I’m trying to avoid sugar.

After watching the Documentary “Fed Up,” I have really been trying to avoid added sugar in my diet. At the end of the film, there is a 10-day No-Sugar Challenge that I truly think everyone should try, not for a “diet,” not to lose weight, not to feel superior to your sugar-eating friends, but just to become fully aware of the foods you are eating and exactly what you are putting into your body. I am not done the 10-day challenge yet, but I thought I would share some eats along the way and I will be doing a full recap later this week!

I literally printed the poster above and posted it on the side of my fridge so that I could reference it when I was checking food labels of the past week. I honestly didn’t know that sugar could come in so many forms AND that it was essentially all treated the same way by the body. I also didn’t know that there is sugar in EVERYTHING. My family and I tend to eat fairly healthy, and we cook 90% of our meals at home, but there were still items in our fridge that mysteriously had a lot more sugar than they probably should, or at least than they would if they were entirely homemade. 

Thank heaven this does not have any added sugar. 

As for processed foods, I try not to eat a ton. I eat whole grains, beans, lentils, tons of vegetables including leafy greens and root vegetables like squash. In an effort to see how easy it was to find food products without added sugar, I discovered a few, but that’s it, only a few. Most of the crackers on a store shelf have added sugar. We typically buy “Wheat Thins” and sugar is the third ingredient in those… THIRD. I did find some awesome alternatives. Who knew that Triscuits (the original and low-sodium varieties only) only have three ingredients – none of which is sugar!

And if you were ever thinking, “maybe I should give my taste buds a break and just allow them to taste cardboard nonethingness in the form of a cracker,” you can try these.

I found that Silver Hills Squirrelly bread is one of the only ones sold without added sugar. There is 1g of sugar on the Nutrition Facts table and that comes from raisins – the only way they sweeten this bread! I think raisins are a much healthier alternative to cane sugar and high fructose corn syrup.

My new go-to cereals are Shredded Wheat & Bran and puffed wheat. I don’t eat them with soy or almond milk because the kind in my fridge contained sugar. I added skim milk instead. Sprinkling cinnamon on them is delicious!

I have been enjoying a LOT of quinoa salads. You can basically add any vegetable to quinoa, and toss it with an avocado or some balsamic vinegar, and you have a filling and yummy meal! I have worked most nights the past couple of weeks, so this makes a great meal to pack for work. 

In full disclosure, I have NOT cut out fruit from my diet. I would not survive. Actually, I would probably survive, but I would be miserable. The challenge initiated in the documentary and the challenge I chose to take part in are added sugar elimination diets. Fruit contains no added sugar. Fruit juice – yes, dried fruit – sometimes, but natural, whole fruit does not and it is a major staple in my diet. 

I hadn’t really told anyone that I was doing a 10-day no-sugar challenge, except my immediate family of course, because it didn’t change my normal day-to-day meals a whole lot and I figured it would appear to most people like a crash diet that leaves you with cabbage and tomatoes to eat. 

I can’t wait to write a full recap of my 10-day challenge because it has really been an eye-opening experience. My home is a pretty supportive environment for a no-sugar lifestyle but I have come to find that the rest of the world is not. The amount of time I spent hunting for a bread with no added sugar proved just that! I have a few more days to go, and I haven’t faded into the abyss without a substantial amount of sugar in my diet, so I have a feeling they were onto something in that documentary

I hope everyone enjoyed their Remembrance Day/Veteran’s Day and made their way to a ceremony where they live. Or at least took a moment of silence at some point in the day. I attended the chilly St. Albert ceremony and it gets to me every year. Yes, that is my dad in the front!

Have you tried any elimination diets?

What is the funniest/most ridiculous diet or eating plan you have heard about?

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