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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Sat Mar 05, 2011 6:36 am 
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thisheregiraffe wrote:
VeganMeredith wrote:
MAJOR chocolate craving going on for the last two days, I cannot figure out how to quench it. Any tried and true solutions?


Cacao (or cocoa, your choice) powder mixed with a banana or two. It's like frosting!


I am not doing sugar-free/low-sugar but this sounds AMAZING!


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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Sat Mar 05, 2011 10:07 am 
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Cocoa powder and coconut butter and banana = probably heaven. I will have to try this...

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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Sat Mar 05, 2011 5:56 pm 
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I've been wanting to give no/low sugar a go for a while now but I've been using the excuse of "waiting for the right time" to put it off, well no longer! Or actually just a teeny bit longer- I've decided to go sugar free for lent so I've got a couple days left to prepare (get my fill of sugar!). To start off with I think I might try to completely give up refined carbohydrates/sugar and see how that goes, if I can't manage that then I'm going to do no sugar.

I've been eating so badly recently and just trying to cut down a little isn't working but when I make a concious effort to be super strict about something I can usually stick to it pretty well so I'm hoping that I'll be able to do sugar free lent and then afterwards start introducing some things back in without going overboard. I suppose I'm just looking for a bit of balance.

I just read through the whole thread and I've got lots of ideas for what to eat. I'm really excited!


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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Sat Mar 05, 2011 9:59 pm 
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Urgh, I gave in to that darned chocolate craving today and ate far too many chocolate chip cookies. Definitely trying the frozen banana and cocoa powder this week.


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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Sat Mar 05, 2011 10:12 pm 
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Went to Loving Hut with my mom for a linner-type meal and she insisted we get the chocolate cheesecake. So, I never ever liked cheesecake, and I haven't had a vegan cheesecake I think ever. It was amazing. Totally worth it. And not overly sweet, so I don't feel like I'm suddenly going to be gorging on candy and cookies now, like some 'switch' was turned on. Nice to know where to get amazing cheesecake though!

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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Sun Mar 06, 2011 9:43 pm 
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RandiJM wrote:
Went to Loving Hut with my mom for a linner-type meal and she insisted we get the chocolate cheesecake. So, I never ever liked cheesecake, and I haven't had a vegan cheesecake I think ever. It was amazing. Totally worth it. And not overly sweet, so I don't feel like I'm suddenly going to be gorging on candy and cookies now, like some 'switch' was turned on. Nice to know where to get amazing cheesecake though!


it's great when you do have those moments once in a blue moon when you think "okay, it's an appropriate time to indulge" and it doesn't send you over the edge because it's so satisfying. afterwards you think, "that was rich and yummy, but i could do without" and it actually helps go for much longer without any cravings or fighting yourself to avoid/not think about sweets.

I've been back on strict sugar free for a while now. I gave myself a couple weeks to be less strict last month. I'd have dark chocolate sometimes and for v-day we had vegan ice cream. I'd do regular soymilk instead of unsweetended almond milk. Then after my relaxed brief moment, my skin started to break out again. I gained a few lbs and felt like I was dragging along. I went back to square one again. Oh man, even though I started this in jan '10 and did it all year. Starting again that one week was just like the first time. I was pissed and sad that I couldn't just eat sugar (and for me snacks like pretzels and tortilla chips which is just another part of my healthy eating I follow along with no-sugar>> "no fried foods or vending machine food"). I whined at night when all I wanted was chocolate (dammit!). SO, I just wanted to say for those who are just starting, I just went through that again. It reminded me how hard it was and now that I'm passed that first week again, I rarely even think about it. It gets better.

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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Sun Mar 06, 2011 9:54 pm 
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I need to get back on board, you guys! Low sugar for me! I feel so much better when I do it!
No sugar is too strict (for me), but I am going to work harder for low sugar. I've been upping my intake of fresh fruits, whole grains, and preparing my own meals.


