Food can seem like such an innocent temptation. A little treat here and there, it’s not like you splurge every day right? But the real damaging effects of poor food choices are residual, both in the physical body AND in the gradual weakening of will power.
Here’s what I mean: Say you have your favorite dessert of choice in front of you. You feel every impulse to want to eat that thing. Your mouth is salivating in anticipation. By doing exactly what your body wants to do – eat that food, you get the temporary pleasure of eating but the destructive forces of sugar go to work in the body AND if you had any thought whatsoever about why you SHOULD NOT eat that dessert and you dismissed that thought – you weakened your resolve to make healthier choices. To choose a higher value (like health) over a lower value one (like the temporary pleasure). Its a very subtle thing, but its there and it can effect every other area of your life when it comes to EVALUATING and ACTING ON choices.
I’ve found that food can be a terrific tool for the development of will power. And one of the best places to start is with your control of sugar intake. Here’s a very simple strategy to give you the best chance at succeeding in CONTROLLING your sugar intake (Relax, notice I didn’t say eliminate *smile* )
Step 1: Commit to at least one week with no sugar.
Step 2: Prepare for first 3 to 4 days of sugar withdrawal – the hardest days by far. By anticipating them in advance and knowing that it gets easier, you can be prepared.
Step 3: Reward yourself at the end of 7 days if you want with a treat of your choice .. you can even go a little over board if you want. The point here is PLANNED splurging – means that you’re still in control. Planning a pleasurable activity instead of acting on impulse gives you control over the body instead of it having control over you.
Step 4: Renew your commitment for another 7 days and designate one day a week as a sweet day. I always called my day “Saturday Sweet Day” and I would go a little crazy on Saturday. Having a planned sweet day won’t make it seem so impossible and it gives you something to look forward to for maintaining your commitment.
This approach worked for me for years. And believe it or not but you actually stop craving sweets after a while. When you notice how yucky you feel after a sugar splurge you stop craving it so much. You just needed to see what feeling ALIVE is like to stop craving something that makes you feel so bad afterwards.Plus you’ll notice as you are more CHOOSY about food, you also tend to make more empowering decisions in other areas of your life as well.
Let me know if you decide to take me up on the 7 day challenge!
P.S. When you do splurge, make sure its with healthier desserts, with all natural sugar. Avoid sugar substitutes and sweet stuff made in a lab – god knows what that will do to you long term.