Success Story – Breaking Sugar Addiction

6 Jun

I just received an excellent comment from someone who just found my blog, but has broken her obsessive eating behaviours. It was such a well thought out comment I didn’t want it to go unnoticed hidden away in the comments section. So I decided to pay the respect that it clearly deserves and post it. Denise thank you for your comment (and I hope you don’t mind me doing this since I never asked).

I found your previous blog yesterday and am touched by your struggle. I was tempted to comment then but decided that since we had just met, I should get to know you better, so I’ve done some reading and when you popped up in my RSS reader today and I read your post, I thought perhaps now I can offer something constructive.

I have been where you are and have come out the other side. Here is my story: the first time I did Atkins (late 1990′s) I lost a lot of weight and felt great. Then I was brainwashed by the low-fat, healthy-whole-grain-and-fruit South Beach-style propaganda and over several years gained it all back except 1 lb. In January 2009, in complete desperation, I started Atkins Induction. I also, at that time, stopped eating everything that tasted sweet. The “Induction Flu” only lasted a couple of days, and then I felt fantastic. Except for some digestive issues, the cause of which I couldn’t exactly pin down. My personal trainer, who has celiac disease, suggested that perhaps gluten might be an issue, and after resisting that idea for a while, I decided to stop eating grains for 2 weeks (telling myself I can do anything for 2 weeks, then when it didn’t work, I could go back to my beloved Ezekial bread and Miller Lite). In 3 days I felt like a fog had lifted, one I had no idea was even there. Dammit!

It has been a year and a half since I gave up sweets (yes, that means sugar, fruit, artificial sweeteners, anything that tastes sweet), and a year since I stopped eating grain.

Do I miss them? No, actually. I don’t have any cravings and can happily pass up all the things I used to be addicted to. Here is why: I feel good. I want to continue to feel good. And I know that any time I want to feel like crap I can get back on the sugar-starch-cravings roller coaster, and I don’t want to do that. I don’t want to go through withdrawal again. Ever. And I’ve already proven to myself that’s what happens when I eat even just a small amount of sugar or starch. I’m sure you can figure out how I know this.

My digestive issues have resolved and I’ve lost 40 lbs. in the last year and a half, and am still losing slowly (very slowly) and figure I have about 40 lbs. to go to be at what I’m thinking would be a good goal weight.

The most interesting thing I’ve discovered is that in giving up sugar and starch, the “emotional eating” went with it. Speaking strictly for myself, I have concluded that it was not emotional eating, it was addiction, a very physical addiction to sugar and starch. Because it went away when I quit eating them. Here’s what also went away: being obsessed with food and thinking about the next thing I was going to eat even while I was eating; lusting after food; the horrible, shaky, lightheaded feeling that I was starving and absolutely, positively MUST eat something, anything, right this very minute or I am going to DIE; being unable to stop eating although I was uncomfortably full, even “stuffed”. All that is gone along with the sugar and starch. I am not saying it will work this way for anyone else, but what do you have to lose?

The longer I go on this path the better I feel. I absolutely do not need carbohydrates in my diet, although I do love my vegetables (non-starchy, of course), usually cooked using Paula Deen’s method: a pound of veggies (especially nice for French-cut green beans or any kind of greens), a half a pound of bacon, and a stick of butter. Add enough chicken broth so they don’t burn, and cook them until they’re as done as you like them.

I apologize for the length of this comment, but I wanted to share what has worked for me and perhaps, give you a bit of hope.

Great story of hope. Thank you.

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One Response to “Success Story – Breaking Sugar Addiction”

  1. Carla June 7, 2010 at 12:42 am #

    I can SO relate to what you and your commenter is saying. It IS the sugar that causes the emotional roller coaster and all those other things she described. I was also ashamed to admit on my blog that I was addicted to food, but I did and a lot of people have admitted the same. Processed foods are purposely created to get us to eat more of them, so we don’t have to feel bad that we have trouble avoiding them!

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