Diabetic Alternatives to High Sugar Snacks

Amylia Grace Yeaman Health Guide
  • Our local organic grocery store has a pastry chef who has won all kinds of awards for her tasty treats. I am partial to her cookies. They're big. They're cakey. And they're organic, made with all-natural ingredients. I give her awards every time I eat one! One winter a few years ago, I got hooked on these cookies despite their carbiness. They became my drug of choice on winter nights when I was fighting the winter blues. But during one of my regular acupuncture appointments, my acupuncturist felt my pulses and expressed concern over what she was noticing. I broke down. I told her about my cookie fetish. She remarked that the excess sugar was apparently doing some wonky stuff to my spleen, as well as a few other unhealthy things.

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    [Note: You don't have to believe in acupuncture to get the point of the story. Nor do you have to have a cookie fetish in order to relate. I know I also don't need to mention how excess carbs drive up your need for insulin--a lot of insulin, especially late at night blocks the all-important fat-burning "human growth hormone" - which properly functioning bodies should naturally release in large quantities about an hour after you fall asleep. When you eat carbs at night, the insulin boost interferes with your natural metabolism process, can contribute to weight gain and messing with healthy sleep patterns.]

    My acupuncturist did a semi-smirk after the tale of my sugar addiction, and she told me quite simply:

    It's just ritual. That's what we all crave, really.

    Create a new ritual!

    And on the spot, she prescribed a new ritual that I absolutely love. (It doesn't mean I no longer eat cookies. It's just that I'm not addicted anymore!)

    * * *

    The Apple and Cinnamon and Tea Ritual

    • Brew some boiling water for your favorite herbal tea. (I love Oolong or green tea.)
    • Slice an apple into thin even slices and lay them out on your favorite dish or appetizer tray.  Note: Presentation is important. It makes the ritual a special occasion. Cookies, on the other hand, are easy to chomp down with little awareness.
    • Sprinkle the apples with cinnamon.
    • Sit down and mindfully enjoy your tea and cinnamon-sprinkled apples. Hint: Light a candle for mood, aesthic pleaure and added shininess.

    * * *

    P.S. Alright, if you're anything like me, upon reading this your first reaction will be something like:


    (Actually, my reaction was more like: "You think THAT mumbo jumbo is going to make me not want my big cakey chocolate chip cookie? Get real, lady!")

    But I tried it anyway.

    And while it didn't provide the same addictive bliss of the cookie habit, it replaced it with a more peaceful moment of ritual. I stayed present with the apple and enjoyed each bite. Slowly, it became my new ritual, and I left behind my cookie fetish (and lost a little bit of extra baggage in the process).

    Sometimes we make it much more complicated than it has to be.

    Sometimes it really is just about creating new rituals and habits.


Published On: November 20, 2009