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A Day in the Life with No Sugar

I’ve been off the sweet stuff since July 1 and so far this little experiment is going smoothly. The first week is all about easing into the challenge and I’ve had a little bit of sugar, like honey on my granola and a few apples too. But that’s a whole lot better than drinking a Frappuccino for lunch!

I’ve observed a few things about myself this week. First off, I tend to crave sugar when I’m upset. For example, I cried when I uploaded photos of my dad, Mahlon, to flickr. Scrolling through the photos brought back so many happy memories. The photos made me think about how much Mahlon loved sugar. He loved cherry milkshakes, ice cream, and all forms of chocolate. The last time we were in Lake Tahoe we both ate giant cherry ice cream cones, while watching the sunset over the lake. I miss those moments.

Second, I’m not experiencing so many blood sugar crashes. When I ate a lot of sugar, I would get really tired around 10 a.m. and reach for something sweet. A sweet treat, like a cookie, would help me get through my mid-morning slump. Now I eat a handful of roasted pumpkin seeds or go for a bike ride.

A few of you have asked me what I’ve been eating and I thought it would be fun to share one of my sample menus from the week:

Breakfast: One cup of no sugar granola, from Sarah’s book, with a cup of coffee.

Lunch: One avocado, four slices of cheese and one corn tortilla. I also cut up an apple and spread peanut butter on the apple slices.

Snack: A half cup of granola, with tea.

Dinner: Chickpea stir-fry. Last weekend, I bought a few cans of chickpeas for a fun stir-fry. Making this stir-fry is super easy. First, I coated my cast-iron pan with olive oil and let the pan heat up for a few minutes. This prevents the food from sticking to the pan. While the pan heated up, I chopped up an onion. Then, I tossed the onion and chickpeas into the pan and added a little bit of salt and pepper too. As the chickpeas and onion cooked, I cut up an avocado and feta cheese to go on top of the dish. The meal took 15 minutes to prepare and it was very yummy.

If you have no sugar recipes, please share them in the comments section.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Justina Cesari July 5, 2012, 9:29 am

    Hi! Here is a link to a great article I just read redagrding how to curb sugar cravings. I am going through the same type of step in my dietary cleanse. I’m gluten free, almost 100% dairy free and going for sugar free.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-frank-lipman/sugar-addiction_b_783203.html#s183041&title=Have_A_Piece

    Enjoy!
    ~justina

  • Heather July 5, 2012, 11:25 am

    Here are some tasty Cucumber Feta rolls I found recently. Very refreshing on a Summer Eve
    2 cucumbers
    6 ounces crumbled feta
    3 tablespoons Greek yogurt
    2 1/2 – 3 1/2 tablespoons finely diced sundried tomatoes or red bell pepper
    8 – 12 pitted kalamata olives, roughly chopped
    1 tablespoon roughly chopped dill or oregano
    2 teaspoons lemon juice
    pinch of pepper, or to taste
    Directions:
    Thinly slice the cucumbers longways on a mandoline at a 2mm thick setting. Alternatively, you can use a vegetable peeler if you do not have a mandoline. Lay the cucumbers on top of a paper towel lined cutting board while you prepare the filling.
    Add the feta and yogurt to a medium bowl. Mash to combine using a fork. Add the bell pepper or sun dried tomatoes, olives, dill, lemon, and pepper to the bowl. Stir well to combine. In a bowl, mash the feta using a fork.
    Place 1 – 2 teaspoons of mixture at one end of a cucumber strip and roll up. Secure with a toothpick. Repeat with remaining strips. If not serving immediately, chill until ready to serve.

  • Heather July 5, 2012, 11:30 am

    Here is another one to help when you crave creamy yumminess:
    4 Ingredient Raw Lemon Pudding
    Vegan, Gluten free, Dairy free, Sugar free, Yeast free, Corn free
    Makes 1 cup of pudding which the recipe says serves 4
    Ingredients

    1 avocado
    6 medjool dates, pitted (yield: 1/2 cup)
    flesh from 2 lemons – without peel or seeds (yield: 1/3 cup) *see note
    1 tbsp lemon juice
    Directions

    Place all ingredients in a processor or blender and blend until smooth. (or use a ricer)
    Depending on the ripeness of your avocado, and your desired thickness, you may need to add water. I added 2 tablespoons at the end of blending the ingredients.
    Top with seeds, berries, stir in some chia, or eat plain!
    Note: to remove the flesh from the lemon, cut the lemon into quarters. Begin by peeling the flesh from the rind. You’ll be left with the flesh and a bunch of seeds in it. Remove the seeds one by one and place the flesh into the processor.

  • Kristy July 5, 2012, 2:51 pm

    I’m glad it’s going so well Tammy! I’m doing it too – my major sticking point is soy milk which actually has heaps of sugar in it, but I love it in coffee! Just watch the amount of sugar in your peanut butter 🙂 as for other recipes, the chocolate nut balls from sarahs cookbook are incredible!!!

