Quitting Sugar: Four Days In With Achy Legs
Waking up in the middle of the night, all I could focus on were the severe pains in my muscles. I straightened out my legs as much as I could so that I could try to relieve it and get some sleep. Turning over at four in the morning, I tried to come up with what it might be. Shin splints? Well no, I had’t been to the gym in a few days. Dehydration? Maybe. But well, I never really drank that much water anyway.
Then, alarm bells started to ring.
The next morning, I searched for the withdrawal symptoms of processed sugar on my phone. There it was as clear as day “muscle aches” are a common effect. This is the result of your body reacting to the change in diet. For me personally, it was a massive change when I took a close look at the amount of sugar in at least 40% of what I was consuming.
Four full days of no sugar and other feelings included headaches, flu-like symptoms and moodiness. When co-insided with a change in overall consumption (including milky large coffees for me), I had the urge to eat loads. As a food lover, I do intake large meals anyway. So, multiply a normal diet by two and you’ve got what I have been eating. Surprisingly, in spite of the massive intake of food, I’ve lost weight. In less than a week, my stomach feels flatter and I feel lighter in general.
They say that when it comes to your body and keeping it a healthy weight, it’s 80% diet and 20% exercise. This has certainly proven true for me and without even stepping on a scales.
When it comes to cutting out anything, it’s best to do it in a sane and healthy way. Snacking on sweet bars with the likes of dates has worked well. Naked do a range that can be reasonably priced (depending on where you go) and they go nicely with a cup of tea. Be mindful that these do contain a bit of sugar (Read here). Other options include having some fruit and getting that fructose kick or alternatively, having a cheat day. Give yourself a reward but remember that once you’ve had it, getting back on track is imperative. I have a Milka bar in my fridge which I’ve sad I can have next week after I’ve gone ten days without sugar. I don’t see it as falling off the wagon but rather, admitting I want a little cheat and then getting back to it again.
The most important point to note is that your mind will tell you to have some sugar. It does after all love you and wants to see you happy (which chocolate can do). Don’t be fooled though. Write yourself notes, keep chocolate out of reach and communicate with those around you when it comes to your journey so they can support you.
If you’d like to learn more about wellbeing and my journey with wellness, learn about my book here.