I'm so pleased to have the lovely Emily, a Cardiff based small business owner who also juggles working full time, guest blogging about her Sugar Free journey today.
There was a Bake Sale for Macmillan Cancer Support and at 10am when it opened, the majority of the office rushed off to pick their cake, some picked just one, others two or three which is fine, that's their choice. As I got up to have a look at the cakes baked by my colleagues, which I must add looked delicious, someone turned to me and said: 'what are you doing here? You CAN'T eat cake'. 'Well actually I can' I said, 'I just CHOOSE not to' and that's the difference (and actually I wanted to make a donation).
Now, it might have just been the choice of wording but I would never use the word 'can't' because that's what would make this feel like a restrictive diet which it isn't. I don't ever feel restricted or deprived of 'nice' food because I eat a nutritious, varied diet. I don't feel like I can't have things because I've made this a lifestyle change not a quick fix diet and I've learnt to enjoy it.
I started my Sugar free quest in February of this year which also marked the start of Lent, something I participate in every year not for religious reasons but because I find it's the best way to stop me from eating naughty foods like chocolate, biscuits, cakes, ice cream... You get the idea, but unfortunately I always end up back in the same cycle of eating naughty treats daily in large amounts as old habits slowly creep back.
In previous years during Lent I'd always have a list of things I couldn't eat but anything that wasn't on my list, happy days, my brain would go by the idea of 'eat as much as you'd like of anything that doesn't involve the five foods you gave up' (*rolls eyes at old self) which completely defeats the object if you want real results. Because of my attitude towards Sugar and my eating habits, there were minimal to no health benefits of doing Lent, minimal reductions in cravings as I still ate high carb and sugar in different forms and no weight loss/results at the gym even though I trained hard at least six times a week, which meant I was always disappointed. I'd restricted myself from things I like and for what reason? Probably control and to show I had willpower, but eventually when you restrict yourself you feel deprived and cave in which results in bingeing on ALL the things you didn't want to eat. This becomes a vicious circle because the more you restrict yourself, the more you end up bingeing and the more you binge, the more you restrict because of the guilt of bingeing. You see where this is going. Not only is this damaging to your body physically but also mentally.
Follow Emily's journey by following her instagram: @LCHF_Emily and her Blog: www.sugarfreeemily.wordpress.com