This is me and Michael Stipe in 2003. Doesn't he look happy? HA! Seriously though. Every time I see this pic, my eyes zero in at my midsection.
I think: We're two vegans. But one does not look like the other. Why?
A couple weeks ago, Carbzy blogged about the 15 grams of sugar a day diet. I decided to try it out. Since then, I have had a revelation.
I have been eating a shitload of sugar.
It was all unrefined. But it was still sugar. When excess sugar and carbs go into the body, they stick. They stick to the belly.
And man, do I have some excess.
Personally - I think sugar is addictive. You can read about the debate here. All I can do is add my own testimony.
Five years ago, I thought I was hypoglycemic. Once I went off refined carbs and sugars, the hypoglycemia disappeared. I got a little thinner.
(That's my little sister copping a feel on my curves...)
Then I went off gluten. A celiac friend told me that gluten can mess with your blood sugar. I knew I had blood sugar problems, heart palpitations after I ate anything with sugar in it. Plus I thought it might help my guts.
It did. And I got a little thinner.
The Mom Jeans help, trust me.
For a while now, I have been using unrefined sugar. But whether it's maple syrup, raw honey, fruit, or agave - a little taste and I agg for the stuff. Mornings after long nights of drinking? I WANT PANCAKES. All the sugar from the night before is starting to leave my body. My body is addicted and wants more.
One thing I've learned from nutritionist Megan Telpner is that when your body craves a food, it's often not good for you. Cravings are also signs that your body is deficient in some nutrient. For example, chicks crave chocolate and sugar before their periods, because their bodies need more iron and protein.
Interestingly, there is a substantial amount of iron in raw cacao.
I've had it all - the hypoglycemia, the heart palpitations, the cravings and the fat bloated gut. Even as a vegan, gluten-free, refined sugar-free health food nazi, I've been eating too much sugar. Want to see?
A Day in the Life of FG
OJ with Hot Cereal and Almond Butter
(24 grams of sugar)
(24 grams of sugar)
Greens with Mushrooms and Nut Butter Sauce
(I'm okay here!)
3 PM Snack
(18 grams of sugar)
Sweet potato and roasted veggies with 2 glasses of vino
(20 grams of sugar)
I was consuming one and a half soda's worth of sugar BEFORE LUNCH.
By the end of the day? Four sodas.
No wonder I got a big belly.
This past week, I started a revolution! I looked to siphon the sugar out of my diet, meal by meal. And man, I LOVE a challenge. It was super fun.
Instead of OJ...
... I had a glass of lemon water with stevia!
Instead of 1/4 cup of applesauce in my raw oatmeal...
... I made it with 1 Tablespoon of applesauce
and 1-2 Tablespoons of raw almond butter!
Instead of coconut water...
... I had Kombucha!
Instead of making smoothies with Edenblend...
... I had Original-flavor Coconut Milk Kefir!!!
Instead of vino...
... I had Dandy Blend.
Most days, I clocked in at under 15 grams of sugar.
Some, I ate around 20 or 30. Those were the days I felt a little under the weather and wanted to pimp my immune system with a Vita Coco. But still - 20 sugars? That's progress!
I don't wanna knock the high sugar foods that I mentioned above. There are so many wonderful benefits of some of those sugary foods. Like I've said - NOTHING cures a cold like coconut water.
Right now, I'm at the end of my rope. I work out almost every single day. I'm on a vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, high raw, high fiber diet. And I'm still not looking the way I want to. I'm searching for optimum health here. Healthy people look healthy.
I don't look as healthy as I should for how I eat.
It's gotta be the sugars.
What about you guys? Are you as self conscious as me? In what ways are you trying to feel better, healthier? I wanna know!