My sugar detox venture

by Abbey Mortemore, FLT Columnist

So 21 days ago I joined a 21-day sugar detox (21DSD) with a wonderful dietician and licensed 21DSD coach, Cadie Jardin of Bassets Health Food Store (http://www.cadiejoy.com)! I must say if you have never done this before, it is not easy but well worth the return. Not only did I learn that just one teaspoon of sugar suppresses your immune system for six hours, but that four grams of sugar is equal to one teaspoon. This totally changed the way I will read food labels for the rest of my life! Also, did you know that the American Heart Association says that anything over six teaspoons of sugar a day can increase your risk for heart disease? Turns out sugar can be as destructive as it is tasty.

The idea of the detox was to literally purge yourself of sugar cravings both mentally and physically (I personally had a terrible time sleeping for about four days). We ate meat, veggies, full-fat dairy, seeds, nuts and only three fruit options. Since the idea was to rid yourself of sweet cravings, we were not allowed any artificial sweeteners or any really sweet fruit. That limited our “sweet” options to: a green tipped banana or a green apple or a grapefruit A DAY! But the great thing was that once the crappy sugar was out of my system, green bananas and green apples became a great treat with almond butter.

Another thing I enjoyed was whole milk with a one-fourth teaspoon of real vanilla extract. After week one, my milk was a treat and I swore it tasted just like a homemade vanilla milkshake. Full fat dairy was allowed during the detox. I asked Cadie why and she explained to me that although whole milk has sugar in it (lactose), the fat content helps to slowly release the sugar into your blood stream and doesn’t spike your blood sugar. Another benefit was that veggies became much more flavorful and sweeter. Mini carrots became another “sweet” fix and are extremely handy while driving, as well as pumpkin seeds.

All in all my body and mind adapted after the 21 days. I felt great. My sugar cravings had subsided, I was sleeping better, feeling more energetic and of course, less bloated. My husband Mike even lost 10 pounds! Real food has become so flavorful and the thought of hydrogenated oil and the amount of sugar that comprises an Oreo seems a bit disgusting.

So now you ask, what happens after the detox?? Well, we are continuing the low carb, no grain way of life but are slowly adding in more fruit. I’ve learned how great I can feel without sugar and that the benefits of staying sugar free far out weigh the short lived pleasure of a chocolate cupcake. But I won’t lie and kid anyone: We of course went “off the wagon” on day 22. I do not recommend this strategy. I swear I felt hungover the next day. It was miserable and I’m paying for it now as Tuesday was DAY 1 all over again! The good news is, Cadie said I didn’t undo the benefits of the detox; it just stinks getting back on track. Just praying now, I can make it through Halloween!

For more information, check out http://www.cadiejoy.com and 21 Day Sugar Detox online or on Facebook.

Abbey Mortemore is the owner of Black Swamp Crossfit & Barbell Club located at 7335 W. Sylvania Ave. just east of King Rd. in Sylvania. If you have questions for Abbey she can be reached at 419-343-2434 or visit http://www.blackswampcrossfit.com.