I’m not insane. I promise. But…I don’t like sugar that much. Well…not entirely true. I do enjoy sugar. Who doesn’t? But I honestly don’t like it that much. Kind of? Let me explain.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ll pound some natural Oreos all the live long day, but that’s a pretty rare occasion. My issue with sugar is that I get tired of it. I’ll have a bite of chocolate, or a piece of cake, or even a few bites of ice cream and then I’m done. I can’t choke down the rest. I know, I know. Everyone wishes they had my problem.
I’m not here to brag about hating sugar and how great I must be.
But I am here to explain what I mean when I say, “I don’t like sugar”.
For starters, I can’t have candy. Or much in the way of dessert. You see all those pretty colors? Most of them are there because of colors like red dye 40, yellow 4, yellow 5, and other synthetic dyes. And I don’t eat those.
It’s not that I’m some crazy health snob with a “better than thou” attitude. There’s a good reason I stay away from all and yes I mean all synthetic dyes. They give me migraines. Debilitating migraines. They depress my mood. They put me in this awful fog. I get extremely nauseated. And that’s just a few side effects. I get sick. So avoiding them really isn’t to make you feel bad about your choices…trust me. But the second reason is my choice.
I won’t touch the processed stuff. Not if I can help it.
Check this out. Now, in this article here and in a bunch of other studies, cancer has been linked to these dyes and the compounds in them. But no one really talks about that. I’m not going to list all the claims and I’m not going to stand on a pedestal and shout about how damaging these things are. But I will say this.
Synthetic dyes are bad. Plain and simple.
And I definitely won’t put them in my body…especially since they make me sick.
Do some research. What did you find?
The next reason? I feel it too much.
It does not help my athletic performance. I have touchy blood sugar and eating sugar at all makes me crash fast and hard. And I hate having to take time to recover from that.
It also makes me really jittery and really cranky, more notably when I decide to have a lot of it. Add that onto a stomach ache and it really isn’t a recipe for a very great time, right?
So, why would I eat it? And why do I say I don’t like it?
Well, I wouldn’t. And, because it’s easier to say I don’t like it than to go into a whole big ordeal. Here’s what happens if I jump into the “chemical dye” conversation. People look at me like they want to murder me because they take my stance as an affront to how they’re living their lives. I’ve said this before and I will say this again, my personal decisions do no reflect your life, your decisions, and my perception of you.
If you want that bag of skittles and you buy it and polish it off, I won’t care. I really won’t! Now, sometimes, I’ll ask a close family member or friend not to eat something around my like brand-name gummy bears because I will feel upset that I cannot eat those. However, if you tell me what you want…I’d be happy to bring the alternative version that we can eat together!
So that’s part of what I mean. I mean that I don’t want to explain to you why because of your reaction.
But the other way this conversation goes is this. I tell someone I have a food sensitivity to a dye and can’t have candy. Then…three months down the line I have a real hankering for sweet tarts and I’m at the theatre. Okay, I’ll just go buy some and eat a few then give the rest to someone else. Sure, I’ll have a headache but if I measure out how much I have it’ll be mild to moderate and I won’t get a migraine. I might feel kinda yucky for an hour later in the evening, but I really want that candy.
So I go to buy it and everyone accuses me of lying about being unable to eat candy. And it makes me feel awful.
Please, think about this before you say something.
I say “no” to 9/10 social outings because I can’t eat there. But the one time I do choose to go out and get a small something to eat, I get attacked. Whether it’s jokingly or otherwise, I don’t appreciate it.
If you see someone you know doing something you think they can’t or shouldn’t do. Let. It. Go. You really have no idea why they’re doing something. You can’t be in their head so you won’t really know why they choose something one day and not the rest but trust what they tell you is true and back off.
It is their life, they do get to choose how they feel.
And that’s a big part of this for me. I choose to feel as great as I can as much as I can. But sometimes, I decide that the consequences don’t matter as much. The benefits outweigh them. I’ll feel bad but I really want to eat with my friends for this special movie or occasion.
But my life isn’t all doom and gloom, bitter and bland. I pound sugar every day…just not processed sugar.
This right here is my most favorite dessert. Fruit! Actually, strawberries. I’ve always loved fruit more than candy and chocolate. That’s how I was raised and my dad was like that too, so it must be in our blood. I eat tons of fruit and it lights up the same happy centers in my brain as candy would for you. Not too bad of a deal, if I don’t say so myself.
But here’s the thing. If someone does they can’t have something and you see them eating it a few months later. Relax. You don’t need to be the food police. They know what they’re doing, I’m sure of it. Just ease up, let it go. Trust them. But more than that, let them live the life they want to live. And if someone says they can’t eat something…don’t force it. Let it go.