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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Sun Mar 06, 2011 10:16 pm 
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CTate I love hearing from you since you are this thread's role model, so it seems! I definitely group pretzels/chips/other salty 'vending machine' foods that I devour entire bags of in one go, into this no-sugar/junk model. I haven't been able to be as strong as I can be bc of the major stresses of the present. Yet every day I become more resolutely on board, when I realize how much better I felt during that day when I ate x whole-foods-based meal &c.

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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Sun Mar 06, 2011 11:13 pm 
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I've been thinking a lot about what direction I'll take my diet in as I incorporate new foods in and ease off the anti-candida regimen. I've pretty much decided that I'm going to remain sugar-free at home, but eventually (in several months at least) bring back dates and maple syrup, and keep eating whole grains but especially quinoa and buckwheat, instead of relying so heavily on wheat. No refined junk! Once my diet allows me, though, I will eat some sugary things at restaurants and such (like the cheesecake mentioned above). I'm not used to eating out very often, but I think that classifying foods as home foods and out foods will be a good way to keep a good eye on what I am eating most of the time, and will allow me to maintain my perspective on sugar as a "treat". Kind of like my Orthodox Jewish grandparents, who would eat non-kosher foods when they went out but would disown anyone who brought non-kosher leftovers into their home.


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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Mon Mar 07, 2011 4:20 am 
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Hi guys! I don't really post in this thread too often, but I do read it all the time.
Lately I've been modifying my sugar habits a little, as I've been mostly off sugar (with the exception of small amounts of agave) for a couple of years now (wow, actually, nearly 3 years). I want to be able to bake for people without relying on agave (as some of my friends, including my partner, have issues with the high fructose content - he has a family history of type 2 diabetes, is slightly overweight, and tends to get stomach aches from high-fructose stuff). I also want to be able to have a little bit of whatever amazing vegan stuff people have baked.

So I've been eating a tiny bit of sugar again. It hasn't really crept up on me, and I've managed to keep it really low by not doing much baking at all myself, and avoiding purchasing sweetened products, focusing on fruit for my sweetness fix. I feel like at this point, I can do this healthily and fairly comfortably for the most part. Unfortunately, though, this weekend I had a bit of a rough time with some of the VCon fudgy blueberry brownies. I made them for my partner's birthday picnic, using rapadura sugar, and the combo of that and the chocolate (which I avoid due to caffeine sensitivities, but still do indulge in every now and then) was a bit much. I was an emotional mess all weekend! It wasn't entirely due to the sugar, but I know the signs - waking up later than usual, feeling sluggish, craving sugar and carbs, the "sugar hangover", that kind of thing. And full-on mood swings. Despite this stuff, it's good to know that I can recognise it so quickly, and get back on track with it within a few days. I just need to remember not to overindulge when I do decide it's ok to have sugar.
I guess I just wanted to share that it has totally gotten easier for me to recognise when the sugar is affecting me, and quicker. Which is great, because I can also trust that I have the willpower to stay away from it again (and also refined carbs, which tend to just exacerbate the problem). This thread and you guys are awesome, I love checking in here to see how everyone is doing and get inspired about my own low/no sugar journey!

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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Mon Mar 07, 2011 5:52 pm 
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Sounds like you're doing really well, Gunk! I love those brownies, now I want to make some!

eryn wrote:
I just read through the whole thread and I've got lots of ideas for what to eat. I'm really excited!

Great! It gets easier once you start :)

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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Mon Mar 07, 2011 6:34 pm 
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I didn't realize how much my body is accustomed to sugar. It is going through that craving phase. Yuck. Fruit didn't satisfy me at all today, so I ate some yogurt. I know, it has sugar in it, but if it is that or a bar of chocolate, at least I'm getting probiotics and stuff (or am I just rationalizing my way into eating sugar?) Oh well, it's done! But I've avoided the typical protein bars and stuff that I was eating, so it's progress. I'm being super gentle with myself, and just striving for progress and little goals, daily. I didn't pick up any sweets at the grocery store today, I chose fresh produce instead. I bought carrots and hummus to snack on, too. Nothing is really satisfying me at this point, though. Such is life. It's temporary.


