The Happiness Project 1: Sugar

20130104-175412.jpg

My fist mission for happiness was tackling my addiction to sugar and the three year old inside of me that just doesn’t want to go to bed.

Sugar

Sugar and I are best friends. Actually, scratch that. Sugar and I are in a codependent abusive relationship. The main culprit is the sugar I have in my tea and coffee. I drink a motherload of tea during the day (a minimum of 5cups) and always treat myself to a cup of coffee. I have a teaspoon of sugar (when I say teaspoon I actually mean a teaspoon and a bit) in every cup.

Now 6 teaspoons is the exact amount recommended as a daily intake for American women. A few things to note about this:

1) I am not American
2) this is the MINIMUM amount of sugar I consume in a day, not including the candy (I will come to this in a bit) or sugars in fruit, wine, peanut butter etc
3) I’m pretty sure this is a limit rather than a ‘you need to have at least…’
4) that amount of sugar is not ideal

The second major culprit is candy/confectionary/lollies/sweets (just eliminate depending on our country of origin). I got the feeling that I was thoughtlessly eating a bundle of lollies without even pausing for thought. Turns out I was right.

If I was hungry I reached for chocolate. If I was sleepy I reached for chocolate. If I was blogging I reached for chocolate. I could go on, but essentially I was just grabbing chocolate whenever I walked past the cupboard regardless of if I actually wanted it or not.

So, what happened?

It killed me not having sugar in my hot drinks. I just prefer the taste of tea when it is sweetened. And as for coffee – if it is good I love it without sugar, if it is bad sugar covered up a multitude of sins. So my Happiness a project means I no longer go to two coffee shops within walking distance of work because their coffee is utter rubbish.

The candy was a little easier. I packed away all the Christmas treats and only had a 80% proof block of dark chocolate in the pantry. So if I felt like candy I first asked if I was thirsty/hungry/lonely/sleepy/bored and if the answer was no to all of them, I had a bit of dark chocolate. It completely broke cycle for me and meant I was only eating it if I consciously wanted it.

I thought that this was going to be the part of my project that I just stuck with for the minimum amount of time – particularly because of the heartache of non-sweetened tea. But… It has done AMAZING things for my skin. Seriously. My skin has completely changed for the better and is clearer than ever. I am going to continue with the no sugar buzz for another month or so to see if the skin is a fluke.

Newly perfect skin? A completely unintended happiness boost.

1 Comment

  1. foodstinct
    January 20, 2013 / 2:44 pm

    Good for you. I read somewhere lately that if we (collectively) ruled out sugar and gluten from our diets that we’d knock a bunch of digestive complaints off the radar. Candida and IBS and stuff. Sorry to be vague, but you get my drift.