Tuesday, October 31, 2006

I know you're tired. And evil.

A friend talked me into a moratorium on sugar last month, and although I can't say I've held rigidly in the ban, I have been pretty darn good. This morning I put a half-eaten birthday cake in the garbage and moved an unopened-for-three-days bag of Snickers to the side to get the carton of almonds in the back of the cupboard. And then I sat down with my unsweetened coffee and the morning paper and said to myself, "What the hell is wrong with me? Why does eating healthy feel like punishment?"

It shouldn't, of course. I should revel in my new-found energy levels (not) and the variety in my diet (ha) and weight that just falls off (of what?). But to be honest, aside from the fact that coffee sucks without a chocolate side salad, I don't really notice a difference. I tell everyone that it feels great to be rid of the sleepy jags in the late afternoon and that we're eating so much better at home, but I'm a liar. It doesn't feel different, and it kind of sucks, and Halloween sucks! It does. I'm picturing the loot Teeners and Pooey are going to bring home tonight (why do people give toddlers extra candy?), and I'm going to sit there, staring at my one true inanimate love and deny myself the consummation of passion. If I could, I would totally have sex with Reeses Peanut Butter Cups, but like our buddies in the Christian right, I will abstain because that's what good, self-loathing people do. And then I'll lie to my friends and say how great it is to abstain and I'll go picket See's Candy with grotesque pictures of empty candy wrappers and condemn people leaving the store for their weak moral fiber. Giving in to The Sugar is evil.

And that's what it's come down to. Good versus evil. Evil people eat chocolate and like it. Good people eat dried fruit and dream of endless rolling fields of store-bought frosting, but feel really guilty about it and tell everyone else that they're bad. You're all bad and I bet you're really low on energy! Shame on you. For being low on energy. Bad. Very bad. You Sugar-lover.


Blogger V said...

Dark chocolate is good for you. Lots of anti-oxidants. At least that the story I'm stickin' to. Eat evil yet be happy and good. :)

10/31/2006 8:36 AM  
Blogger Mrs. Harridan said...

Oh my God, that must be near-impossible at this time of year. I am VERY impressed! I was able to switch to unsweetened iced tea, but coffee is a no-go. Gotta have the sugar.

If you wouldn't fall off the wagon, maybe you could allow yourself one Reese's cup?

10/31/2006 8:40 AM  
Anonymous TB said...

Who eats a half pound of cheese in a sitting? (not me and I do not wash it down with chocolate milk either)

10/31/2006 9:13 AM  
Blogger meno said...

I...i...i'm so ashamed. I had tea with honey this morning.
I am now a "good self-loathing" person. (Love that line)
You are a shining example to all of us.

10/31/2006 9:17 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Confessions of a sugar addict... I swore off sugar before I got pregnant with my first child. The first three days were like my own personal version of the movie Trainspotting. It was hell. I was home alone and at one point I had all the kitchen cabinets open and I was yellling, "SUGAR!!!!!!!" I wish someone had filmed me because, well damn. I was off it for five months and it really did make me feel better, but then I got pregnant and NEEDED sugar. Fast forward to the maternity ward... a nurse told me about a dietary supplement called Chromium Picolonate. It helps manage your insulin somehow. I've been taking it ever since I stopped nursing and I think it helps me not crave sugar. Yippee!

10/31/2006 9:31 AM  
Blogger Arabella said...

Far be it from me to sabotage a friend's personal diet choices.


While I can be a self-loathing person in many, many endeavors, in the absence of a compelling medical reason, food is not something with which I self-sacrifice. I think it's too great a joy in life.

10/31/2006 10:25 AM  
Blogger mamalujo1 said...

All this time I've been trying to figure out good and evil and you nail it.

Go ahead, eat the sugar, baby. You now you want it.

10/31/2006 11:22 AM  
Blogger Tink said...

*Waves a Snickers bar around* Mmmm, chocolately goodness. Crunchy. Chewy. Yummy. Suuuuugar!How does that saying go, "Evil loves company?"

Works for me.

10/31/2006 1:08 PM  
Blogger Lucia said...

Aw, hell, why are you doing this to yourself? I know there's the alleged more energy and the health thing, but life sucks without chocolate.

10/31/2006 2:51 PM  
Blogger Ortizzle said...

Sugar, in varying quantities, is in every product that comes in a box, bag or can. Seriously: start reading the labels. If it ain't used to clean your bathtub, it's probably got sugar in it.

What's even sadder is the fact that sugar is probably the least offensive of all the additives. :-(

So go ahead and eat whatcha want.

10/31/2006 3:30 PM  
Blogger Mignon said...

V! You are a saint. I just went to out granola store and found a sugar-free variety of dark chocolate (otherwise I was totally gonna hit you up for some duty-free)

Mrs. H, I don't know. Is there even a scientific possibility of a 1 Reeses event?

