No Sugar for 53 Days!

So today marks day one of fifty-three without refined sugar, and if you’re with me on this little challenge, hip hip hooray! Let me preface by saying that, kinda like my motto with all things in yoga, health, and general life: a little is better than none at all. If you decide to make this challenge about lessening your refined sugar intake, and beginning to educate yourself and learn more about alternative ways to get a sweet fix, POWER YOU YOU MY BOTHERS AND SISTERS! The idea for this challenge came up in one of my classes about a month ago during a conversation about the addictive quality of sugar… as I joke, I have a few “reverse gateway” recipes that helped me kick a bad habit with sugar a few years ago, but in the beginning it was tough! And as it turns out, there’s a reason for that: Sugar is a highly addictive substance. As in, it lights up the same part of your brain as cocaine. Eeesh. See what WebMD has to say about it.

SO! I hope a few of you are still with me in this little no-sugar quest. First tasks?
Arm yourself from cravings by shopping for some good cheater substitutes, and be willing to read the labels of any packaged food that you buy. Sugar gets added to a LOT of foods because our brains and tastebuds are wired to like things like sugar and fat. Back when we used to have to hunt and gather for survival, these tastes were indicators of high-calorie foods. This primal instinct is no longer necessary in our modern world, but our bodies have yet to catch up to that notion, and food companies got smart that if they add sugar, you’re more likely to like their product and buy it again.

These first few days are likely to be the hardest, and in keeping with my practical approach to improving health, its a good idea to find cheater substitutes that you actually like, and therefor are most likely to use. Keep in mind: Start by adding foods you like which don’t have sugar to your day, instead of focusing on cutting out the sugary foods you crave.

Buuuuuut, you’re likely to hit a craving or two, so here’s a few cheater foods / ingredients to arm yourself with:

*Dates (pitted, un-pitted, cut up whole…. you pick which you like. I usually go for whole un-pitted because I don’t have to spend time pitting, but they stay moist as whole dates.)
*Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
*Real Vanilla Extract
*Coconut Oil
*Dried **unsweetened** Coconut (read the label!)
*Cinnamon, Nutmeg, & Ginger spices
*Oranges, Magoes, Bananas, Pineapple
*Maple Syrup

In the coming days and weeks, I’ll be sharing some recipes that you can try at home for those moments when your cravings are owning you.

My sister-the-doc would also tell you that getting refined sugar out of your diet IS important, but equally important is understanding that this effort should be made with full understanding that just replacing sugar with equal substitutes of maple syrup and honey is not really hitting the point. The point is to re-wire your brain to enjoy a diet with less sugar, which can only happen if you’re willing and ready to make a change, knowing that the process to getting there will be challenging, and may include some withdrawal.

So making this effort for change as a group, and telling people around you who can help you stick to your goal are helpful tools! Tell your partner, spouse, best friend, boss…. whomever you trust to help you stick to your guns! Or email me 🙂



  1. Calley Bliss says:

    Yessssss, Susan let me know if you try any recipes that I should post!


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