Posts tagged ‘sugar’

Falling Off the Dieting Wagon..For Good!

Hi friends,

Yes, I know I’ve neglected you since Thanksgiving. It’s been crazy hectic in my life, and I needed to take a little break and get things in order. I’d rather write when I’m feeling inspired rather than rush to put something together just for the sake of it.

Today, I have a VERY important annoucement. I am OFF dieting. Yup, you heard me. O-F-F D-I-E-T-I-N-G. No more. Nada. And guess what else is really shocking? I’ve been eating sugar. Yup. I’ve been eating sugar EVERY DAY for the past 2 weeks and it’s been AWESOME. Seriously, I LOVE chocolate. I forgot how much. Do you want to know how many times I’ve had a binge? NONE. Zip.  And do you want to know how happy I am? Extremely. Immensely. So happy I want to run around nekkid. (not really, but you get the point)

The Universe delivered the book “Intuitive Eating” into my hands about 3 weeks ago.  This book “spoke” to me, and related to me, in ways that were so spot in it was spooky. I started crying after I read the Introduction. I recognize, from reading, that  my chronic dieting, and dieting mindset, has really held me back. At points, when reading, I was so shocked that I could let my thinking get so far off course.  So, I have started my path as an intuitive eater, which means, in a nutshell, that I listen to my  body for what it wants, and I give it exactly that. I eat when I’m hungry, stop when I’m full, and give myself permission to eat whenever and whatever I want (there are no good and bad foods).

The most important factor, which is very strange to me, is that weight loss is NOT the goal. Rather, gently letting your body reach it’s natural weight is the goal. It takes time…months, maybe even a year. But your body knows best, (and if you let it have whatever it wants, it will naturally want healthy foods, which luckily I enjoy). I must admit, I have no clue what my natural body weight even IS. I lost a lot of weight in college (through proper diet and exercise) and then after college, spent the years dieting, restricting myself  (and binging, too) and spending hours in the gym. I kept that up for a good long while..until I couldn’t any longer. Fast forward to now..after a very tough semester and turning to food to help me get through the stress, I’m heavier than I have been in years. So who knows. But the major shift, again, is actually NOT CARING. I am more in love with living a life peacefully with food than fitting into a super small size.

So, this is my new adventure, and I’m giving it everything I’ve got. I went to the grocery store last night and allowed myself to buy whatever looked good. In addition to my favorites (which are healthy), i picked up Salt and Vinegar potato chips, gluten free fig newtons, laughing cow cheese, chocolate jello pudding, and the most amazing chocolate ever–Lindt dark chocolate with sea salt. And now that I’ve been allowing myself to have these foods around the house, they kinda lose their allure. I had one square of chocolate, savored it,  and I was satisfied. Imagine that.

So, won’t you please join me on my path to eating intuitively. If my journey is anything like other “IE” eaters, it’s going to be bumpy and rocky. Two steps forward and one step back. It will take time. But, for me, I see a shift already. I feel like a HUGE weight has been lifted off my shoulders and I can stop putting pressure on myself to be the “perfect” eater. Now, I can just be.

 Check out the website and feel free to ask me any questions about the process.  For your reference, below are the 10 guidelines for Intuitive Eating, taken from the website.

Intuitive Eating Principles

1. Reject the Diet Mentality Throw out the diet books and magazine articles that offer you false hope of losing weight quickly, easily, and permanently. Get angry at the lies that have led you to feel as if you were a failure every time a new diet stopped working and you gained back all of the weight. If you allow even one small hope to linger that a new and better diet might be lurking around the corner, it will prevent you from being free to rediscover Intuitive Eating.

2. Honor Your Hunger Keep your body biologically fed with adequate energy and carbohydrates. Otherwise you can trigger a primal drive to overeat. Once you reach the moment of excessive hunger, all intentions of moderate, conscious eating are fleeting and irrelevant. Learning to honor this first biological signal sets the stage for re-building trust with yourself and food.

3. Make Peace with Food Call a truce, stop the food fight! Give yourself unconditional permission to eat. If you tell yourself that you can’t or shouldn’t have a particular food, it can lead to intense feelings of deprivation that build into uncontrollable cravings and, often, bingeing When you finally “give-in” to your forbidden food, eating will be experienced with such intensity, it usually results in Last Supper overeating, and overwhelming guilt.

