SFS: “So you’ve had no sugar AT ALL this week?”

 |  Personal, Updates

Gaz asked me the other night “so you’ve had no sugar AT ALL this week?”

And I said “well yes, I’ve had a banana, and they contain fructose”

And after some further discussion he went on to ask with a raised eyebrow, “who made up these rules anyway?”

Well, I did. I did because nowadays I see sugar added to absolutely everything. Meat, pies, pastries, bread, drinks, sauces and stocks. In fact, if last year’s challenge taught me anything it’s that virtually everything that you can find in a supermarket inside a wrapper has sugar added to it in one form or another (and yet we wonder why we have a problem with obesity? Anyway…)

I figure that given our dependency on sugar, and the way it’s hidden in things to play tricks on our brain to make us want more, giving up sugar would be a fairly tough challenge. Certainly more tough than just not drinking booze for a month (which actually was a breeze — don’t know what all the fuss is about) and probably equally as beneficial for my insides if not more so!

Obviously not all sugar is created equal, and lots of foods naturally turn to sugars in the body, so that’s where the “double standards” comes in. Banana – fine, because the sugar is not added as an ingredient; can of coke? Not so much. Of course that doesn’t answer why I’m avoiding fruit juices as well – that’s more of a distaste for the juicing fad which sees a bucketload of high fibre fruit and veg (yay!) blitzed into a mushy sugary mess (boo!) but let’s not upset the diet and “lifestyle” bloggers here by dissing smoothies ;)

So what’s the shiz with my actual progress? Well, so far so good. I’m not seeing any noticeable withdrawal symptoms, nor any obvious weight loss. I’ve had a couple of random cravings, some of which are probably hormone-fueled and some my habit of comfort eating during times of stress, but have managed to completely avoid all obvious sugar sources. I did have one potential slip-up on Sunday where I consumed some salad which had a smidgen of dressing on that PROBABLY had sugar in, but I can’t be sure so am not counting it as a failure. I’ll let you lot decide if that’s cheating or not :p

Jem Turner jem@jemjabella.co.uk +44(0)7521056376

4 comments so far

  1. Macca said:

    I think the problem with smoothies is that it’s too much. OK you have the fibre and stuff so it’s like eating whole fruit, but if you blend a bunch of bananas and strawberries for example then you’re getting way more fruit than you typically need in a day let alone the time it took you to drink it. Another example of this blending phenomenon is when I go get a milkshake from Shakeaway. They put two chocolate bars and a shitload of ice cream and milk in those, and I drink them in five minutes and wonder why I feel sick. Now I’m not adverse to eating chocolate bars and ice cream, but all of that in one sitting?! It’s too much!

    • Jem said:

      Not just that, but from what I was reading, fructose doesn’t signal to the brain when you’re full like glucose does so you can massively overeat on smoothies without the same “STOP” warning you’d get eating normal foods?*

      * may be making that up ;)

        • Macca said:

          Completely true, but not all fruits have higher levels of fructose than glucose. Banana is ‘safe’ because its glucose levels are much higher than fructose, but apples and pears are much higher in fructose than glucose (and quite high in fructose in general). (I spent some time mulling over this because fructose is a common IBS trigger.) So in theory drinking a banana and strawberry smoothie ~should~ signal your stomach that you don’t need to eat more (and isn’t as bad as drinking an apple smoothie because it contains less fructose to begin with) but I’d wager it takes longer for that to happen than the time it takes to gulp down the aforementioned smoothie, so you can still easily overeat smoothies even if you use low fructose ingredients. :P