I consumed no evil all weekend.

I consumed no evil all weekend.

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I have a serious sugar addiction problem. It has concerned [info]cathijosephine a lot. I don't know how anybody manages to consume it in quantities that aren't unhealthy. I saw something that suggested classifying refined sugars as poisons because they displace foods that contain nutrients in diets.

My current list of evil foods:
  • Refined / added sugars.
  • Refined grains (white flour, white rice).
  • Fruit juice (refined sugar)
  • White potatoes.
"Sugar sweetened beverages" are particularly evil.

Part of this process was google searching for sugar depression.

The paleo diet is neat (just meat, veggies, and fruits), although I'm not sure about its exclusion of whole grains. An inconvenience that occurred to me last night is that I don't think canned fruit is available in plain water. The blood type diets are interesting (different diet for each blood type), although for me it basically just points back to the paleo diet.

The raw meat diet fascinates me, but I don't really want to spend that much money on meat of sufficient quality.

Update: Apparently all rice has a high Glycemic Index, so I'm going to try to stop eating it.
  • You can get water-packed canned fruit. These are approved for diabetics:


    If you're up for a day of home canning, you could also make your own no-sugar-added fruit. My friend [info]surrealestate does home canning and its great for having a winter store of food. And you can use the jars over and over again.
    • Those sound very useful, thanks. I guess I'm more interested in canning this moment than I ever have been.
      • Home canning is great, and very economical. Once you buy those jars, you'll never need to buy them again.

        Also, it gives you 100% control over what goes into your canned food. I think that's the biggest benefit that home canners get.
        • I haven't found home canning fruit to be hugely economical (or at all, yet), but it is really fun.
    • Looks like all water packed fruit has artificial sweeteners :(
  • If you want fruit juice, go for something that has nothing added (except maybe water if it's from concentrate). Those aren't hard to find, at all. They will naturally have sugars in them, but no refined sugar.

    Also, I've gotten "light" canned fruit at Albertson's (which you may not have out there) in the Albertson's brand, which is packed in pear juice instead of heavy syrup. That might be an acceptable option for you if you want canned fruit.

    If you want whole grains and like oatmeal, you might consider steel-cut oats rather than rolled oats. They are processed less (they're simply cut instead of steamed and squashed) and retain more nutrients, but they do take longer to cook. (The box I have says that one serving (1/4 oats, 1 cup water) contains 83% or 84% of your recommended daily allowance of whole grains.) They seem to be chewier and tastier, at the expense of 30 minutes to cook rather than just 5.

    Speaking of refined/added sugars, I read earlier this year that the American Heart Association recommended no more than 37.5g/150cal daily for males. Based on this figure, a can of Coke (41g) will exceed that recommended amount quite handily.

    It also just occurred to me that you may want to look into dietary guidelines for diabetic people, since you're trying to eliminate sugars, but perhaps you've already thought of that.

    And congratulations on your accomplishment this weekend!

    • No, I want to never drink juice again. The "(refined sugar)" bit is because it basically is refined sugar. Apple juice with no sugar added has a lot of sugar in it.

      For whole grains, I've been eating a lot of instant brown rice. Although I just noticed that it has a high glycemic index, huh.

      I hadn't thought of looking into dietary guidelines for diabetics, thanks.

      • What about just eating fruit? Is that ok? if so, what's the difference between eating oranges, and drinking orange juice? (or apples and apple juice?)

        Once you train your brain that water tastes good, it actually does.
        • the difference between fruit and fruit-juice is that the fiber/bulk has been taken out of the juice. So, you can eat an orange, or drink a quarter of a juice glass of juice and get the same calories.

          Fruit juice is higher sugar for lower-satiety than whole fruit.
  • i MOSTLY do paleo for the bulk of what i consume.

    haven't quite given up on minimal amounts of grains though.

    the basic challenge: go a week with it. put some protein on a plate about the size of your palm, and as thick (not including fingers), load the plate with veggies to cover it. broccoli, spinach, and many more. eat!

    drink a lot of water and/or tea/coffee - you're consuming a lot more fiber than you probably do...

    if a week works out, keep going another week...

    figure out later what to add in, or remove if you don't like.

    recently (1-2 months), i've give up eating anything with artificial sweeteners - most notably drinks/sodas. it's been ... interesting and anxious. i typically never drink anything with HFCS anymore. water and tea and coffee...

    sprouted bread is marvelous imho, but not a LOT of it. pasta is right out. wild rice is okay as a side, not a meal. too much dairy as well - but i'll still go for a cheesecake or icecream - sparingly.

    it makes for vastly simpler food choices, and one realizes quickly just how much CRAP is being pushed on us.

    i'm sure you've googled, but the crossfit people have a lot to say about paleo... i can provide pointers as you like.

    http://www.urbangetsdiesel.com/2009/07/change-your-life-in-thirty-days.html is a good start. maybe.