4. Challenge the Food Police .Scream a loud “NO” to thoughts in your head that declare you’re “good” for eating under 1000 calories or “bad” because you ate a piece of chocolate cake. The Food Police monitor the unreasonable rules that dieting has created . The police station is housed deep in your psyche, and its loud speaker shouts negative barbs, hopeless phrases, and guilt-provoking indictments. Chasing the Food Police away is a critical step in returning to Intuitive Eating.


 5. Respect Your Fullness Listen for the body signals that tell you that you are no longer hungry. Observe the signs that show that you’re comfortably full. Pause in the middle of a meal or food and ask yourself how the food tastes, and what is your current fullness level?


6. Discover the Satisfaction Factor The Japanese have the wisdom to promote pleasure as one of their goals of healthy living In our fury to be thin and healthy, we often overlook one of the most basic gifts of existence–the pleasure and satisfaction that can be found in the eating experience. When you eat what you really want, in an environment that is inviting and conducive, the pleasure you derive will be a powerful force in helping you feel satisfied and content. By providing this experience for yourself, you will find that it takes much less food to decide you’ve had “enough”.


7. Honor Your Feelings Without Using Food Find ways to comfort , nurture, distract, and resolve your issues without using food. Anxiety, loneliness, boredom, anger are emotions we all experience throughout life. Each has its own trigger, and each has its own appeasement. Food won’t fix any of these feelings. It may comfort for the short term, distract from the pain, or even numb you into a food hangover. But food won’t solve the problem. If anything, eating for an emotional hunger will only make you feel worse in the long run. You’ll ultimately have to deal with the source of the emotion, as well as the discomfort of overeating.

8. Respect Your Body Accept your genetic blueprint. Just as a person with a shoe size of eight would not expect to realistically squeeze into a size six, it is equally as futile (and uncomfortable) to have the same expectation with body size. But mostly, respect your body, so you can feel better about who you are. It’s hard to reject the diet mentality if you are unrealistic and overly critical about your body shape.


9. Exercise–Feel the Difference Forget militant exercise. Just get active and feel the difference. Shift your focus to how it feels to move your body, rather than the calorie burning effect of exercise. If you focus on how you feel from working out, such as energized, it can make the difference between rolling out of bed for a brisk morning walk or hitting the snooze alarm. If when you wake up, your only goal is to lose weight, it’s usually not a motivating factor in that moment of time.


10 Honor Your Health–Gentle Nutrition Make food choices that honor your health and tastebuds while making you feel well. Remember that you don’t have to eat a perfect diet to be healthy. You will not suddenly get a nutrient deficiency or gain weight from one snack, one meal, or one day of eating. It’s what you eat consistently over time that matters, progress not perfection is what counts

December 8, 2009 at 6:50 pm 5 comments

Friday Nibbles

Here we are again. Another Friday…why is time passing WAYYYY too quickly?

To those celebrating Rosh Hashana, Happy New Year!

As you know, eating healthy isn’t always easy. To make it more confusing, some foods may SEEM healthy but in reality are trainwrecks for your waistline.  Check out this list and see if you eat any of these “good for you” foods (which are just plain ol crap)

Continuing the trend, here are more seemingly healthy foods that really aren’t that healthy!

You know I love a good bacteria story since taking (and rocking!)  my microbiology class this summer. Check out the latest findings on where bacteria are lurking!  Oh, and on a side note: I learned yesterday that our body has approximately 100 trillion cells. And we have up to 4x as much BACTERIA in/on our body. Crazy!

Recent studies show that what you eat, and not necessarily your genetics, contribute more to obesity.

My favorite topic: sugar! More tips on how to cut it from your diet.

Have a great weekend!

September 18, 2009 at 3:40 pm Leave a comment

Are you Pouring on the Pounds?


My post featured at the Naked Apartments Blog yesterday:

We are all aware that our country is experiencing an obesity epidemic of gargantuan proportions. As New Yorkers we think we’re different (and, let’s be honest, better) than the rest of the world, but sadly in this case we are not. Although we live in the most walkable city in the country and for the most part can pull off spandex and ankle booties, the truth is that we too are in the crisis.

Our beloved city has watched as our waist size has increased and finally is putting her Christian Laboutin heel down! New York City is taking a stand with a new health campaign.  First topic—sugary beverages.