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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Wed Mar 09, 2011 11:25 am 
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I'm giving up sugar for Lent. I kind of went crazy over the holiday season, then my birthday was in January and my husband's birthday was last week, not to mention the fact that I'm testing for the pie book. I have seriously had a piece of cake or pie every single day for the last three weeks.

So, I actually started yesterday (not sure why), and boy howdy was it a rough day. Cravings and withdrawal like you wouldn't believe. I've had a headache since yesterday afternoon, and I'm super irritable. I know this will pass and the cravings will go away and eventually I'll be able to watch my husband eat pie without wanting to cut a bisque, but good Lard this sucks.

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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Wed Mar 09, 2011 11:41 am 
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I was horribly unprepared for the low-sugar part of my Lent experiment. Is there a good, vegan, low-sugar instant oatmeal? I'm good on cereal. I expect to eat a lot of bananas in the next few weeks.

My rule for low-sugar is that i'm only allowed to use agave (and I guess maybe molasses and brown rice syrup) as a sweetener, and since it's more expensive, i'm not as free with it as I am cane sugar. So I pretty much only get added sugar from drinking tea, and maybe a drizzle on non-instant oats, in yerba, etc. I drink unsweetened almond milk all the time anyway.

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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Wed Mar 09, 2011 1:58 pm 
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I definitely overindulged this past month and it's time to get back in shape. I ate so much sugars and fats that I decided to cut both out, today first day and it's going pretty well. I had tea and banana for breakfast and a huge salad with beans and carrots and a piece of multi seeds bread. The good thing is I feel full for much longer when I eat like this, while if I eat white rice or roasted potatoes for lunch than I'm hungry at 4pm and eat chocolate.
I might make a green smoothie with spinach, carrot, banana and orange for dinner.
And I'll make hummus to have with bread in the morning instead of jam.

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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Wed Mar 09, 2011 5:17 pm 
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Well, my first day went alright. Instead of my usual oatmeal with syrup I had oatmeal with banana mashed into it to make it sweeter, not quite the same but I can get used to it. Soup for lunch (with a teeny bit of added sugar, but I wasn't just going to pour it down the drain). It was dinner that was a bit of a disaster, I'd planned to make a aubergine curry but I had so much work that I ended up with no time to do it. I managed to stay sugar free, but I hadn't planned on replacing the sugar in my diet with oven chips! Oh well, tomorrow is another day.

I really need to hunt down some peanut butter that doesn't have any added sugar.


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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Thu Mar 10, 2011 8:38 am 
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Cutting out sugar and fat at the same time sounds like it will make your life a living hell. Have you considered layering these changes, i.e. cutting out sugar and then cutting out the fats a week or two later? Either one of those changes on their own will cause you to be a bit mean and crazy for a little while, so I can't imagine doing both at the same time. I've found that nut butters have been my saving grace when it comes to battling sugar cravings. A little bit of macadamia nut butter, on buckwheat toast or just off the spoon, will generally help me through my "I WANT CAKE NOW" moods. I've probably more than doubled my fat intake recently, actually, although I'm only eating healthy fats. It helps to stay full, which prevents additional cravings. Also, it keeps me from stuffing my face with carbs, the few ones I'm allowed to eat on my diet anyway. I've lost weight despite all this, not saying it's a miracle diet or anything, just that cutting out sugar and fat together might not be the best or only way to manage weight. Or maybe I'm just being fooled and I'll balloon out in a week or so!

I've been using Xylitol in my green tea and porridge. Some might see that as cheating, but it helps you get used to not using any sugar. I only ever use a very tiny amount, not enough to actually make something sweet, just enough to cover any bitterness. Used less and less each time, and now I'm happy eating my breakfast porridge (quinoa and almond milk in my case) just with half a diced granny smith apple mixed in.


