Monday, September 5, 2016

How long will it take? (part 1) My life without sugar is sustainable and certainly not dull!!!! Cookie-less for 4+ years now

How LONG will it take? Part 1 in a series of blog posts about barriers to being normal weight after morbid obesity.

Abstaining from sugar, how long will it take for this free tool to be encouraged by healthcare professionals?

Had to laugh this morning. An RD from Canada thinks life might be unsustainable and dull if we stop eating cookies. LOL. Hilarious. And for me, NOT TRUE. Although it may be true for some of you. Maybe for him,  full life stops when cookies and sugar stop?  Lack of cookies makes for a dull life? Wow.

Okay, fair enough for him. For me, I disagree.  Let's walk a fitbit mile in my shoes.

A note  and plea to anyone on social media: Please be respectful if you engage in conversation. Open conversations are gold these days. So be nice. We can be adults and agree to disagree without being insulting. What I want is deeper understanding.  We can agree to disagree on ideas.

Here's the tweet:

It’s not sustainable as would make for a dull life. Imagine never eating a cookie?!
— Mark McGill, RD (@MarkJMcGill) September 4, 2016

Here's the original tweet
 I respect Mr. McGill's opinion.

What I would like is for all RD's &  MD's to understand that millions of us world wide have a much more sustainable, full life without sugar & cookies. Life with sugar and cookies was unsustainable and painful for me. It was dull sitting on the couch, watching the Biggest Loser and eating Skinny Cow ice-cream, morbidly obese. So my family told me later. Life did stop eating sugar.
My life with sugar was painful & expensive

My 2 cents:
I get tired of normals ("normies") telling me that a sugar, cookies, etc are required for sustained, deep life. It's simply not true for many of us. There's nothing wrong with eating sugar, unless it makes your life unmanageable.  For so many of us, the obesity and diseases are and were devastating.

According to the CDC, life with sugar is getting worse each 5-10 years. 

Finally, abstaining from sugar becomes a thing- a free tool for many of us to use as we need, and now cookies and sugar are required so we are sustainable and NOT DULL??

How about advocating for proven tools that are free that work for many? 

WHUT?  Of course life without sugar for me is very sustainable. For others, maybe it's not. It's okay if you choose to eat sugar, if it doesn't make your life unmanageable.

Replace the word "cookie" with the word "beer". On what planet would someone say life is unsustainable and dull without beer to someone in long term recovery AA?

Replace the word "sugar" with the word "cocaine". On what planet would someone say life is unsustainable and dull without drugs of abuse to someone in long term recovery in  NA?

Life without a cookie is awesome for me. Sugar is my drug. I'm not ashamed or alone.

Think about the millions in OA, think FA, think Food Addiction, think those of us who had Auto Immune Disease or obesity and simply don't have the finances or don't WANT to pay big health insurance bills. My company will take $80 out of my pay check if I start eating cookies.

Getting to my root causes: I'm not a bad or weak person. Nope! Let's boil it down to my personal genetic risks:  Science, baby! My personal genetics revealed.

For some of us, we have obesity and binge eating if we eat sugar. Most sugar makes my genotype become my phenotype. I was obese from age 6-46.

I'm not a bad person. I dug deeper into my own obesity root causes.  I've got FTO genes that code for obesity, diabetes, and for me, extra ghrelin (the hunger hormone). I can see this on my 23nMe report with a HTML Promethease report.

Keeping weight off did work when I ditched sugar, Sept 2016
I can live a sustained weight maintenance, very active and exciting lifestyle. I also have a very low risk of what would otherwise be a very expensive type 2 diabetes diagnosis. In 2011, I stopped eating most processed sugar, grains. In 2012 I stopped consuming emulsifiers (guar and xantham gum).  A few months short of getting very sick.

I learned in the book Refuse to Regain, by Barbara Berkeley, MD  that "S" foods- sugar, processed starches, high carbohydrate plants cause many to regain their weight. Dr Berkeley wrote her book in 2008. She's board certified in obesity medicine. Thank goodness she gets it.

Living a full life without cookies, Maui, 2016
It's almost impossible for me to stop eating with 1 bite of a cookie. I can and have started to binge eat  with the extra ghrelin, for days, weeks, months, even years once I get going. Millions are like me. We abstain from certain foods, certain drinks, certain drugs to make life manageable and exciting.

 My life is far from dull. Trips to Hawaii, teaching my teen how to drive a car, traveling for work and pleasure all over, walking 5-6 miles a day, volunteer work in my community. Using my gifts given from my higher power like photography.

Life is not dull for me. And I'm single head of household, too. I earn the money, I have the fun and put great community project time in to where I live. No sugar coating required.

Far from dull and unsustainable.Abstaining from sugar, cookies and other binge triggers (processed sugar, all grains, and emulsifiers) has had a positive impact.

Now don't think I'm not telling the truth, I can eat a couple of squares of 85% chocolate (2-3 grams) per day without sinking into ill health. But could I live without it. Sure, I have and I could.

Food sobriety, sugar free, is > any cookie, cupcake or slice of bread. For me. Your milage may differ.

How long will it take before abstaining from sugar becomes an accepted thing in main stream medicine? I for one, am tired of waiting.

You don't need a genetics test. Food elimination diets are a thing. Are you better off abstaining from sugar than before. Okay then!

What's working for me:

1. 4 years normal BMI post 40 of morbid obesity
2. I get my insurance discount for normal glucose, BMI, low hs-CRP, and waist measurements.
3. I don't have joint pain all over, so I can paddle a kayak, jump over boulders on trails and be active.
4. I get up off the couch and my sugar stupor and do community volunteer projects on trails.

What didn't work when I was cookie and sugar fueled

1. Overweight from sugar and processed foods age 6-46
2. I was 4 months away from missing my insurance discount for metrics I could have controlled.
3. I had so much joint pain that I was in tears much of the time and sitting on the couch.
4. I didn't participate fully in my community due to the pain, the pain of obesity

That's it. Who else enjoys a vibrant, exciting, full life without cookies and sugar? I can't be the only one. ;)
A big thank you to Barbara Berkeley, MD, Franziska Spritzler, RD, CDE, Vera Tarman, MD and countless others who understand life beyond the cookie.


  1. Spot on. You should Reilly to his post, nicely about the FA or OA bit. He might change his tune...

    1. Oops. Reply, not Reilly. Darn you autocorrect.

    2. A Woman of Substance: Yes! Abstaining is a thing. It's great the tweeter was obese, now normal weight and can eat cookies. Yayyyy! Many people can moderate- think long time successful WW members.

      But about 40% of obese (Food Junkies, Vera Tarman, MD) have some degree of Food addiction. For them the only sustainable way is to abstain from their triggers. Triggers vary, so abstaining plans vary a lot, too.

      If health care professionals present abstaining as "dull" or "unsustainable" they've really cut out the population that is ailing the most- IMO. Not offering that tool to folks who can benefit. Whut, the WHUT?

      Overeaters anonymous, Food addiction anonymous, Paleo, Primal, LCHF, Keto, LowCarb USA, Diet Dr- Andreas Eenfelt- Sweden, Eric Westman, 2 Keto Dudes, Keto gains, Ketovangelis, No Sugars No Grains- Vinnie Tortorich, Better than Before - Gretchen Ruben, The Sugar Free Resolution- Karen Thomson (South Africa) and Vegans and Vegetarians- think Rich Roll- too abstain from foods that don't work for them.

      Thanks for stopping by the blog. With the internet and support groups that are abstinence based