Wednesday, March 4, 2009

sugar blues

I've got the blues, the after sugar blues.....

About ten years ago, I came across a book called Potatoes Not Prozac. At the time, I knew it applied to my mother and most likely applied to me but I didn't do anything about it. I definitely fall under the category "sugar sensitive." It's kind of like being an alcoholic but with sugar. But sugar is a lot harder to avoid than alcohol is. Also, in the book, the author talks about how the seratonin levels of people who are sugar sensitive are effected by eating sugar. My copy is loaned out but what I remember is that when you eat sugar you get flooded with seratonin and you're on the top of the world. Then your body compensates and changes the amount of seratonin produced and how much is re-uptaked (is that a word?). So it keeps taking more and more sugar to get that sugar high and otherwise you're fighting depression and other things.

My current solution to my sugar sensitivity is to go on sugar challenges when I don't eat sugar for a given period of time. I haven't been willing to totally give up sugar yet - it's way too yummy and is such a huge part of celebrating events like birthdays. So right now, my challenge is to go the entire year of 2009 with eating sugar only on certain days when I'd really miss it. So far it's been Valentine's Day and my birthday. Next sugar day is Easter (cadbury eggs, spice jelly beans - who can have Easter without those???). I've been relatively successful so far though I ended up adding a day on either side of Valentine's Day and one day before my birthday. My reward in the end? Yarn! Sugar was always my reward or special treat. Oh, you had a bad day? How about a cookie? So now buying yarn is my special treat. I'm trying to have fancy loose leaf tea be my other sugar replacement.

And now to the post-sugar blues..... After a sugar binge - because I seem to have no self-control when it comes to eating sugar and when I have self-permission to eat sugar, I eat an obscene amount - I go through about a week of being depressed. I'm convinced that nobody likes me. My joints ache. My ability to go up and down stairs and to get out of bed is impaired. Everything is in slow motion. And watch out! I might just bite your head off! Which of course just reinforces the feeling that really nobody likes me. Hey, I don't even like myself so who else would?

I'm in the middle of the blues now. But I'm looking forward to feeling better in about a week or two. I might even drop a few pounds! Another side benefit of not eating sweets.

I have another sweet I'm going to have at Easter. Sushi candy! I tried a piece yesterday (figured it was a once in a long while chance and I only had one piece...) Yum! You make it with fruit roll ups for the seaweed, rice crispie treat for the rice, and gummy worms for the filling. Yum! And pretty, too. So I think I'm going to make that for Easter. Then the post-Easter sugar crash and depression will be worth it. Right?


  1. The more I hear about this, the more I am tempted to try it. But man oh man, the willpower inviolved. What links/etc would you recommend?

  2. i just found this web-site which is by the same person as wrote the book i had.

    looks a little new-agey but might have something of value to say. otherwise search on anti-inflammatory diets and you might find something.

    i find it is really really hard but worth it because of how much better i feel. i'm not ready to give up sugar forever but am getting better at short stints without it. each time you try, it gets easier. the first two weeks can be really hard but usually you drop a few pounds after two weeks. four weeks makes it really easy. and cravings are dramatically lower after six weeks.