Teebs, oh my god. I'm so sorry for your colon.

Meno, honey. Honey is good. I DO honey.

OtJ, that, whatever-you-called-it, doesn't sound good. If it replaces sugar, I want to be able to spell it without consulting my old organic chemistry textbook. But Trainspotting is the perfect analogy. Without the baby part, of course.

Arabella, me too. I don't know why I'm doing it. Really, I don't.

Mamalujo? Seriously. Come to me with all queries of the theological and philosophical. I will always provide a completely unrelated analogy.

Tink, you are a bitch. And that totally didn't work (as far as you know).

Lucia, it does. It sucks and everything is lint colored. (Thanks V-Grrrl, right? That was your metaphor, right?)

Ortizzle - I KNOW! Believe me, I've been reading and pulling things out of the cart right and left. I know. I'm okay with honey and maple, so natural products are good, but I'm afraid pretty soon the bank is going to break. 1 bag of groceries at the granola store is $50.

10/31/2006 4:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm speechless. I ate a cupcake today. And a cookie. They made me.

10/31/2006 6:21 PM  
Blogger Ortizzle said...

Mignon, I hear ya on the food bill. At one time I thought I would just do all my shopping at Whole Foods. One-stop shopping, right? Until I realized that toilet paper (yes our friend the Loo Roll) costs about $20 a roll. Because it's made from recycled paper?! (Hopefully not the same source.)

BTW, after making that crack about the sugar being in almost everything, I checked a few things I figured it couldn't be in, like uh, a can of salted peanuts. Guess what? 1 gram of sugar. Sob.

11/01/2006 7:50 AM  
Blogger V-Grrrl said...

Glad to provide a linty metaphor to my sugar-deprived pal.

I checked a book called Mindless Eating out of the library today, and no lie, looked it over while I munched a snack size Snickers bar.

11/01/2006 8:19 AM  
Blogger Jess Riley said...

I've eaten sugar (Brown, that is) right out of the bag with my fingers, and honey right out of the comb with a fork.

Then a few years ago I tried replacing most of the sugar in my diet with Stevia. I wonder why it didn't work.

11/01/2006 11:22 AM  
Anonymous DD said...

The chromium picolinate idea is worth trying. Deficiencies in micronutrients like Chromium, Magnesium, etc. can cause strange and strong food cravings. Short of changing your water supply or eating only foods grown in Chromium rich soils the supplement picolinate is the way to supply what might be missing. Good daily vitamins with micronutrients in absorbable forms are one other way to cover the bases.

Here in Germany there is a magic sugar - Traubenzucker (or grape sugar). It is actually D-glucose or Dextrose. It is supposedly better tolerated than sucrose table sugar and is should provide a more even energy supply over a long period of time. When our daugther was in the hospital with a GI virus and possible dehydration the nurses could not believe that we had no idea what "Traubenzucker" was. We were ordered to provide her with hot herbal tea with plenty of Traubenzucker in it.

They actually sell small flavored candies here of 100% grape sugar - for people who need extra energy. This sugar is widely considered to be healthy to give to children(!)

I think it works (or the placebo effect is nice, anyhow...)

Very nice pairing of food morality with the spiritual form. As a food enthusiast and particularily an organic agriculture enthusiast I might preach the gospel, but would never condemn those who stray off the path of righteousness ;)

It would be too easy for them to fire back about my wine consumption!

11/01/2006 10:41 PM  
Blogger lildb said...

you forgot "sugar-loving-sugar-humper."

I revel in my adoration of sugar. I would hump a pile of sugar faster than you can say jack rabbit slim's. omigod I love it love it love it.

and an ocean of frosting sounds like my personal mecca.

11/03/2006 10:55 PM  
Anonymous honestyrain said...

no no silly. don't give it up entirely. just eat a lot less and allow yourself little lovely bursts. same energy level and also, you're not as inclined to go on a sugar free shooting spree. everyone wins.

11/04/2006 11:56 AM  
Blogger Orange said...

You know what my thing is? To make a light lunch or a filling snack, I take a little dish, load it up with nuts (cashews, almonds, and/or pecans), dried fruit (from the bag of assorted little bits of dried fruits—raisins, cherries, apricots, plums, apples), and...a sprinkling of chocolate chips. The nuts provide protein and a heart-healthy variety of oil, the fruit has plenty of fiber, and the chocolate chips...the chocolate makes me feel like I'm spoiling myself just a little. I'm talking maybe 25 chips, maybe an ounce of chocolate, unsullied by caramel or crunchies or whatnot.

Join me, won't you? A little chocolate never hurt anybody. And if you always have a little, maybe you won't feel tempted to have a lot.

11/04/2006 1:42 PM  
Blogger Mitzi Green said...

i've been having the "you should eat less/exercise more/quit smoking / drink less" conversation with myself for a while now. but being bad feels soooooo good...

11/07/2006 1:21 PM  

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