August 23, 2010

The Sweet Stuff

There isn’t anything I like more than a chocolate chip cookie, or a sundae, or a decadent brownie. I am one of those people who goes for sweets in a heartbeat. Which is a bit of a problem I’m realizing as growing research is pointing to the many health problems caused by eating too much sugar.

Sugar, among other things, causes inflammation and joint pain. Having learned this I've started to take note of how I feel the morning after going to a party, for instance, where I've had more sugary sweets and wine-which is also high in sugar. What I am finding is that the next morning I ache when I get out of bed- especially my feet. I can also feel the inflammation sometimes in my hips, and my hands when I make a fist.

However, being a proponent of eating what you love- I wouldn’t want to eliminate sugar from my diet entirely. But, I have for the most part, started to eat much smaller quantities of it.  I am even able to keep to a “3 bite rule” most of the time. Doing this really helps my joint pain if not all but eliminates it and I have to say that it’s amazing how satisfying three bites of something sweet can be when you know it’s all you are going to eat of it.

Anyway, I am here to say that in terms of aging gracefully, sugar is nasty stuff.  The more you eat it, the more your body craves it, and the stiffer you are probably going to feel. 

So, if you want to feel like a rusty old bike...

Eat lots of sugar :-)

 Photo by Justin Johnson


  1. Your post is incredibly timely for me! I am on my 6th day of sugar free living. I was off sugar for a year when I was thirty and never felt better (but I had also fallen in love so I wasn't sure that it was the sugar!) but I recently read an article on the correlation between food allergies and difficulty losing weight. As I've aged it's become more and more difficult for me to lose weight and I have been on a diuretic for blood pressure and water retention for a long time.

    Water retention is a symptom of food allergies (which may contribute to the aching) as is addiction to certain foods. I am addicted to ice cream and anything sweet. By eliminating sugar I am also eliminating a large percentage of the dairy I was consuming. To make a long story short after 5 days I woke this morning less achy than I have been in months AND I lost 4 lbs.

    Sugar is in EVERYTHING! Cutting it out quickly streamlines your diet to very healthy foods. I feel more satisfied by what I am eating as well. As you say it isn't necessary to go cold turkey but I know myself and I can't handle 3 bites. It was 3 bites that hooked me again the last time. Thanks for this post! It's an important topic for older women.

  2. Thanks Dorothy for your comment. I am so happy that you are feeling better in just 6 days. Thank you for the info about water retention too. I wasn't aware of this. Please keep us abreast of anything else you'd like to share as you enjoy the benefits of a sugar free diet. Sugar is in EVERYTHING and quite honestly just looking at a bag of the white stuff I know that it can't be good for us. This and white flour.

  3. Louise,

    I noticed when I don't have sweets, I don't crave them.
    And as soon as I have chocolate or something with sugar in it, I want more.

    So I have to tell you, I love the 3 bite rule.

    It sounds great.
    With this in mind, a sweet moment here and there will not be harmful but rather enjoyable.

    Thank you Louise for this great post.