I gagged and spat it out.
As many of you know, I have Diabetes and my battle with sugar has been on-going for years.
One of my long-term missions has been to wean myself off the TASTE OF SWEET. Even though the combination of sugar substitutes I use keeps my sugar carbs close to zero, I still find myself wanting something sweet now and again.
The fact is … the TASTE of sweet is addictive.
You have one cookie filled with sugar OR with a sugar alternative and you want another, then another and then something else that’s sweet.
That’s right … EVEN if you use sugar substitutes! Sometimes just the TASTE can put you on an escalating ride right into a trouble zone.
One of my BIG vices is Soda … or Pop.
There are two BAD things about Diet Soda.
The label says “zero calories” or “zero carbs” but … BIG BUT, the sweetener most often used is Splenda (sucralose). For Diabetics who are watching their blood sugars, Splenda spells trouble. Even though it contains zero carbs, Splenda affects our blood sugar levels, often MORE than sugar.
That’s right … zero calories and zero carbs and our blood sugar levels are soaring.
The second BAD thing is that just one glass of soda can escalate into MORE. Let’s say you are in a restaurant and order a diet cola … you finish the glass and then get another and then another. Soon you’ve had three or four glasses and … you still want more. Ditto with the refrigerator back at home. You buy a two-liter bottle, thinking it will last a week. A day later you have finished off the whole bottle and want another.
Just a TASTE of sweetness leads to cravings for MORE.
For some of us, just the taste of sweetness leads to cravings for more and even though you’ve been “good,” by sticking to sugar substitutes, you end up capitulating and eating that sugar filled doughnut and then a bowl of sugar filled ice cream.
Back to my long-term MISSION to reduce the need for sweets.
Up until a few months ago, I would allow myself one or two liters of diet cola a month. I finally decided to just stop. No more soda. No more pop.
Holiday weekend coming up. I’m having a BBQ. I need to stock up on drinks including a variety of sodas.
Big sale at my local grocery store. Brand name Coke products that usually sell at $3.50 were on sale for 99 cents.
I go into the grocery store to stock up, but the shelves are bare. Stripped to nothing except for a few bottles of diet Dr. Pepper. So I grab them.
Back at home, the bottles are on a shelf waiting for the long weekend bash. BUT Dr. Pepper is screaming at me.
“Just one glass.”
My WON’T POWER is just not working. I succumb to the siren call of a tall glass of soda. I image sheer bliss.
I pour the glass and take a big gulp.
Thank goodness I was standing by the sink because that’s where it ended.
It was so freaking sweet I couldn’t stand it.
That can’t be. Can it? I took a tiny sip.
YEP, that’s hideous. It is beyond sweet. There is NO way I could drink it, so I poured the rest down the sink. Good riddance!
What just happened?
I had reached a milestone in my life. My taste buds could no longer deal with diet soda. Even thinking about it makes me shudder.
I have since gone back to the grocery and stocked up on 99 cent bargains for my weekend BBQ. I actually feel “safe” with a dozen bottles of soda in the house. I know it’s very likely I will never drink soda again.
If you struggle with sweet cravings, you CAN win the war.!
Whether you decide to go cold turkey (good for you!) or go the slow route by cutting back on sweetness gradually … it DOES work. Over time your “need” for sweetness will lessen. It may never fade away entirely, but you will find yourself not being able to eat the same levels of sweetness anymore … and you will find yourself being able to stop.
Here are a few of the things I have done, that work. These can work whether you use sugar or sugar substitutes. You are aiming at reducing the levels of “sweetness” you can tolerate.
- In your coffee or tea, instead of five drops of Stevia, slowly reduce until two or less are “needed.”
- In your baking, if the recipe calls for 1 cup of sweetener slowly cut back by one eighth of a cup at a time. One of my indulgences is sugar-free ice cream. I have cut back to 1/2 the amount of sweetener called for.
- Instead of buying carbonated drinks, try making your own so that you can control the level of sweetness.
- Be present in the moment when eating. Just pay attention to each bite as you are eating. A strawberry can be gloriously sweet, so can an apple.
- IF you do indulge in something like a doughnut, pay attention. Don’t just scarf it down in seconds flat. Take a small bite and pay attention to the taste of sweet. You may end up celebrating your own milestone by eating only half!