Are you ready for it?
Never mind, it doesn’t matter, because it’s already here. Sugar Season! From October through April, we’ve got at least one Sugar-focused and decadence-encouraging holiday every month. Insult to injury, our good friends at the grocery stores and coffee houses all across the country jump-started Sugar Season back in August. Dear lord. It’s a total set up. The dark and dreary days of late fall and winter beg for sweet and soothing Sugar treats, and then the first glory days of spring make us scramble for bright and uplifting Sugar treats. You’ve got bite size candy bars, kugel, homemade cookies, apple cider donuts, honey cake, Aunt Lucy’s sweet potato fluff, Cadbury Eggs, pumpkin spice lattes, peppermint lattes, heaping mounds of buttery mashed potatoes, crispy latkes, cans of caramel popcorn, shimmering champagne, green beer, and cornbread chorizo stuffing – not in that order, but you get the decadent and delicious picture. (What’s your favorite holiday treat? Email me.) If you were to chat with me, you’d think I was a total hypocrite about Sugar. That’s because I get the same confusing messages about Sugar as you do. Clinical Nutritionists say: don’t eat Sugar, don’t eat after 8pm, and stay on top of your diet or you’ll gain weight. There are research studies on this. Intuitive Eating Counselors say: restricting Sugar will ultimately trigger a Sugar binge, eat when you’re hungry, and fat-shaming is correlated with weight gain. There are research studies on this, too. I’ve got licenses and certifications in this stuff, and I'm still confused. You must be utterly befuddled. After a lot of years of being on the fence about Sugar, I decided to let go of the extremes and develop an approach that sits right with me. Like my friends say, take what you like and leave the rest. I feel confident coaching my clients in my philosophy of Intentional Eating. This protocol brings together what I understand about the physiology, psychology, and mindfulness of eating Sugar. You’re the grown up in charge of you, you can indeed eat Sugar if you want to. The best way to handle it, I’ve discovered, is to eat Sugar with Intention. The fundamental question is: “Why am I eating Sugar?” A question with five little words. The growth comes in, and what I help my clients get clear about, is that first word: Why are you eating Sugar? I can go on and on about this, I love it so much! In any Sugar situation, figure out your “why”. The “why” will tell you the what, when, where, and how much. Think about the Sugar coming your way this Sugar Season. Why would you eat it? Some examples: it’s unique to the occasion, it’s part of a celebration. You’ll need some practice getting clarity, trusting yourself, and being mindful about your choices. Using the examples above: Unique to the Occasion: Cadbury Eggs come once a year. Sit down, focus, and savor that bad johnny. Celebration: It’s tradition, sit down and enjoy a pile of Aunt Lucy’s sweet potato fluff with the family. Compare to: a random bag of mini marshmallows chowed down hand to mouth while standing in the kitchen at 11pm. Does this make sense? Can you imagine how it would feel to experience the first two versus the last? If you’re going to have Sugar, set yourself up to enjoy it, rather than to feel guilt and shame. This might all sound ridiculous to you, it’s certainly a different way of thinking. It might actually be terrifying. I’m suggesting that Sugar is OKAY, which is not a message you hear very often. It’s likely that you’re locked a paradigm where eating Sugar means a loss of self control and a lack of will power. Ironically, making your own decisions and feeling confident about them is the best use of your will power. If you’ve been struggling about how you’re going to get through Sugar Season, I invite you to a Free Consultation. It’s a private one-on-one call, a time for you to tell me what’s going on with you and for us to make a plan about how you can navigate the next six months - so you can enjoy the sweet treats of the holidays and feel great about yourself.