Day 4: Stronger Together + Sensory Issues (Sugar Challenge)

Wow, I did not feel great this morning.

I’m nauseous, exhausted, and uncomfortable. I very much regret my decisions.

I’m really committed this time. I’ve had a few days to think it through and I really want this.

My partner (Alex) is also on board.

He has an autoimmune disorder that we’ve been managing (mostly successfully) with diet (he eats mostly plant-based and 100% gluten- and soy-free), but sugar seems to create flare-ups too, so he wants to give it a shot.

That’s awesome for me, because that means we can ban all sugar from the house, and start creating alternatives together. It also means that the grocery bill will likely go down a little, which is great!

So, just to recap, here is what we are testing for:

Alex:

  • Autoimmune conditions
  • Digestive health

Flora:

  • Mental health (anxiety, depression, ADHD*)
  • Energy levels

*ADHD is not caused by sugar, and it won’t disappear, but I am interested in managing it well and, at the very least, not making my symptoms worse.

Update: Before leaving the house, I went to take a shower, and when I popped my head out the door briefly to ask a question, I found my partner with a pack of gluten-free cookies behind his back and a guilty look on his face. I couldn’t stop laughing. He ended up eating dates and nuts instead, and I got a good amount of happy chemicals from belly-laughing. Let’s see how this goes.

Sensory Issues & Healthy Eating

One of the (ND) struggles with giving up sugar and/or processed foods is a sensory one:

Processed foods tend to taste exactly the same every time. Fresh, whole foods are always a bit different.

One day, my blueberries are sweet and delicious; the next, they might be sour and wrinkly (like most of the government).

This can be a real problem for people with sensory issues. My sensory sensitivities are much worse when I’m stressed or anxious, so I rely a lot on processed foods on my hard days.

To keep up with the sugar challenge, I decided to try to make my own snacks (combining a few relatively ‘stable’ ingredients creates a reasonably reliable product for me) and find some pre-made sugar-free snacks too (like Rawbite or Nakd bars; open to other suggestions if you have any!).

Very happy about these potatoes

Evening recap

I let myself get too hungry again.

My partner and I met a friend for a late lunch, but the restaurant didn’t have much I could eat and it was ridiculously expensive ($65 for a bunch of kale and lettuce that we weren’t allowed to share), so we all decided to just get drinks. Considering that I’m not doing sugar or alcohol, and it was 30 degrees Celsius, I just had some water.

By the time we were on our way home, I was exhausted, and VERY hungry. We got some roasted sweet potatoes at SweetGreens on the way home, which helped, but I’m still a bit hungry and tired, and the cravings are strong. I’m not sure if they’re actually cravings or just a force of habit, but my brain keeps trying to get me to raid the sweets cabinet. Instead, I grabbed my laptop to write down my thoughts. (Writing seems to be my solution from pretty much everything these days.)

I made it through the day without sugar.

Alex trying to give in on the first day made me feel more motivated, I think. (I have a very competitive spirit, and feeling like I could win this makes me want to play the game.)

Let’s see what tomorrow brings.

It’s on!

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