What motivated me to change my culinary lifestyle and improve my health and wellbeing? Basically I'm going to be bored in September when the boyfriend goes on not one, but two, lads trips. That's TWO lads trips in one month! So while poor old me is home alone, I thought I'd throw myself into a well being month and let the whirring of my newly acquired magic bullet, drown out any thoughts about the fun he'll be having. When he rocks up at my front door, laden with duty free presents (he better be laden with presents) I'll be looking ten years younger and have the energy of a teenager! Cowabunga!
I set the ball in motion and went out on the hunt for a well being recipe book! The thought of giving up sugar hadn't even occurred to me until I flicked through I Quit Sugar For Life. The concept here isn't to diet, but to change your entire approach to the kinds of foods you eat and return to your natural appetite, before the world of processed sugary foods was born. The author, Sarah Wilson, writes how after she quit sugar she "experienced a steady, calm happiness that has previously eluded me." Sold!
The book is gorgeous, packed with colourful, inspiring recipes and photos. I felt healthier just reading it! The gist is that we're all actually addicted to sugar, and we need to go back to basics to introduce a healthier sugar free lifestyle.
I always thought of my food choices as reasonably healthy, but I was struck by how the notion of a sugar free life scares me. I can't actually imagine it! No Aero chocolate bars, no Kit Kats, not even the mint ones! and you can forget Maltesers!
Sugary treats are a bigger part of my everyday life than I realised! I might well be a sugar addict. I'm anyone's for an apple turnover.
So, since Saturday, when I made the decision to challenge myself to a sugar free diet, I haven't stopped salivating at the thought of sugar. I'm salivating now as I write this!
I'm excited at the prospect of a healthier me though. If I ever have children, I'd love to be one of those mother earth types who raise their children to believe that a raisin is a Saturday night treat. While other kids will be sat playing Grand Theft Auto on the X-Box, my darling Tarquin will be rummaging about the family vegetable patch picking carrots for our evening supper.
He'll sit wide eyed, listening intently to my lecture on the perils of addiction to Mars Bars. He'll also attend Karate class, as it's possible he'll get bullied to hell.
Anyhow, yesterday I headed out to buy a magic bullet, the ingredients for two recipes, kilner jars and the essential...pretty straws.
As a novice, it's a bit overwhelming. Especially when you have to google some of the ingredients to find out what they even are! I thought arrowroot was a vegetable. Would you have known what it was? I was in Sainsburys for ages with my chap, hunting for arrowroot, or 'bloody arrowfoot' as I was calling it by the time we'd scaled the baking aisle about twenty times.
Ten points if you can spot the arrowroot here!
A new lifestyle is a little bit pricey on the offset, but once you've stocked your cupboards with the equipment and made a start on the ingredients the damage to your purse will lessen. Let's be honest, it's a worthwhile investment in the long run. I did sack off the optional chia seeds this time though! £5 a pack.
Now I claim that this is an honest blog, so between you and me, after Sainsburys we nipped to Holland & Barrett for protein powder, and en-route scoffed a Greggs pasty! I know, the irony is ridiculous. It was a sort of goodbye pasty. If all goes to plan, I may never have another Greggs Pasty for the rest of my life. Thanks for everything Gregg, but it's over! It's not me ,but it is actually you! FYI my last fling was delicious!
There is a four week wellness programme in the book and tips on how to prepare for it, but as a novice there's a lot to take in. On Sarah's blog there's a beginners 8 week detox programme available which is the best place to start. Have a nosey here.
I decided I'll start by trying out a few recipes from her book that have jumped out at me and make changes gradually. As I get the hang of things I'll introduce more recipes until hey presto, I look and feel bloody marvellous. Her ethos is to 'gently commit' and not punish yourself.
I might need to resort to her detox programme in the end, but I'll see how I go. I figure that even if I just have one healthy, home prepared meal a day it's a positive step towards a new way of living.
So far I've whizzed up a couple of smoothies and baked Paleo Inside Out Bread. I tell you, sprinkling sunflower seeds over the top of my loaf made me feel like I was winning at life.I'm like totally healthy these days, I cook with sunflower seeds and have spinach in my drinks don't you know!
The jury is out on whether I'll succeed and maintain this new way of living but I'm all for giving it a go. I'll keep you updated on how I get on!
Are you a sugar addict? Can you imagine a life without sugary treats? I'm excited to see if I can do it. I'm doing it for a healthier me, a glowing complexion and of course, for little Tarquin.
Muchos love x x