Stepping into a sugarless life felt like signing up for my first art class

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I meet up on the phone with nutritionist Margaret at Eat Naked Now. According to Margaret, by giving up sugar, wheat, and dairy I would reclaim my relationship with my weight, food and ME! The second phone meeting was with James Barry. He is the owner-chef of Wholesome2go. He is LA’s version of the milkman delivering to your door fresh, organic, consciously raised and then prepared food. Chef James comments sealed the deal. He was in week two of his cleanse. He said, “He feels lighter, more energized and really clean”.  Additionally, “his fat felt less fatty”. I was inspired and ready to go forth with meals prepared to Margaret’s specs and delivered by James to my tastes.

Building my support network was a boon to my successful detox

Margaret suggested building a support network. My Pilates pals don’t have a problem with food. They embody control (the original name for Pilates was Contrology) Foodie friends respected my isolation and called to check on lost pounds. My recovering friends prayed I would find a higher power.

It turns out my best ally was my husband

He cooks, he does dishes, and he goes to the grocery store.  In this regard, he was my dietary enemy. His grocery bag includes: 2 packages of cookies, one bag of trail mix, TJ’s Vanilla ice cream, and a box of licorice. In my worst co-dependent moments I blamed him for my weight gain and addiction to the ice cream.

He found out the cost of the project and rallied to my side. He took custody of all the cookies, trail mix and licorice. (These are hidden even today.) The ice cream sat alone in the freezer.

Thinking about Steve’s generosity, I flashed back to fifteen years ago. I was in a similar funk, albeit not due to fat. Steve was worried about me. He believed I was creative.  And he wanted to give me something special for my birthday.  Secretly he enrolled and delivered me to my first oil painting class. I was so intimidated he agreed to sit at my side for 3 hours while teacher John Strong persuaded me to loosen up, look at the forms and have fun. I’ve remained an art student and my paintings adorn our home.  He is an ally like no others and every dieter and artist should have a support person like Steve.

What happens when you first give up sugar

I researched how my high protein, ton’s of vegetable diet will stave off annihilation. But like anyone entering a detox or recovery program, I was nervous about how I would feel.

Margaret explained, “Sugar-loving bacteria and yeast go through a ‘die-off’. They’re literally being starved out, and will send you mad cravings because they’re fighting for their survival. Strategy: complement the sugar cleanse with a good pro-biotic to re-balance the gut flora and give support to the “good guys” who will help you to overcome these sugar-loving “bad guys”.  If you’ve not eaten enough good quality protein & fat for breakfast and lunch, that will l turn into a sugar craving later in the day (this applies whether or not you’re cleansing) Strategy: make sure your breakfast includes enough good quality protein and fat. These really should be your two biggest meals of the day.”

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