  • I've been considering making some major changes in my diet, after gaining ten pounds since school started :( Thanks for giving me something to consider. As a vegetarian though it's hard to handle the meat part of things, and a lot of processed veggie protein stuff has, well, a lot of crap in it.

    With canned fruits in syrup, if it's hard to get it packed in water, perhaps you could put the fruit in a colander and rinse it with water until all the syrup is off. It could work, although the fruit itself could still be infused with the water. Worth looking in to.
    • Yeah last night I think I decided I'm okay with buying fruit packed in fruit juice (with no sugar added) and just pouring it out, thanks.
  • Try chana dal sometime if you've got glycemic index worries. It's good stuff! :-)
  • I am confused

    I thought that high glycemic index carbs (e.g. sweet potatoes) were preferred to low glycemic index potatoes (e.g. white potatoes) because the high-end carbs were more filling (so you eat less overall) and because they are better suited to the body's needs (more nutrients & fiber per calorie consumed).

    I've been trying to move to more high-end carbs, though I do still eat a lot of sugar myself.
    • Re: I am confused

      You have it backwards.

      "carbohydrate foods that breakdown quickly during digestion have the highest glycemic indexes."

      The GI of sweet potato is 54, baked white potato is 85. So sweet potato is better, by GI.
      • Re: I am confused

        OK, that's better. So the carbs I'm after are low-GI. Makes more sense.
        • Re: I am confused

          Yes. And not just carbs, all food.

          There's a nice not terribly overwhelming table 1/4 of the way down this page: http://www.becomehealthynow.com/article/carbs/8/
          "Most cuts of beef", and "pork" are high GI (bad). Chicken and turkey are good.

          I would guess you associate GI with carbs because the worst GI foods are refined sugar, which are carbs.
          • Re: I am confused

            Well, I'm mostly focused on carbs because I've found that to be a useful way for me to manage relative to my current diet. I eat no pork at all, and all the beef I eat is locally grown and grass fed, so the charts based off hormone-laden corn-fed animals aren't as helpful.

            On the other hand, I loves me some chocolate, and many other sugars that I don't wish to remove from my diet. It's relatively easy for me to cut out things like bread, pasta, white potatoes, etc but if I want a carb in my meal planning then I'm going to try to select a low-GI carb.
  • Something that works for me is to have goals about what food I WILL eat, not what food I won't eat. If I eat the food I have decided is good for me (whole grains, fish, fresh produce) then I count it a job well done, and if I crave something sweet/processed I have that too. Eating a lot of good-for-you food makes the other stuff less appealing, mostly because you start to notice how good your body feels when it has the right kind of fuel.

    Sometimes craving sweet food means you're not getting enough protein in your diet. I'd think about that. Maybe it's not a problem for you, but I used to get WAY less than the recommended 1/3 of calories from protein. Not a healthy place for me to be.
    • That must be nice. I always want to eat all of the candy. I have to be feeling pretty sick from it to stop eating it. Which takes a couple bags in a sitting.

      Thanks for the protein info. But I'm pretty sure I haven't been low on that in a while.

      • That must be nice.

        Yeah, I get that a lot. :) I wish I could share the wealth somehow. But really I'm just so blessed in the way that my body works with food. Other than, you know, the "allergic to everything under the sun" issue.
        • Immediately after eating 4 servings of brown rice, 3.5 servings of canned chicken, and several cups of water, I still had a strong craving for mountain dew.
          • It is more of a long-term thing, at least for me. Like, eat good things for three weeks, bad things seem less desirable.
          • I'm curious about a couple of things.

            1. Do you eat fast? It takes a while for your body to realize that you've eaten, so if you're eating quickly, it might be your blood sugar not having risen enough yet.

            2. Have you tried watering down your drinks? With juice, 1/3 juice to 2/3 water is still pretty juice-tasty... with soda, you can use carbonated water...

            It takes about 21-30 days to train your body away from a habit... is it possible that you're just in the habit of drinking a lot of sweet things?
            • Yes, I probably eat too fast.

              I don't want to get that close to sugary drinks. I'm doing fine with water.

              Yes, I'm in the habit of consuming lots of very sweet things, and I realize the longer I go without them the easier it will be.
  • Don't forget nuts, which are very paleo and work as my favorite appetite suppressant. I've been doing the "caveman diet" for a year and a half, and I think it's great -- there are lots of very delicious options!
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