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Thursday, March 10, 2011

Going Sugar Free

Not too happy for all the cake!
First off, I work for a great company. They have these monthly health challenges and we get monetary compensation for following through. One of the challenges was Sugar Free. However, they stepped us into it using a structured approach. I think this approach would be helpful for anyone trying to "diet" or just improve their health.

The first month's goal was to increase water and to "stop the pop". They limited us to one can of diet soda a day. I found this first month fairly easy as I only drink diet soda. I made the goal to push myself to only 2-3 cans of diet soda a week.

The second month's goal was to continue the challenges from the first month of more water and no soda. Then we added 5 servings of fruit or vegetables and no added sugars or sweets (except one "free day" a week).

I found that once I had mostly stopped soda, I didn't crave chocolate or sweets near as much as I did before. I also noticed that the increased fruit made my after-dinner dessert habit more bearable. Instead of ice cream every night, I have switched to a fruit smoothie with almond milk or yogurt with fresh fruit.

One other thing that made the no extra sugar a much easier thing for me is that I already don't eat gluten products, like donuts, cakes, or cookies. I know that you can buy all of these items gluten-free, but it is more cost effective to make them home made and I just don't have the time or motivation to make them. Once in a while, Jeff will make me waffles and I put raspberry preserves on them and that fills my cake craving.

Next month, we're adding a half hour to an hour of exercise. That will be the challenge that pushes me to change. Wish us luck!

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