I am going to let you in on a bit of my story. I have this dance I have done with sugar for most of my life. Probably quite a few of us do. When I talk about sugar in this way, it’s usually just good old cane sugar. I know other sweeteners and even fruit affect me, but their impact doesn’t usually feel quite this strong.
Today’s discussion centers around the granular white stuff. I go without it for a certain period of time, sometimes days, sometimes week, sometimes a year (!), and then it works its way back in and I am reminded of the many ways I am affected. Most notably this month it has been fatigue and lack of motivation. In essence, I have felt like a slug.
So, coming out of the other end of my month-long sugar dance, I would like to offer a few things that work for me to help ease off sugar while still honoring my body’s need for the sweet taste. I am sure I will have more strategies to add in the future, but these are the ones I am using right now.
1. Eat more sweet vegetables. These include cooked carrots, winter squash, cabbage, onion and more. These vegetables give our bodies a mild good quality sweet flavor while being nourishing and relaxing at the same time. Creamy sweet vegetable soup. Nishime. Sweet Vegetable Jam. Onion Butter. Blanched Vegetable Salad.
2. Verne Varona’s Top 10 Sugar Craving Strategies. This list is near the bottom of the linked post.
3. Sleep when tired. It’s so easy to grab something sweet to keep us going when we are tired. Take a nap. Go to bed early. Rest. It seems obvious, but I think it’s an important one to keep tabs on.
4. Sweet vegetable drink. This is a simple home remedy that can help with those sweet cravings and dips in energy that can occur mid-morning and mid-afternoon. Find a nice relaxing place to sit and drink a cup of it hot or warm. It has a mild sweet flavor and relaxing energy that will help ease some of those cravings.
Because winter squash is now out of season, I have been replacing it with dried daikon in this remedy. You may also just use more onion, carrot and cabbage to replace the 1/4 cup of winter squash. I make enough for two days and drink one cup in the afternoon at about 3 pm. I only make this remedy when I am feeling like I need some support while getting off sugar or when I am feeling tense and roller coaster-ish. I will continue making it daily for between 5-10 days depending on how I am feeling.
Sweet Vegetable Drink
4 cups water
1/4 cup finely diced onion
1/4 cup finely diced carrot
1/4 cup finely diced winter squash
1/4 cup finely diced green cabbage
1. In a large saucepan, bring the water to a mild boil. Add the vegetables. Let come to a boil and then lower the heat to simmer gently. Simmer for 20-30 minutes. Remove from heat.
2. Strain the vegetables out, reserving the liquid. Serving size is 1 cup of the liquid. Will keep refrigerated for two days. Compost the strained vegetables.