The email from Cancer Research arrived in my inbox at the perfect time. With my wonderful friend going through cancer treatment as we speak, and my current attempts to give up sugar and refined carbs, joining this campaign seemed to be a great way to raise money for a very important cause, and also to keep me on track with my diet!
Reading lots of books over the last 12 months has led me to believe that sugar is responsible for so many health issues in today's world. Most of us love sugary products of some sort or another, and convenient carbs are also dangerously easy to eat, and I'm no exception. I've also followed the guidelines of eating low fat to lose weight, and I make no progress, and this is what has led me to read so much to find a way of eating that works for me. I used to see sugar as empty calories not realising the harm it was doing to my body. Many books later and I now believe that eating high levels of sugar and carbs leads to the obvious obesity and diabetes, but also sugary blood allows cancer cells to grow, and may well be responsible for heart disease, high cholesterol, fatty liver and possibly dementia et etc.. So to me, sugar is now my enemy and I have to take control of it rather than it having control of me. And boy, the cravings to eat it are difficult to ignore when you try to give it up!
My attempts to give up have been going on since the beginning of January and I think I am through the worst of the withdrawals. Those cravings telling me to 'EAT NOW!!!!' have subsided so as a result it is much easier to eat less. I am eating very well too, just missing out sugar and carbs. At first I felt as if I had run a marathon and even the tips of my fingers were aching, but that has now subsided too. I am still tired but hoping my energy will return in a few days time. If it doesn't I will have to add a small amount of carb back into my diet.
The diet I am attempting is the Low Carb High Fat diet (at it's extreme it is called the Ketogenic diet which is a healthier and more varied version of the Atkins diet) which also happens to be one of the advised ways of eating for cancer sufferers, along with the Mediterranean Diet (which is very similar).
The one thing that will keep me sane (which apparently is OK) is the odd piece of dark chocolate. But I'm going to give up chocolate on my cappuccino because that has sugar in it too! Anyone coming to lunch/dinner over the next month will also be offered low carb/no added sugar desserts.......
So please show your support for Cancer Research by sponsoring me to keep off the sugar and carbs for the whole of February!!!