We all LOVE our food. How can we not, when we walk past the local bakers and we see the chocolate eclairs oozing with whipped cream and glistening with chocolate sauce?
Going Sugar Free at first can be difficult, but I honestly do not believe it is as difficult as going cold turkey on food in general. I mean, most people when they want to lose weight do one thing, they cut the calories. OK, so you start to lose a few pounds and you feel good, then come Friday night, you want a few glasses of wine or a bottle of beer and you're back to where you started.
It's OK, I hear you say, you will start Monday.
How many Monday's have you been wanting to start that diet?
We have ALL been there.
We need to eat, we do not need to count calories, we need to stop weighing ourselves and we need to just think properly. A sugar free diet does not mean you have starve. You can still eat the same foods, but just without the sugar.
So let's sit and think.
What do we love to eat on a Friday?
OK! Why not.
The spicer the curry the less sugar, so ignore your Kormas and Chicken Tikkas these do contain sugar, but your Bhunas, Madras, Vindaloo all are sugar free. OK, the oil in which they are soaked in may not be the 'healthiest' but this is all about balance.
Having sugar and oil is extremely bad, having just the oil I deem as being OK. We are human, do not forget, so keeping just sugar free is enough to begin with.
Placing too much restriction on absolutely everything will leave you back at square one.
If you follow my simple rules, you will lose weight in no time.
Step 1 – No more than 5g of sugar per 100g
- Read the labels
- No sauces, but if you must a very tiny drizzle
- Ask at the restaurants / takeaway you visit to create the dish you want but just with no sugar – so you can still enjoy your favorite meal and be losing weight at the same time!
Step 2 – Low Carbs
- Try to eat more protein than carbohydrates. I use the 60/40 rule. So 60% of my plate is protein and 40% carbs.
- Introduce fats into your diet. I have a teaspoon of coconut oil into my hot fruit teas, I cook with avocado oil and I eat lots of avocados, good fats do not make you fat – they fill you up and help you lose weight.
- No white refined carbs such as pastries, bread etc – switch to wholemeal, granary, seeded etc
Step 3 – Try to leave something
- Every time you eat, I want you to try and leave 'something' on your plate. This will stop you overeating.
- You do not have to waste the food, put it on a side plate and eat it 2 hours later. So instead of stuffing yourself and feeling full THEN eating a pudding, split your meal up and graze through the day.
Step 4 – Little and often
- Eat every 2-3 hours (small portions)
- 3 Main Meals Per Day
- Snacks in between (nuts, humus, avocado, homemade nutella, 1 dark chocolate square, boiled egg)
I would not worry about counting calories. This is really tedious and only creates anxiety. Instead, follow the steps above.
Cutting down on the sugar as part of your sugar free diet is the main part of the journey to success. You do not have to stop eating. You just need to make alternative decisions!
For example, I love donuts.
So why not make some high protein, low carb donuts with ZERO sugar? Using a sweetener called Xylitol which can be purchased online is great for baking with as a sugar alternative it is 100% natural and sweet just like sugar, but it does not have any calories!
There are lots of Sugar Free Recipes on Pinterest and Google and there are many online ingredients that sell sugar free options if you do not have time to bake or cook.
- Sugar free does not always mean it is good – read the label.
- Sweeteners are just as bad as sugar and do affect blood sugar watch out for dextrose, glucose, fructose, corn syrup, modified maze starch – avoid!
- Get a pen and paper and plan out some meal ideas
- Look at alternatives for everything you love eg Chocolate switch to Dark Chocolate or make homemade cookies or Sugar Free Chocolate Cake
- Get motivated with a friend, you are more likely to succeed with your goals if you have someone to keep you going
- Do what exercise you enjoy. Do not force yourself to go running if you hate it, this will only deter you from your end goal.
- Remember to enjoy! Dieting can be fun, you can learn and be creative.