    • Tammy Strobel July 5, 2012, 3:38 pm

      Yeah, the peanut butter I picked up is sugar free. I’m looking at every label. Sugar is everywhere!

  • Sean-Michael July 6, 2012, 6:30 am

    Hello, great post! I love your blog and your tiny house. I too am a tiny house enthusiast, and trying to move towards simplifying my life. I am taking baby steps, and not living a tiny house (full disclosure) but will be blogging about the journey on baresimplicity.blogspot.com … I am commenting here because you asked for no sugar recipes. Have you looked into raw foods? Often they are low or no sugar. I myself have moved into an almost no processed sugar way of eating. I do still occasionally put sugar in some things, but try to stick to natural sugars such as maple syrup, agave, and fruit. Mostly fruit. Here are some of my favorite zero sugar recipes that seem to fit the way you’re talking about eating in this post:
    http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-detail.asp?recipe=2108303 tomatoes do have fructose, but depending on why you’re avoiding sugar, I’d say go for it include them 🙂
    I found the 1 tablespoon of maple syrup in these completely unnecessary and left it out in the future: http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-detail.asp?recipe=2150874 they do have blueberries
    If you’re a fish eater try this: http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-detail.asp?recipe=1316377
    You may also find some recipes you like here: http://therawfoodworld.com/ (no cooking required, usually vegan recipes)

    Oh and last but not least, if you haven’t yet, you would probably love to try kale chips. They are super easy and can be made in solar oven if you have one (which you can make very simply actually)

  • Sean-Michael July 6, 2012, 6:37 am

    oops in the above comment I forgot to give you the kale chips recipe: http://desertfoodlover.blogspot.com/2012/05/super-easy-kale-chips.html and gave you the wrong raw food link. Here is one with some yummy raw food recipes: http://www.rawfoodrecipes.com/recipes/

    Oh and here’s a page on raw sweetness without sugar: http://www.rawreform.com/content/view/408/127/

  • Frank Martin | Modern Monkey Mind July 6, 2012, 9:31 am

    Silly boy that I am I thought “Oh, this’ll be easy. Stop having sugar in coffee, cut out sweets and baked goods, and we’re good to go.” NOPE. Its almost disturbing the range of stuff sugar is in. Its in stuff you wouldn’t think would contain it, stuff it has no business being in except for making that food item cheaper to produce. This week has been a huge wake-up call for me in terms of how much sugar I actually consume on a daily basis. Thank you all for the recipes, will be giving them a shot over the coming weeks.

  • Sean-Michael July 6, 2012, 10:38 am

    ok last food link I promise LOL but a friend pinned this today and it made me think of your request for sugarless foods. I’m told that sweet potatoes, tho sweet, actually only have about 5 carbs to a potato compared to the 25 in an average white potato. And avocado is full of good fat! http://picketfencepaleo.com/avocado-sweet-potato-salad/

  • Scott Milford July 8, 2012, 1:28 pm

    Cinnamon Pork Rinds

    Ingredients:
    +Pork Rinds
    +Cinnamon
    +Splenda (1 packet)
    +Pam Non-stick cooking spray w/ Olive Oil
    +Ziploc bag (quart size)

    Optional (to replace Pam spray)
    +Butter

    ———-
    1) Place a handful of pork rinds on a paper plate or other suitable surface. Spray top side with cooking spray, and dust lightly with cinnamon. Flip, and spray the other side, dusting with cinnamon.

    2) Open your Ziploc bag, pour in more cinnamon (experiment to find an amount that you like). Pour in 1 packet of Splenda.

    3) Drop in the pork rinds, zip the bag shut, and shake until the pork rinds are fully coated. You shouldn’t see much (or any) cinnamon left in the bag.

    4) Eat!

    === 1 gram of carbs/serving ===

    —Recommended Variation—
    Instead of spraying each side of the pork rinds, you can melt butter and dip each pork rind in the butter. If you use this technique (which I recommend trying), place the dipped pork rinds on a paper towel so some of the butter can soak off before coating them with cinnamon and putting them into the bag for shaking. I have found that too much better causes the cinnamon and Splenda to not distribute evenly.

    Also, the butter variation is a little less crunchy than the Pam spray version, but the buttery taste makes it even more like cinnamon toast. I love it both ways but prefer the butter-dipped version!

  • Layla July 8, 2012, 5:20 pm

    I really like this… I think we’ve come to the same conclusion: drinks I used to like at Starbucks seem sickeningly sweet now, and I have more energy to do the things I enjoy.

    A while ago I started trying to figure out what it was that was making me feel un-energetic and less-than-perfect. I tried giving up gluten for a while, dairy for a while, chocolate for a while… then finally I gave up all my baking supplies and ate fruit and no-sugar-added dried fruit. I’ve added cookies and sweets back in my diet a little bit, but mostly only when I’m at an event or checking out a new bakery with my friend.

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