What a change has taken place for me in the past week. After struggling to get back off of sugar, I have finally hit that sweet spot where I am once again in control. It took a lot of stumbling and backsliding before I was finally able to get it out of my system but thankfully I made it. It continues to really amaze me how tied my hunger is to what I’m putting in my body. I continue to be shocked at how certain foods affect me. It seems like I learn this again and again! Somewhere inside of me I continue to hold onto this belief that my hunger is something I was born with and can’t be controlled. Even though I already know that is not true—I somehow forget this now and again and fall back into old patterns. Yet when I experiment with getting rid of sugar and carefully controlling the type of food I put in my body then I’m always amazed all over again at how it really can be controlled by what I choose to put in my body.
I am back to choosing foods that have no sugar or no more than 4 grams of sugar per serving. I prefer no sugar though. I have to be very careful with all sugar as I have found that even the sugar from a lot of fruit can set me off. The other thing I control is carbs. This is the second highly important component to controlling hunger. I don’t know how to adequately explain it but there is something called Ketosis. When you eat under a certain number of carbs, your body can go into ketosis. When you eat less carbs, your body turns to fat for energy and burns that. Ketones are also produced as part of the process. This is my simple explanation and not a very good one . I don’t fully understand what ketosis is but I know this. When you are in that state, you are not very hungry at all. Something about it suppresses your appetite in a big way. It is really pretty amazing actually how little hunger you feel when you control carb intake.
So the two most powerful ways I know to manage my appetite/hunger are cutting out sugar and cutting down on carbs. I personally try to keep my carbs under 30 grams a day. My shakes have a few carbs and so those add up over the day. That is probably where I get most of my carbs from except the residual carbs that come from things like salad dressing etc. I basically choose food that has no carbs or very few. I completely avoid all bread. Anything that is bread related, rice, pasta etc. When I am really on track, this is how I eat. I read every label extremely closely. I never choose to eat anything with carbs if possible but there are things that have carbs in them which I consume. For example, I made a soup yesterday that called for a can of tomatoes. This is something I am always iffy about because it is hard to find tomato sauce that is without sugar and carbs. I know that this can of tomatos had 18 grams of sugar for the entire can which I don’t love. Yet I also know it is going into a big pot of soup and so when you break it down per serving it will not be that much for the bowl of soup. I also know it had carbs but spread out over the servings it won’t be too harmful. In general, I try to keep my carbs under 30 grams and my sugar as low as humanly possible. When I watch two of these areas very strictly, it kills my appetite. I believe some people are carb and sugar sensitive. It’s just about finding that “line” for you and living there.
For the past week, I’ve been finally back on track with these two areas. It is the best feeling in the world!! My appetite is completely under control again and I am rarely hungry. To feel control again is truly miraculous because I was starting to become really frustrated. It also reminds me that very little of my success has to do with ME and my ability to “resist” food. It has a lot more to do with the external things. It has a lot more to do with the type of food I put in my body and the reaction that it causes. I would like to give myself credit for not overeating this week but then I would be attributing my success to some willpower or strength that comes from me when in reality it is coming from a combination of being off sugar and carbs. Those two things dramatically reduce my appetite to the point that it’s not even a struggle for me to resist things. That is what I feel helps to control my appetite more than anything.
At one point, I was down to 177 pounds. That has been the lowest weight I have achieved thus far. Over the past few months, I have bounced all over the place due to the increase in my appetite when I let sugar back into my life and stopped carefully controlling carbs. I regained weight bouncing back up to 194 pounds at one point. That is a 17 pound regain. Until I sat down this week and really added it up, I didn’t realize that. I thought I had regained 12 pounds which was bad enough. As someone commented on here, at least it’s not 100 pounds!! And that is SOOO true. However, I have learned that for me regain can happen FAST. I have always been someone that can gain weight very easily. It could take me no time at all to put back on 10 pounds. I could probably accomplish that in a week or so when I’m out of control.
One of my goals in life this time around is to NOT allow myself to gain weight in large chunks without doing something about it. In the past when I would go off the rails, I’d not even pay attention to how much I was gaining. I’d bounce up 50 pounds in no time without fully being aware of how much I had gained. It is hard not to totally check out when you’re off track because you don’t really want to know how bad things are getting. Yet it’s much easier to lose 10 or 20 pounds than it is to lose 300. So I want to make sure that I’m keeping up with where I am and always working at keeping things manageable.
I am now down to 185 pounds. So I’ve lost close to 10 pounds of my regain. I have to lose another 8 pounds to get down to the lowest weight I’ve reached so far. Once I am there then all the weight I lose after that will be “new” weight Finally I will get to see my ticker moving again!
Here are some things I’m eating this week:
I also make this mixture which I eat in various ways. I basically just cook ground turkey combined with some peppers and a little seasoning.
Then I will often add shredded cheese and some kind of salad dressing to it to give it flavor. I often eat this plain with a fork. Sometimes I will put it in lettuce leaves (the kind that are shaped like little boats or tacos) I often put either this mixture or the beef fajitas above in the lettuce wraps along with some salsa when I want Mexican food.
Something else I have really gotten into lately is cabbage!
I never ate cabbage before and I have discovered it is a great low carb, no sugar food!
It is also versatile and you can do different things with it.
I like things that are easy and quick so I tend to buy the coleslaw mix at the store and use that
I will take a handful of this out and put it in a little bowl mixed with some salad dressing.
I’m careful with my salad dressing watching sugar and carbs. I just keep sugars under 4 grams per serving and watch how much I eat.
I mix a little of this with the salad dressing and it’s really filling and good!
I always loved coleslaw but it has tons of sugar in it usually. If you ask me this is just as good!
This is the dressing I mixed with it last night. It takes only a second to grab a handful of this and mix a tiny bit of dressing for flavor.
The other thing I’m doing with the cabbage (coleslaw mix bag) is making soup.
I’m sure most lifelong dieters have heard of or tried the Cabbage Soup Diet. Well I am in no way doing that diet but I still make the soup.
It is something I only started doing in the past 2 weeks during my effort to get back on track. It has helped because during that time where my hunger was still out of control, I could grab this soup at any time I wanted to help fill me up and make me feel as if I was getting something. It helps also to break up the monotony of the shakes.
I am sure it might be better if I took the time to cut up the cabbage myself but I just throw the bag of coleslaw mix in there with some pre-cut veggies, chicken broth, and a can of the tomatoes. I also add some chili powder. It is very simple to make and my kids even like it!
Here are the ingredients I use:
My week is going very well in the area of food. I have also continued to work out at Planet Fitness or with my videos at home. I also believe that exercise plays a big role in controlling appetite and building confidence. This has helped me a lot as well to get back on track.
I hope your week is going well!