Last week, I briefly reflected on the similar effects sugar has on our minds in comparison to illegal drugs like heroin. Although we are only a sample size of two, let me and my fiancée add our names to the evidence.
On Saturday, we hit rock bottom.
The both of us already have particular times of the day we crave sugar the most, but whenever stress, depression, or anxiety starts to kick in, our need goes into overdrive.
This just so happened to occur on the same day, at the same time, for the both of us. We immediately went into eloquent prose about all of the delectable, heavenly sweets we weren’t allowed to touch and to be frank, if we weren’t using each other as a crutch, we would have caved.
All I could think about was just getting “a little something” to tie me over for the final two weeks and how it would be alright if I slipped, but didn’t fall. However, I would be falling in three ways:
- I would be contradicting my belief in why these monthly challenges are so important and breaking the very rules I established.
- I would not be supporting my accountability partner, which would completely ruin partnerships in the future; failure is contagious.
- I would be failing you, my readers, who might be sticking it out with me this month or looking to use my experience as support to pursue their own challenges.
With all of these great checks in place, my fiancée and I let our frustrations fade away, and made it to Sunday undeterred. Whether we planned it or not, one of our best strategies so far has been to express our emotions to the fullest.
We invite communicating our mental struggle and even make a game out of it. For example, we spent one of our nights listing out which sweets we would want to eat right at that moment if we had the freedom to do so. For me, my top three options were milk and cookies, milk and cookies, and milk and cookies. For my fiancée, she had her mind focused on chocolate (nothing added), sugary coffees/teas, and any kind of baked good.
DROP THE ARTIFICIAL SWEETENERS
Her second ranking temptation is what I want to discuss today. Some of the most popular beverages in the food industry are so loaded with added sugars that it’s no wonder the sharp increase in sugar consumption we have seen the past three decades.
Although sugar is an enormous temptation of mine, one thing I never touch, except for the rare order of apple juice on an airplane, are sugary drinks. Originally stemming from my high school diversion from caffeine, I stay far away from anything that isn’t water or milk.
The cliché these days is “sacrifice the coffee to increase your savings,” but there are so many things missed in this simple phrase that I would like to add my own version.
That probably won’t catch on, but it’s a lot more accurate and adds a lot more incentive to make the switch. Our bodies need water and our minds want everything else. Take some stress out of your day and opt for the beverage that will, you know, keep you alive.