It has taken me about a month to get up the courage to commit to this post.
One of the ways I lost so much weight is that I started to rely very heavily on artificial sweeteners. Very heavily. To the point that some people would call it unhealthy.
I googled around last month and I found a video on Dr. Oz talking about a personal trainer who was addicted to artificial sweeteners, and realized that I actually drink/eat them more than she does. I drank Mio like it was going out of style. I bought industrial strength sucralose because I was literally sick of dealing with like 5 packets at a time for each cup of tea or coffee I drink (and I drink a lot). I bought industrial strength liquid sucralose and carried it in my purse. I drank Diet Soda every day. If there was a vegan sugar free thing – I bought it, and ate it. A lot of it.
So, that planted a seed.
Then, I came across this link that says animal studies show that aspartame blocks a gut enzyme, and that may be a link to why artificial sweeteners are linked with obesity and increased appetite.
I can tell you that I have days, weeks, where I am just stupendously, irrationally hungry, and it is a tremendous act of willpower to just. stop. eating. I have days where I’m just eating all the time. I try to make healthy choices, but it’s a really tough sensation to work through without gaining a ton of weight.
I suspect artificial sweeteners are artificially inflating my hunger. And I suspect they are impeding my results.
Okay, ready for some completely unsubstantiated scientific speculation?
I don’t know if it’s just artificial sweeteners, or all zero calorie sweeteners that may be doing this. But my guess is, even though Stevia is “natural” – it is still very heavily processed, and just because it’s a plant doesn’t mean it doesn’t act biologically through the same pathways that Splenda/sucralose does. Once your food is digested, I suspect your body doesn’t really care if your food started out at factory or from a plant. It’s all various combinations of the elements we can find on the periodic table, you know? So I don’t think substituting with Stevia, Monk Fruit, whatever, is a viable solution.
So. Part of me really doesn’t want to do this, but I’m gonna. On January 1, I will throw away all zero calorie sweeteners, and do my best to avoid them in all of my food.
I just took a peek at my kitchen to see what is at stake. Due to the “Eat What Ya Got” diet I actually don’t have a lot of food in general. Beyond the pictured sweeteners, I also have about 10 packs of artificially sweetened gum, 4 bottles of flavored coffee syrup, 2 bottles of sugar free chocolate syrup, half of a bottle of sugar free maple syrup, and 2 packages of sugar free pudding. I was pleasantly surprised that all of the fat free salad dressing I bought didn’t appear to have any. Unfortunately, it appears that my protein powder does have stevia in it. I have about 2-3 months worth. So I am just thinking I will go through that and just replace it with an unsweetened brand when the time comes. Maybe it can be my crutch. I really could be better about getting more protein.
So. Um. The right thing to do would be to donate these or throw it out right now instead of on Jan 1 but… I kinda wanna just eat them over the next 12 days. 😀 A last hurrah! A celebration of all the sweet things! Hey I’m not perfect. 😀
I know I’m addicted because I’m afraid to do this. I’m afraid to give them up. I also don’t want to give them up. I love them! My food will be so boring without them. I love sweet things! I’ll have sweet cravings and be unable to satisfy them unless I consume calories, and probably a fuck ton of them. And I might gain weight. And I reaaaaaallly do not want to gain weight. The child in me is saying Nooooooooo and so perhaps that means that I really do need to do this.