Thursday, February 16, 2012


How often do you have dessert? Do you limit yourself and pay close attention to when you eat dessert or do you just have it when it is available and don't have it when it's not? Do you actively decide NOT to have dessert or do you actively decide that, yes, every night there will be some sort of dessert?

Do you eat dessert with lunch? Do you eat sugary cereals; thereby having dessert at breakfast time as well?

The other day I asked Harold to get real with me about my eating habits. I am always real with him. When he asks, "Do I eat a lot?" I always say yes...and then I also tell him that in addition to eating too much at dinner, he doesn't eat at all during the day and the combination of those two eating habits are NOT doing him or his body any favors. I am consistently real with Harold.

So when I asked him to get real with me, I really did want honesty. I wasn't just looking for reassurance or lies.

So he got real and told me this, "You eat too much dessert. You replace meals with dessert even."

And he is right.

Since this weekend when he got real, I've been thinking about this a lot. And I thought about this right through yesterday evening when I counted up that I had had five, yes five, desserts yesterday.

Dessert in chronological order:
1. Cinnamon chip scone. Purchased on campus in conjunction with lunch. It was delish.
2. Chocolate chip cookie, large. Purchased on campus in conjunction with lunch. Again, yummy.
3. Six Oreos with milk. Eaten post-dinner.
4. A cupcake from Sweet Tooth Fairy. Purchased for V-Day, eaten with milk along with dessert #3 above. (Sensing a trend?)
5. Several handfuls of Just Berries (of the Captain Crunch variety).

And, if that list isn't bad enough, I was still skulking around the pantry, thinking about having some Mayan Hot Chocolate that we purchased from a fancy store during the Christmas season.

The saddest part of my crazy dessert day yesterday? It isn't all that unusual. It used to be that I would have dessert every night after dinner. Every.single.night.

I remember years ago when I was the compassionate service leader in my ward and I asked a woman in our ward to bring dinner to a family. She readily agreed one one condition, that she not be required to bring dessert because, "I don't serve dessert to my family every night, so I'm not going to bring dessert to this family either."

I was completely fine with her conditions, but I've thought about it off and on since then. You mean there are families out there who do not have dessert every single night? Why not? What's the big deal?

But then my nightly sweet tooth starting rearing it's ugly head midday as well. And then, all of a sudden, because I couldn't decide between one yummy thing and another, I would just choose two yummy things and eat both.

Clearly, I have a problem.

I've been thinking about going off sugar for a while now. You know, we all hear about crazy people going "off" sugar for a month or two or three. I envy those people because I know I could never, ever do this.

I have an addiction to sugar. I truly do. And as I make fun of myself here in this blog and as I talk about it with my husband, part of me is completely sad and worried.

So this morning as I lay in bed prior to getting up, I decided that today is my "Day Without Sugar."

When you go to AA meetings, do they give you a chip for one day without alcohol? Ok, I just looked online and it turns out they do. And here it is....
So, for today, to my own self, I will be true. I cannot control anything but this one moment. At this one moment I am motivated and thrilled at the prospect. But I also know that when lunch comes around I will be tempted, and then again during the afternoon, then again when I get home from work, then again after dinner while I'm watching TV. The temptations lay all around me.

But I can control this moment. And I think I can go 24 hours, I really want to go 24 hours, without sugar.

Stay tuned...


Holley, Dane Brien & Wesley Berry said...

I know you can! Good Luck! Julie, Kelly and I are doing something similar and we have a challenge going on. You're welcome to join us if you want.

Emalei said...

Oh, Jeanna! I must respond because I have the same problem! I go through times when I'm doing great and times when I bake a batch of cookies and eat 10 in about 30 minutes. I have a weakness for baked goods. Ok, an addiction to baked goods. Here is what is currently working for me. (I decided to make a change last week when I made 2 dozen no bake cookies and promptly at 4 of them before going to bed and had 3 for breakfast! Yikes.)

I cannot deprive myself 100%. This never works for me. I have to give myself a little something or I'll binge after a few days. A little is OK!!! This I have learned. So here is my current plan, but it changes daily/weekly.

Right now I'm on a nutella kick. That stuff is LOADED with calories, but for breakfast, I stir in 1 TB, along with 2 stevia packets into oatmeal for breakfast. It only adds 100 calories, and it's SO satisfying. I bought 100 calorie fudge bars at Costco and I'll have one of those after lunch if I'm desperate. I also have the freezer loaded with varieties of skinny cows.

Grocery stores are stocked full of low calorie sweet options. I'm thinking 100 calorie cookie packets.) I usually keep those around (or when I worked took 2 to work with me), just to satisfy that sweet tooth. If I don't have at least a little "treat" during the day, I find I go from one extreme (no sweets) to the next extreme (LOADS of treats) pretty fast. It's nice to have at least a little something to look forward to at the end of the day!

Sorry for the novel of a comment, but I SO relate to this issue, and hope this helps! You can do it!!! :)

Julie J. said...

I think 24 hours is a good start. We do not have dessert every night. But if I really thought about it I'd say that Sam and I both have at least some kind of treat at least once during the day, often times more than once.

Emalei said...

PS: To add to my novel, I just wanted to say that I do allow myself a "real" treat once a week, whether it be a chocolate croissant or a cupcake. Total deprivation just doesn't work for me!!! :)

Becky said...

My ma in law calls baked goods - baked bads....I always think that's funny and definitely more accurate when it comes to calories and fat.

We rarely have dessert. Mostly just on Mondays for our FHE treat. This is not because we don't like treats, it's because I don't like to bake and store bought treats can be pricey. I love OREOS and donuts and OH YEAH PRETTY MUCH ANYTHING, but they are expensive. When we do buy a treat we try to make it last, like really last, a week or TWO. We are SO cheap.

(with all that said. this is NOT true during my last trimester. i buy chocolate, A LOT of chocolate and I eat it anytime I want. but, I feel like I deserve that treat since I'm carrying another person inside my body.)

We do buy or make cheesecake around our anniversary and Valentines day. This time around we got a BIG one and we both have been having two pieces a day. I can totally relate that the more sweets you have the more you want.

24 hours is an excellent start! You can do it!

Brittany said...

I used to have a crazy sweet tooth, always wanting sugar. Pretty much ever since I was little. I still love sweets but have found I don't crave them like I used to... It's more salty things now. Maybe it's like allergies and your body cycles every 7 or so years (or so they say).

Even so, my "tame sweet tooth" puts me at wanting something sweet only once a day. As opposed to ten times a day.

I agree with emalie, if I had to stop a bad habit cold turkey, it wouldn't work. I think that there's something to completely depriving your cravings, it only makes it worse. I think your strategy is a good one. One day at a time. And if you give in one day it's okay, tomorrow is a new day.

Though I will say this much, that is one thing I love about spending time with you and Harold. I know I'm always in good company with my foodies. We always eat well when we're together!