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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Thu Mar 10, 2011 11:09 am 
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I agree with Vegan Candida Diet (your username makes me laugh btw), that cutting out fat is probably not a great idea. I think that cutting out unhealthy fats, i.e. fried/trans fats is a good idea, but healthy fats are an important nutrient in your diet. Plus, dietary fat definitely increases satiety so that you feel more satisfied with your meals/snacks. I'm pregnant right now, but when I'm not I find that eating a diet that's higher in fat and low in sugar helps me maintain my weight much better.


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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Thu Mar 10, 2011 6:31 pm 
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I wasn't planning on giving you tedious updates of what I've eaten everyday, but it's keeping me accountable- sorry!

So, day 2 was not too bad at all. An apple and some dried apricots for breakfast (I know they're high in sugar, but I'm not really trying to avoid natural sugars). Lunch was a couple of peanut butter sandwiches on wholewheat bread. And dinner was an eggplant and chickpea stew-y, tagine-y thing with bulgur wheat (which I don't think I cooked right).

Hope everyone else just starting for lent is doing okay.


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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Thu Mar 10, 2011 6:44 pm 
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Whenever I go low-sugar, I just want more fats. It's fine if I choose healthy ones, like almond butter, avocado... but today I want chips like a son of a bisque. I ate a luna bar instead, which is sugar. This is just really difficult. BUT not beating myself up. I'm eating heaps of fruit and salad and other good stuff, but it's just not as awesomely satisfying as I want it to be. Maybe I need some squash or something of that nature.


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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Sat Mar 12, 2011 2:54 pm 
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I didn't mean I intend to cut out fats entirely, just to limit the intake of the bad ones, i.e. not eating roasted or fried potatoes for lunch everyday (our canteen is magical). I made hummus with the Vcon recipe and that's definitely not fat free.

Today is day 4 and so far it's been no problem. It helped that I had to travel for work thursday and friday so I was away from my cupboards and couldn't be tempted, but still. My bf remarked that I look skinnier, which cannot be after only 3 days of no sugar.
Today I had a huge green smoothie for breakfast (btw, how much smoothie do you normally drink in one go? Mine was 3 cups and I felt bloated afterwards. Is that a normal amount? It was a banana, an apple, an orange, and two handfuls of spinach) plus green tea, which I never drink with sweetener so I'm fine. For lunch I had a large salad with lettuce, spinach, carrots, mushrooms, and braised tofu with a slice of ww bread. Two oranges for snack and more tea, and I'm not hungry for dinner.

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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Sat Mar 12, 2011 4:32 pm 
Queen Bitch of Self-Righteous Veganville
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I am starting to think thoughts. About chocolate cream wafers.

Hold me.

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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Sat Mar 12, 2011 4:34 pm 
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I would but I'm busy eating (sugary) protein bars. Fork. Anek, how on earth is it so easy for you?
I'm going to blame it on my never-ending period.


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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Sat Mar 12, 2011 6:50 pm 
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I ate graham crackers on Thursday. Three of them. But that's it since Monday! I've been eating a lot of bananas.

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 Post subject: Re: The no-sugar support thread
PostPosted: Sat Mar 12, 2011 7:06 pm 
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I got some amazing no sugar peanut butter yesterday, it's so tasty. Kind of ruining any hope I had of losing weight though.

I'm finding it easier than I thought actually. Before I started this I was on a diet where my guidelines were pretty much just eat better and eat less which wasn't working at all because I have no will power, but when I actually have specific rules like "you can't eat this, you can't eat that" I find it so much easier to stick to. I'm not exactly craving sugar but I do kind of miss it! Have to admit, I was kind of hoping that cutting sugar would make me feel noticably different but it hasn't, maybe I just need to keep it up a bit longer.


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