Did you know that Americans are consuming on average 200-300 more calories PER DAY than we did 30 years ago? More than half of these calories come from sugary beverages, such as soda, iced teas, and sports drinks.The New York Health Department surveyed adult New Yorkers about their consumption of these drinks and the results showed that more than 2 million down at least one sugar-laden drink each day. That’s on average an extra 250 calories, and that adds up….quickly! Did you know that a 20oz Cola contains over 15 teaspoons of sugar? Yikes!

Now is the time to take a look at your diet and see what types of beverages you enjoy.  If you eat healthily and work out yet can’t figure out why the pounds aren’t dropping, take a look at what you are drinking. If sweetened beverages play a role in your day-to-day diet they might be the culprit. Especially if you enjoy alcohol during Happy Hours or on the weekend, it can all add up.

So, what can we do to limit sweetened-beverages?

*The best change we can make is drinking water, plain and simple.  As New Yorkers, we are lucky enough to enjoy safe, great tasting tap water.  But if you just can’t stomach it, try adding a squeeze of citrus, slices or strawberries, cucumber, or mint. Get creative!

*Use seltzer as a vehicle. If you don’t like plain Club Soda, try adding a splash of fruit juice to sweeten.  And for all the vodka tonic drinkers, drop the tonic and use seltzer instead (Tonic is just carbonated water with sugar and quinine)

*Wean yourself off of your soda habit slowly.  No need to go cold turkey. Start by diluting your soda a bit with fizzy seltzer, and as time progresses, add more seltzer and less soda. In a few weeks, you’ll be surprised at how easy the switch was!

*Check the sugar amounts in your drinks. I’m amazed at how much sugar sports drinks, smoothies, and coffee drinks contain. I’m talking teaspoons of sugar per drink!  You don’t want that, do you?

And if those tips don’t help you, just take a long, good look at the new advertisement (featured above). It’s shock value and vomit-inducing graphics might be enough to stop you.

Come on New Yorkers! Let’s make our city proud!

September 17, 2009 at 5:37 pm 1 comment

The Sugar Devil Cometh

How innocent you look!

How innocent you look!

Happy Monday!  I hope you had a great weekend!

I had an incredible time in Washington DC visiting our best friends who have a baby due in January. It was amazing to see my friend pregnant and glowing.  I had the most relaxing weekend I’ve had in awhile which was very much needed since school started last week. We hung out, went to Old Town Alexandria (Matt and I bought some super funky art by John Hung Ha) and ate some great meals.

For the record, I have officially broken my two months living a sugar free life (in the form of sweets).  We went to this fabulous pizza restaurant called 2 Amy’s and I enjoyed cheese, wine, and lots of pizza.  My blood sugar was soaring from the pizza and wine, and I was a bit tipsy also, so when a friend suggested gelato for dessert I went for it.

We went to Dolcezzo in Georgetown for the best gelato I’ve had since my honeymoon in Italy. It was definitely worth it. But I felt SO SICK afterwards…I felt like I was literally drugged (well, sugar is a drug, after all).  My energy plummeted within a half an hour. The last thing I remember was all of us laying on the bed, watching Man vs. Wild, while I was going in and out of consciousness. I faintly recall opening my eyes to see Bear Grylls drinking blood and eating the raw heart of some beast in the Arctic Circle. But that’s all I remember. I woke up with a hangover from hell.

I mustered up some motivation the next morning to work out and get my sweat on. But I felt like crap. I was grumpy, irritable, and just plain shocked that chocolate ice cream could do this to me (But it was also the combination of pizza, wine, and ice cream…all sugars)

Anyway, I ate very carefully on Sunday, lots of protein and vegetables and TONS of water.  I’m feeling better today, but I’ve made a decision that I have to honor my body and make choices that are going to better myself. Eating sugar and refined carbs (like bread, pasta, etc) makes me feel like crap. Plain and simple. And I don’t want, or deserve, to feel like that.

So starting yesterday, I’ve made a pact with myself to get back on track.  To me, that means slowing down, listening to my body, stopping when I’m full, watching my portion sizes, and cutting out the foods that don’t make me feel fabulous. It sounds easier than it is, I promise. I’m not following a set diet plan, but instead listening to my inner compass to tell me what it needs. Wish me luck!

I encourage you to use my experience and examine your own relationship with sugar, refined carbs, and artificial sweeteners. Have you ever tried to cut them out for a few days? A week?  Do you think you might have more energy? Lose those last few pounds? I’d love to hear about your experiences with sugar!

