation from my doctors because they considered me a "healthy morbidly obese woman" simply because I did not have sugar related medical issues that they could relate to. Without a diagnosis of insulin resistance or diabetes they could not make a connection. Doctors, for the most part, are not trained or educated to the fact that food, most particularly sugar, can be an addictive substance. It seems there have not been enough medical studies done on the subject of food as an addiction. As we are becoming a national of obese people I think more of us need to ask why. Why aren't more studies being done to look into foods as addictive substances? I will happily give my wealth of life experience in this area to a scientist who wants to study the causes of effects of food and addiction.

As a sugar glider, I lost the first 210 pounds in my journey while still consuming some sugary foods. Little by little those occasional sugar foods were appearing more often in my daily food plan. I had the choice of admitting there was a problem or lying to myself.  Eating sugar causes me to break out in fat and food obsessed thoughts. It leads me to want other things that bring the weight back on, among other problems I have no intention of reintroducing to my life. It was getting harder to be a sugar glider.

By necessity, today I strive to not have foods with sugar.  This is me. This is what I need to do for recovery from my food obsession and for continued success in keeping the pounds off. I do not say YOU need to do this. I do not suggest this is your future. I ask only that you accept it is what I need to do for me and please keep an open mind to what I am about to write.

Yum, give me more sugar
The following ingredients  are sugar or become sugar and in your body: white sugar, brown sugar, raw sugar, natural cane sugar, agave, organic cane crystals, organic cane juice, condensed fruit juice (added to foods in place of sugar), corn sweetener, corn sugar, corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, fructose, glucose, rice syrup, honey, maple syrup, Splenda Brown Sugar, Splenda for Baking (yes, both these Splenda off-shoots contain lots of sugar), sugar made from beets, dates . . . these are all sugars. This is not a complete list.

If you are without a medical issue that has been attributed to sugar consumption and you're struggling with food that contains white sugar, chances are you will struggle with food made with natural, unprocessed, organic agave syrup (or any other sugar). Maybe not the first time you try it, maybe not the second time - but see what happens over a period of a week or a month. 

Sugar Skulls from Mexico
I understand people who are unwilling to give up sugar, who still struggle with their weight and food obsession. I was one of these people for the longest time. I may be that person again one day if I lose the knowledge I already have about myself and think that I 'deserve' to have a food that is sugar laden. Refraining from sugar is not the easiest thing in the world to do, at least, it was not easy for me. Once I did it, the desire to eat sugary foods diminished to the point where now it is almost non-existent. Today it is easy. Yet there are days when it requires a bit more effort on my part to remain willing. On those days I pay extra close attention to remembering the PAIN, FEAR and FRUSTRATION of being a 385 pound woman who was slowly dying from the effects of sugar without ever having a blood-sugar issue. By remembering where I may be spared from ever returning to the hell from which I escaped.

Sugar Glider
Today I am not a sugar glider.  I can willingly accept that sugar hits me the way crack consumes the addict. Like the recovering drug addict or alcoholic my recovery today is contingent on my remaining willing to be rigorously honest and accept that I am an addict, not just yesterday but today as well. This includes not 'using' the substances that are addictive in my body, mind and soul. I am feeling good about who I am today. I cannot have sugar by any name. Okay~ there are many worse things in life than living sugar free.

Instead of being a sugar glider, I want a sugar glider for Christmas!

Is sugar gliding preventing you from keeping the pounds off? 


Anonymous said...

I like this post. I have lost and regained a lot of weight a lot of times. I now know, for me, that to successfully lose the weight and keep it off, I will have to abstain from sugar/pasta/bread/potatoes the rest of my life. That's a hard thing to imagine. I don't know if I can. So I am taking it day by day (and hour by hour when the going is tough).

Jane Cartelli said...

Just remember it is one day at a time. You only have to abstain today. Get through today. Tomorrow you can deal with tomorrow. This has worked for me for the last 4 years and 23 days. One day at a time.


Anonymous said...

And this is why I so enjoy your blog. :) I like your view on abstinance. It mirrors my own. It's hard to imagine a life of going without, but I can imagine today... and really, I guess that is all I have to ever work on.