Sunday, April 5, 2009

To be or not to be addicted

I know I said I won't post until next week, and this isn't a post, but it was compelling enough to write about immediately.

So as I said, my little sister was visiting me and she expressed interest in becoming healthier because her physical activity has decreased dramatically now that she's no longer swimming regularly like she did when she was on the swim team. We determined her metabolic type (surprise, surprise we have the same type) and I put her through the motions of eating every 3-4 hours, keeping her metabolism up, eating the proper balance of macronutrients, etc. etc. And then, on Friday, I took her to town to see my school and friends and right about 6 pm, she became absolutely lethargic and tired while I was feeling like I could run a marathon. But looking at her, a 16-year-old on vacation with plenty of sleep, yet her eyelids were closing—it made me sad. I remembered that I too used to experience that late afternoon crash, which is right between lunch and dinner for us. The thing was that my sister didn't have any processed sugar while she was here, but like I used to be and like millions of people are, she is addicted to sugar. Sugar addiction is when you body learns to function with the incredibly sugar load you put into it through snacks, so that when you don't provide the sugar, your blood glucose drops and you become lethargic.

When it was happening to me, I'd just run across the street and buy my favorite chewy chocolate chip cookies. Heck, I didn't even have to wait to feel the fatigue. I was in tune with the first signs of sugar cravings. In my previous blog I said sugar is a drug. Today I watched a video that I had to share. It's about sugar withdrawal and what to do about it. But the quote that got me the most is that “if sugar were to be put on the market for the fist time today, the FDA would likely not approve it.” That made my day. Speaking of day, it's beautiful outside, so I'm off for a walk. Watch this video and pass it on. And have fun making educated, aware choices.

I'll be back next Friday.

Till then,

“One should eat to live, not live to eat.” --Moliere

"I don't want anything else in life. But you are forcing me to look at wealth and at horizons I have never known. Now that I have seen them, and now that I see how immense my possibilities are, I'm going to feel worse than I did before you arrived. Because I know the things I should be able to accomplish, and I don't want to do so."--Paulo Coelho from The Alchemist

This is just to clear up misunderstandings (thanks for the heads up, Britt). I don't want people to stop using sugar. I want them to make educated decisions, even if that decision is to eat fast-food every day. Unless you're practically my family, I don't care what you're doing with your body, and even if I care, I won't expect change. I know probably better than most that you can't change people. They'll change when a myriad of semi-idiosyncratic factors lines up for them. But what I sure as heck can do is spread information, so that when eventually someone gets sick of being lethargic, addicted and on the verge of developing life-threatening illnesses, they'll remember the video and blog and have an idea about where to start with the change.

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