September 14, 2009 at 1:51 pm Leave a comment

Deep Fried Heart Attack

Can you guess what this is?

Can you guess what this is?

I hope you had a great Labor Day weekend. Matt and I had an incredible weekend in Cape Cod (Chatham) for a friend’s wedding. The town was charming (Berkshires-by-the-sea I like to call it), the weather amazing, and the food…well, the food was fabulous.  Matt enjoyed a super fresh (we ate it at the fishing pier) lobster roll TWICE this weekend and needless to say, he was in heaven.

I certainly indulged, too. I ate bread. And potato chips (I havent had a chip in years!). And french fries. No sweets, but lots of quickie, refined carbs that wreck havoc on my body just as sweet sugar does.  I tried to spend the day yesterday getting myself back on track, but it backfired. My body wanted those “quickie” carbs, and I ended up binging on these raw agave sweetened crackers. In the past, I would have beaten myself up over my lack of willpower, but I recognized that my body (and eating habits) are seriously out of wack and it’s just going to take some time to get back to my normal routine.

Today I feel a little grumpy as I think I’m going through a sugar-like withdrawl. It’s the same feeling I had when I kicked sugar a few months back. Nothing to do but drink lots of water, eat wholesome foods, and steer clear of any refined carbohydrate. Sigh.

However, just as I was feeling pretty crappy Matt came to my rescue and made me feel so much better.  Because even if I indulged in foods that weren’t so good for me, in the scheme of things they weren’t that bad.

At least I didn’t eat THIS.  Now THAT’S BAD! I mean, REALLY bad. It makes a french fry look as healthy as a vegetable!

September 8, 2009 at 4:06 pm Leave a comment

Labor Day Weekend Nibble’s

I hope you enjoy a nice LONG weekend! I’m heading to Cape Cod for a wedding, and I couldn’t be more excited. I haven’t been to the Cape since I was a little girl. I’m also excited for the road trip we have ahead of us, and the 17 hour music mix that Matt has expertly crafted. Matt, I know, is excited to eat his weight in lobster rolls and fried seafood, as I lovingly watch and cheer him on.

Here are this week’s links:

The American Heart Association made a public announcement telling people to cut their sugar intake. YES! (Yours truly has been sugar free for over 2 months now!!!)

New York is targeting the beverage industry as major contributors of sugar to our diet. Have you seen these ads?

Another drawback to obesity: you get dumber!

Stick to whole foods, and ignore the ridiculous claims on packaged goods. It’s all about the marketing!

Some great tips on how to cut the sugar out of your life.

And some tips on how to cut 100 calories out of your diet. It all adds up!

Another reason to downward dog-yoga can help your eating!

Do you know your stomach? I mean, really know it? Take this fun quiz and find out!

I swear there is something in the water, as many of my friends have become pregnant recently. While I’m not ready yet, I can still prepare my body for pregnancy

September 4, 2009 at 2:33 pm 2 comments

Hidden Sugars

Can you spot the sugars? I count 8!

Can you spot the sugars? I count 8!

If you’ve been reading Cake & Carrots, you know I’m a fan of Dr. David Kessler’s book “The End of Overeating.”  Check out this eye-opening fact that food companies don’t want you to know:

Federal guidelines dictate that sugar must be listed first on a nutrition label if the food contains more sugar than any other ingredient.  Makes sense, right?   However, if a food contains SEVERAL types of sweeteners, they can be listed SEPARATELY, and this pushes each sweetener further down the list on the nutritional label. 

 An example is breakfast cereals, which most often have a combination of sugar, brown sugar, fructose, high-fructose corn syrup, honey, and molasses (yes, ALL of that in one cereal).  Food makers do this so when you look at the label, you don’t see sugar as the first ingredient.  The nutrition label, instead, will look something like this:

 Rice, dried blueberries [blueberries, high fructose corn syrup, glycerol, safflower oil, citric acid, potassium sorbate (preservative, natural flavor], whole grain rolled oats, whole grain wheat, degermed yellow corn meal, brown sugar, high oleic vegetable oil, almonds, rice flour, salt, malted corn and barley syrup, corn syrup…

 Can you spot the sugars?  You see my point.   

As an aside, to read some of the main lessons from the book, click here.

August 11, 2009 at 1:26 pm 1 comment

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