adding parsley

simple things to do today for a healthier and happier tomorrow

Month: October, 2012

sometimes…small things aren’t enough

This may sound contradicting, but I’m still going to say it. And write about it. Because though I am a firm believer that every small thing counts and that a bunch of small things add up to what makes a big difference, I also believe that sometimes…small things aren’t enough. And that includes the simple approaches that I write about.

I write about the small and simple things that make a significant impact on my health and happiness, to hopefully make living a healthy lifestyle attainable for those that are otherwise intimidated. And to prove that such a lifestyle is enjoyable. These approaches aren’t intended to be life saving solutions for people with major or urgent health issues though. They also aren’t intended to be catch-all solutions. There are times that we need or want the type of big changes in our lives, that may make more drastic measures appropriate.

That’s why, I’m quitting sugar. At least for an experiment. Most likely, not for life. Actually, most certainly, not for life.

My sugar habit started slowly, within reason and continues to be not that bad compared to what it could be. It also began with the best of intentions. While I was pregnant last year, I needed to increase my caloric intake and it just so happened that the majority of the foods I could stomach were filled with sugar (which I of course didn’t mind at the time). After having my son nearly a year ago, I continued needing additional calories to fuel breastfeeding, which burns calories like you’re training for a marathon. (Not that I would know what that’s like, but I can imagine.) Though I no longer had food aversions, I was quite taken with the ability to eat dessert every day, multiple times, without gaining any weight.

Until recently, I didn’t think much of this new sugar habit. After all, I was still eating healthily overall, hadn’t gained any weight and mostly chose “nutritious” forms of sugar, such as dark chocolate, dried fruit and brown sugar oatmeal. Without realizing it though, I was also experiencing major energy drops during the day (which I would mend with a sugar fix), was routinely exhausted by the time I got home from work (which is really when the best part of my day begins), and my skin was looking – to put it bluntly – bad (no sugar coating here). Over the past few weeks it has crossed my mind that these issues may be connected to my increased sugar intake, so I attempted to cut back. But I kept giving into the habit. I had become addicted.

Thankfully, I received a sign this past weekend that motivated me to do something about this, as it supported my suspicion that sugar may be at the root of these issues. It was the story of another unlikely sugar addict’s experience with the sweet substance that I stumbled across and instantly knew I had needed to hear (or read). Her name is Sarah Wilson and she is now not only my quitting sugar inspiration, but also my blog crush. As I was reading her story, I couldn’t help but think how similar her situation and points of view are to my own. Only, I haven’t quit sugar yet. So I want to be like Sarah. I want to quit sugar, and to reap the benefits that she reaped. And then, once I get to the point that sugar is no longer an “addiction” for me, I will go back to my simple approaches of living a healthy lifestyle when it comes to…enjoying sugar.

I started the “I Quit Sugar” experiment two days ago, so it is too early to say whether it will make a difference. But I have high hopes and can’t wait to see where this takes me.

As I mentioned, I am still a firm believer that doing small things today will make a big difference in your health and happiness tomorrow. But this is a situation in which I feel the need to take more drastic measures. So please, wish me luck.

before you take a sip, think about this

If I asked you to drink a cleaning supply, would you?  What about a rust remover?  An engine cleaner?

What if I told you, you already did?

I’m not trying to disgust you.  Well maybe I am.  Because if you thought about what soda, coke, pop, whatever you prefer to call it, is capable of…maybe you would stop drinking it.  Or at least drink less of it.

According to many sources, soda has been used for many purposes other than a beverage for many years.  Among these purposes are cleaning blood off of accident sites, removing rust (you remember the school project of using coke to dissolve a rusty nail, right?), and cleaning engines.  You are probably getting the gist, but for an even longer list, read 51 Uses for Coca-Cola at WiseBread.

Do you love the stuff so much that you’re going to forget you read this?  The reality is, forgetting about these facts won’t make them any less real.  Nor will it change the fact that soda is also terrible for your health.  If you are interested in thinking about that too, read Soda’s Health Risks: How Bad Is It Really? at The Huffington Post.  If you are like many people though, thinking about the health effects may just increase your sense of guilt about drinking it, rather than get you to stop.

So, the next time you reach for a soda, coke, pop, or whatever you prefer to call it, think about just what that liquid is capable of doing before you take a sip.  Now, are you still going to enjoy it?