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Ahhhhhhh! I can hear the angels singing.
We never have to “diet” again?! Could you imagine?!
I’m here to scream a resounding yes.
It is possible to stabilize your weight and not have to pay attention to the next hot “diet of the month.” This is not a gimmick or a sales pitch.
I’m just a girl who struggled with food addiction most of her life and I stumbled across a solution.
A solution that is so simple that it infuriated me that none of my doctors or eating disorder counselors told me about it.
My name is Jenny and I identify as a recovering food addict.
When I put sugar and or flour in my mouth, it sets up a powerful physical craving followed by a mental obsession. Like most addicts, I’ve lied, stole, and hid my using—but, there was no hiding the 75 extra pounds I was carrying around.
My addiction began when I was about six and continued to progress until I landed in treatment when I was 21-years-old.
I wish I could tell you they gave me the simple solution, but sadly, they did not. However, they did introduce me to the concept of weighing and measuring food and staying clear of sugar. Unfortunately, for an addict like me, that wasn’t enough and my battle with food and weight continued.
The obsession and cravings were daily. I literally never had a day of reprieve from thinking about what I was gonna eat, when I was gonna eat it, making sure I had enough stash hidden in the house.
It was mentally exhausting and took a huge toll on my self-esteem.
Finally, my epiphany arrived on my 45th birthday.
I was morbidly obese, in a loveless marriage, and knew that I was wasting my life and my potential. I was a disappointment to myself and to my higher power; something had to change. Being sober in A.A. for 23 years at that point, I sought out a 12-step food program and that’s where I learned that I had a serious allergy to sugar and flour. Who knew?! I was told that if I gave up those two substances that my obsession and compulsion would be relieved. That was five years ago.
For me, a “detox”, quitting cold turkey, abstaining completely, (however you want to term it) was the only way—and today, I continue to abstain from sugar and flour while maintaining a 75 lb weight loss.
Here are the top five ways I got off flour and sugar:
The amount of time needed to get your body adjusted to not craving sugar and flour, will vary depending on your own system and you will likely relapse, often. Just keep starting over when you do.
“Do not judge me by my successes, judge me by how many times I fell down and got back up again.” ~ Nelson Mandela
If you are going to have a successful detox, preparation is key. I suggest you start with detoxing your environment, specifically the kitchen. Purge any trigger foods that may tempt you to slip. If you have kids, dedicate a cabinet, a drawer or a shelf for their items—but get them out of your sight. I have a sugar-free house and advise house guests “If you’re bringing sugar into the house, please keep it in your room and take it with you when you leave.”
To support your detox process, it’s best to have some healthy foods on hand to create well-balanced meals. Cook up some fresh proteins, like chicken, fish, tofu, roast some vegetables, have a head of lettuce cut up in the fridge and chop up some fresh veggies and store them in a separate container in the fridge. This way, when it’s time to eat, you can easily assemble your food and enjoy.
Dining out during a detox period is not recommended. It’s too tempting and can weaken your resolve; furthermore, you have no idea how food is actually prepped and cooked in a restaurant.
This is the obvious tip, yet super imperative. The recommended amount is 6-8 glasses a day. While detoxing, I say have a bit more. A great tip to help flush those toxins is to enjoy a cup of hot water with lemon first thing in the morning. Drinking water may also fill you up should hunger strike in between meals. Keeping your electrolytes up helps tremendously as well. “Snake juice” is a popular option (contains no actual snakes) but is lemon juice, baking soda, Epsom salts, and sea salts mixed with water.
It’s important to move your body, yet I do not recommend a strenuous workout during the detox process. Take a nice walk for 20-30 minutes, get your blood flowing, and those endorphins stimulated. What you don’t want is to be starving after a serious workout. It may set you up to fail. This is where the meal prep suggestion comes in handy.
Before you plan your detox, lighten up your social calendar. Don’t schedule extra events and outings. Plan to be home, eating clean meals at your table, and anticipating a good night sleep.
Honor your body. This is a healing process.
I share my story with you because I am on a mission to educate the public and change the diet mentality of our society. Unfortunately, Americans and others are addicted to sugar and flour. It’s not our fault, but for those who are constantly on a diet and yo-yo’ing up and down, there is a solution.
I know abstaining is not the popular choice, but it works.
The belief that any food in moderation is acceptable must change if we are going to reduce the obesity in this country and put our population on a healthy track.
I am passionate about this subject because I know the mental and emotional anguish that comes with food and weight issues.
I’m here to offer hope, freedom and solution to anybody who’s willing to take it.