So, my 7 Day Challenge Giving Up Sugar has finally come to an end.
I set out to give up sugar cold turkey and see what changes happened in the 7 days, but with everything in life, it’s a journey and things don’t always go as you plan. I’m glad I called it ‘Giving Up Sugar’, and not ‘Going Sugar Free’!
A week ago, I had puffy eyes with major dark circles under them. I looked like a panda. My anxiety levels were high. I was bloated. I felt rubbish, exhausted and fed up with the world. My skin was bad and greasy. I wasn’t sleeping well at all. Having greatly reduced sugar for 7 Days, here’s what I’ve learned and the benefits of my 7 Day Challenge Giving Up Sugar. Hopefully, my honest journey so far will help you realise you’re human and that it’s ok to have good days and bad days. Hopefully it will help you realise that you can make changes too.
Even though I haven’t managed to give up sugar completely, this 7 Day Challenge has been such a positive experience. I would definitely recommend giving it a go and seeing what you learn.
What Were The Benefits of Reducing Sugar?
- My eyes are so much less puffy and my dark circles aren’t as bad.
- My skin is so much better. Less spotty and less greasy.
- My sleep is so much less disturbed and less restless than it was.
- I’m eating much better and making better choices.
- My anxiety levels are so much lower.
- Things are tasting so much sweeter when I have them so I can easily reduce the sugar I’m having further.
- I’m drinking more water.
- I’ve identified some food allergies / intolerances which have been making me feel more rubbish.
- It’s been easier to keep my weight stable as a lot of my calories were coming from sugary foods. I’ve naturally been eating less.
- My cravings have reduced and I no longer want to snack on junk.
- I’m enjoying drinks without sugar. There are some – Green Tea and Raspberry Leaf Tea.
- My brain is clearer and I can actually think.
- My mood has improved and I feel so much happier.
- I have more energy.
- My emotions are calmer so it’s not such a rollercoaster each day!
- My hair looks and feels nicer.
- My nails have grown better.
- The bruises that I had are starting to heal (they used to hang around for ages!)
- I’m eating a more PCOS friendly diet, and actually enjoying the food!
What Did I Learn?
It’s important to set realistic goals and make small changes so that you don’t overwhelm yourself. Take small steps in the direction you want to go in each day and before you know it, you’ll be so much further forward.
Celebrate the victories. It’s important to acknowledge the positives so you can build on them and make progress. A step forward is a step forward, no matter how small!
Acknowledge the negatives and the bad days. There will always be ups and downs, but you can learn from the negatives. Don’t beat yourself up and throw in the towel because you had a bad day. Use them as an opportunity to make better progress.
Know your routine and where you will struggle. Changing your routine is as much part of the dietary changes as what you buy. If you identify any hurdles you might face, such as getting 3pm munchies, and prepare for them, you’ll be more likely to succeed.
Listen to your body and observe when you eat things that make you feel rubbish. You may have food intolerances that you didn’t know about. Try cutting these things out for a few days and see if you feel better.
It’s important to know your starting point, so you can see how far you’ve come. If you’re starting to make changes, take note of how you feel, how you look and your moods as well as your sleep. I use my FitBit to monitor my sleep.
On the first day, or the day before you start, keep a food diary and see what sugar you actually do eat. That will give you a map to start working from and areas to address. By knowing where and when you eat sugar, and what foods have it in, you will be better prepared to make the changes and substitute new foods for sugary foods. You’ll probably be surprised how many of the foods you eat actually have sugar in them – even if you think you’re having a low sugar diet! Look through your cupboards and read the labels.
Preparation is so important. Plan meals and snacks in advance so you don’t have a panic when it comes to meal times and hit the junk because it’s easier. You’ve probably not eaten some of the new foods before, so you won’t have recipes ready. Get some ideas ready that you’re excited to try. They don’t have to be gourmet cuisine! Keep it simple.
Drink plenty of water. You need to flush out the toxins when you’re cutting out or reducing sugar.
Doing this 7 Day Challenge Giving Up Sugar has been a really positive experience for me. I’m going to keep taking small steps each day and reducing my sugar intake. I’m feeling so much better after just 7 days! I’m eating nicer food, and my taste buds are changing.
Along with all the benefits above, I’ve helped my PCOS by having less sugar and eating healthier food. It really has been so good to do this!
We give up so many things in order to manage our PCOS, I have come to the conclusion that a little bit of sugar is ok. I’m going to keep trying to reduce sugar, and be more aware of what I’m eating, but I’m not going to live like a saint and ban it completely. I’m not going to beat myself up and see myself as a massive failure if I have something with sugar in it. If I fancy a coffee with sugar, then I will have one. I will just do it consciously now. We still have to live, and we still have to have things we enjoy so life doesn’t become a complete chore. Making EVERYTHING off limits is just going to add more stress to your life and leave you feeling lost and miserable. Whilst there are things we have to do for our PCOS, I think that there are things you can have in moderation. I didn’t realise how much sugar I was actually having and reducing it has really helped me!
If you’d like to reduce your sugar intake, and would like some support or help, then just get in touch and I’ll be there for you!
Give it a try and see what changes happen for you!
The Scrambled Egg
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The Boring But Necessary Disclaimer Bit… Any content or products featured on The Scrambled Egg blog are purely my views, opinions and choices. They are not recommendations and are for information only purely to show you my journey with PCOS and any steps I take to get control of my PCOS. I am not a doctor and am not medically qualified so medical advice should always be taken before making any changes to your diet or lifestyle. Please do your own research. I accept no liability for losses or injuries caused from the user’s reliance on information on this site. Some blog posts may contain affiliate links. I cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any products or sites featured or for any sellers.