As Halloween remains only in a distant memory for most of us, the leftover candy and sugary treats are most likely still in plain sight and calling our names. In my house the chocolate bars and candy conspire against me every year right after Halloween. As soon as I clean up after dinner and put the dishwasher on, they quietly start calling my name. Sometimes, if I try to ignore them, they get louder and start sending me telepathic messages and advertisements of how deliciously creamy and smooth they are. If my resistance continues, they raise the bar and join their little voices together and call my name loud and clear. And sometimes, they even start whining and crying a little bit- anything to get my attention.
Over the years I have tried many different ways to ignore those late night calls from the cupboards… I tried watching TV in the evenings to keep distracted, reading a book, drinking water, eating healthy snacks. When that did not work, I decided to tackle the problem with the mighty “Will Power”. It turned out that I had the “Will”, but no “Power”.
Every year, for years I kept losing the fight with the plastic Jack O’ Lantern bucket filled with candy. Starting at Halloween, all through Thanksgiving and Christmas and into the New Year for many years I resigned myself to the fact that when it came to sugar- I was not the boss. The sugar was the boss of me.
It wasn’t until some fateful afternoon in May of 2011 that I hit a rock bottom in this abusive relationship I had with sugar for many years. That experience involved an intense sugar craving, old pack of stale girls scout cookies and hiding wrappers from my family. A sugar high followed by the lowest low brought me to me knees, which in turn broke my heart open. There was only one way to go from there- up. That’s when my healing journey began.
I decided to take on sugar as if it was a school assignment. I researched it for months, read books, attended seminars, watched documentary movies and at the end of this journey I finally let myself off the hook. The understanding of the addictive nature of sugar allowed me to finally approach my cravings with a whole new perspective. The more I learned about nutrition, vitamin and mineral deficiencies, toxic hunger and food addictions, the more I could apply the knowledge to my life.
It has been a year and a half since that fateful day in May, and this was my second Halloween celebration since. There is candy all over my house, but it doesn’t know my name. It doesn’t appeal to me, it doesn’t look good to me, the smell doesn’t attract me and most of all and it is no longer the boss of me. I am not the boss of it either- we just coexist together in one house and have no interest in each other.
This freedom came with lots of education and an open mind. Taking a year off to study nutrition and becoming a Health Coach was the best thing I could have done. I now use my personal experience and all the newly acquired knowledge (combined with my nursing knowledge) to help people find their own strength and to learn about food, nutrients, health and disease prevention.
It turnes out that when it comes to food issues, "Will Power" almost never works long term. Educating yourself on many aspects of nutrition as as well learning new skills and habits is what gives us the lasting changes. I call is "Skill Power".
Below are few videos on sugar and sweeteners I found very interesting. You might do so as well.
Iwona Leger, RN, MSN,Health Coach, owns Love and Peas Health Coaching and runs individual and group coaching sessions. She is very passionate about disease prevention, lifestyle and diet modifications, as well as stress reduction techniques.
For more info visit www.loveandpeashealth.com