Living With

The Sweet-Tooth Challenge

Ginger Vieira Health Guide October 26, 2007
  • Imagine a world where you don't crave sweets after dinner.

     

    Can't do it? Neither can I.

     

    So, I recently started body-building training seriously with a personal trainer... and one of the first things he asked me to do was keep track of the food I ate for three days.

     

    So I did -- and I was honest about it. I wrote down the Hershey's chocolate I ate on Thursday and the low-fat ice cream I ate on Friday and Saturday. When I handed him the food diaries, he took one quick look at it and I saw his eyebrows rise.

     

    "Chocolate?"

     

    A short pause as he read further.

     

    "Ice cream?"

     

    Apparently, chocolate isn't on the list of muscle-building nutrition choices... go figure.

     

    I knew this would be the beginning of the end of my sweet tooth satisfaction.

     

    Body building or no body building -- I've dreamed of ignoring my sweet teeth for many years. Being diabetic, I'm sure, makes it worse, because we always want what we can't have (i.e. sugar).

     

    On the other hand, being diabetic, it seems like it'd be a GREAT idea to actually have some power over that stupid sweet tooth, too.

     

    So it's been about a week and a half since I tossed the ice cream from my freezer and...finished the rest of the chocolate bar...and every evening around 8 p.m. I want sugar.

     

    There's nothing about this eating lifestyle that wouldn't be good for me (or many diabetics, I think), because on this plan I'm not supposed to eat any major carbs after 5 p.m. which means the risk of going to bed with a high glucose or spiking in the middle of the night is greatly reduced as long as I monitor and/or adjust my insulin dosages, too.

     

    But the cravings are still there, let me tell you!

     

    I've been compensating by having more tea (with two packets of Splenda!) before bed...and a couple chocolate Viactive calcium supplements -- I know, how pathetic!

     

    Maybe you're one of those lucky people who couldn't care less about chocolate and jelly beans. Maybe your vices are french fries and pizza. Personally, I could go the rest of my life without french fries or pizza...but chocolate? I don't think so.

     

    Either way, my point is: what is your unhealthy eating habit? How is it getting in the way of your diabetes? Would it be worth it, for maybe even just a week, to omit this food from your diet and see how your blood sugar thanks you?

     

    Now really, a little bit of chocolate every day wouldn't hurt my diabetes, and it won't impede my training too severely either, but the point is that I want to have control over those cravings. I want to be able to ignore it when I need to. I want to be able to resist the darn chocolate.

     

    Basically, I just want to have ultimate control and discipline over the food I put in my mouth, because in the end, it's true: we are what we eat.

     

    If I can discipline myself to avoid chocolate most days of the week, then I can discipline myself to check my blood sugar more often an hour after every meal and before I go to bed. In the end, I guess it's just about discipline, and as usual, trying to be the best freakin' diabetic I can be.

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