This blog chronicles my life as I try to balance healthy lifestyle habits with my husband's penchant for pizza rolls and my daughter's desire to watch iCarly 8 hours a day. It contains a mostly humorous, kind, and somewhat spiritual look at everyday life and the people who live it.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Trick or ...Carrot Stick?

I've been buying a lot of candy lately because it's almost Halloween. Buying candy for me is like an alcoholic buying's only a matter of time before I'm going to eat some of it. I'm not going to want to, I'm going to try my hardest not to, I'm going to regret it even before I do it, and still, I am most likely going to eat some of that candy.

I'm addicted to sugar.

A sugar addiction is socially acceptable, not usually seen as an addiction, and just as dangerous and deadly as any other addiction. But oh my God it tastes so good! I have always had a sweet tooth. Until about 4 years ago I thought that handling problems by eating chocolate was not only a good idea, but also fairly healthy. I am not one of those women who will demure coyly saying "oh, that's too rich for me!" I have never, and I mean never turned down something for being "too rich." I have quit sugar many times: gone cold turkey, weaned myself off sugar, substituted natural, unrefined sugars, tried just eating fruit, every trick in the book has been attempted. I always go back to sugar. Sugar is insidious! It's in everything from bread to barbecue sauce!

I can directly relate my sugar intake to my mood: feeling bad? eat a lot of sugar, feeling good? eat a lot of sugar, not sure how I feel? hey, here's something to do, let's eat some sugar! Moving to Massachusetts hasn't helped at all because Dunkin' Donuts is everywhere in this state. There is actually a Dunkin' Donuts across from a Dunkin' Donuts just down the road from my house. People here say there are so many Dunkin' Donuts stores because the coffee is so good. I don't drink coffee (one addiction being enough, thank you) so if you see me at the Dunkin' you can be sure I'm going for a Munchkin fix.

So now for the most sugar filled holiday of all: Halloween. My daughter is too old to fall for the "just checking your candy" ruse, and too wise to believe me when I say I just want one little miniature Snickers bar. I have, though I'm not proud to admit it, been reduced to sneaking candy out of her bag after she goes to bed, lying to her about the number of candy bars she had, eating so much of her candy that to hide my indiscretion I tell her I "donated" it, and forced myself to go to bed when she does to avoid eating at night. All for sugar.

My next hurdle is to somehow not pass this addiction on to the next generation. I feel I am failing already as my daughter will do almost anything to get dessert, a trip for ice cream, or bubble gum. Restaurants that give candy with the bill are among her favorites. She considers chocolate a food group. She gets cranky if denied sugar and even sometimes appears to get a headache if she hasn't had sugar in a while.

She is her mother's child.

But all is not lost. I once successfully had no sugar at all for 6 months and wouldn't have broken that streak except I was too embarrassed to refuse dessert when it was offered by a woman who intimidated me. I have days, weeks, sometimes even months where I am able to make better food choices and feel great. I have not purchased sugar foods for our home in months, thus only consuming the occasional dessert when we go out for dinner.

But it's Halloween again, and the Trick is avoiding the Treat...

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