Good morning! It’s my only day off this week as I round the last lap of my 2-week stint being on service at work, and it’ll be jam-packed with tasks like laundry, grocery shopping, and food prep for the coming week’s dinners. On the menu for next week: sesame-roasted salmon with bok choy and baby turnips (both of which I scored from my local CSA – @NormansFarmMkt – this week), chicken chili verde with homemade cabbage slaw, and a quick dinner of Trader Joe’s riced cauliflower stir fry with extra riced cauliflower, frozen edamame, and some extra tamari and toasted sesame oil thrown in for good measure. This particular plant-based dinner takes less than 10 minutes from freezer to table, so it’s great for busy work days… and the toddler even likes it!
But before I get to all the shopping and cooking and laundering… my weekly blog post (being composed as I get my daily elliptical workout in before Graham wakes up).
First: an update now over a week past the end of my DIY FMD. My weight is exactly 146.4 lbs today, which is still 2.4 lbs lighter than the day I started the FMD… despite me (sadly) renewing my secret love affair with sugar on a daily basis over the entire last week. It’s Halloween candy season, people, and my sugar-addicted brain has ruled my roost this week, beginning with those big fat chocolate chip cookies I ate to break my fast 9 days ago. Since then, I’ve had a screaming voice almost violently urging me to eat candy and sweets every day, and I’ve been giving in to those powerful urges rather than making the extra effort to control my behavior. So, clearly the majority of my weight loss from the FMD was fluid and other non-fat losses, but almost half of my weight loss has been maintained despite re-feeding a load of sugary crap all week, so there is some true fat loss in there, too. Score! (I really did it to help mitigate health risks, especially delaying or preventing my own possible future cognitive impairment, so a little fat loss thrown in is pure bonus.)
Next: can we talk about sugar addiction for a hot second? Since I’ve been lying around in my crack den of sugar this past week, it seems timely. There is some debate in the literature about its existence, but I feel strongly that it is a real entity — because I’ve read the literature, and because I myself identify as a sugar addict. There’s a nice review of the science behind the declaration in a piece entitled, “Sugar addiction: is it real? A narrative review” in the BMJ last year. Spoiler alert: it’s real. If you are one of the millions of Americans who, like me, might actually consider pulling a George Costanza and pull a perfectly clean pastry off the top of the garbage if no one was looking, then you, too, might be a sugar addict.
(And if you’re wondering, no, I did NOT pull a George Costanza this week… but I wouldn’t put it past myself if given the opportunity!)
I’m in the very early stages of creating a comprehensive weight loss program designed for sugar addicts like me, because I’m confident that I can help others achieve massive weight loss as I’ve managed to do even in the face of sugar addiction. Suffice it to say that as long as we continue to feed the drug to our addicted brains, we continue to reinforce the behavior of overeating sugar with the reward of natural endorphins that make us feel good in the moment, allay anxiety, loneliness or sadness, even decrease physical pain: there’s a scientific reason why obstetricians use sugar in an infant’s mouth during the somewhat brutal procedure of male circumcision, for example. Apologies to my male readers for bringing up the image of penile pain, but it’s a great illustration of the power that sugar has hijacks our brains. I would offer for anyone who finds themselves compelled to eat sweets and simple processed carbs even when they’re trying not to, and/or has difficulty stopping after having a few bites, that removing the drug (aka sugar) entirely for a minimum of 6-8 weeks to quiet down our ravenous brains’ screaming (and start practicing a new habit to help replace the old well worn path of the sugar consumption habit) can do wonders for your mental, and physical, peace. And with that, today I am declaring publicly that I am going back to strict to NSNF (no sugar, no flour) this very moment as I get back to my efforts to achieve my dream weight of 135. Yes, I am making that declaration just 4 days before Halloween and the influx of candy and sweets that will flood my life later this week. I know I am capable.
And so are you.