I quit sugar for 1 year once. I did The Body Ecology diet which is pretty much an anti-candida diet with a bit more.
It was harder than quitting smoking. After a couple of weeks I did use some stevia which my naturopath said does not elevate the blood glucose and so it was ok. I found using spices I associated with sweet also helped - like cinnamon. When you say no sugar to what degree do you mean? Are you having fruit? Are you having potatoes?
I did not do any fruit or honey. NOTHING sweet. The only grains I ate were millet, amaranth, quinoa and buckwheat.
I was also adding some really good foods like kim chee to replenish enzymes and probiotics to build up my good bacteria.
I think the moderation advice from others is good advice. I did my year without sugar because I was having sever health problems and it was suspected that candida had taken over my body and sugar feeds candida. I did it as a response to a crisis and trying really hard to get off the meds the docs put me on - it was not just to do a little cleanse or lose a few pounds - so for me it was a life saving measure.
I personally think you can get all the nutrients your body needs without having sugar in it. Tons of veggies, good lean proteins, healthy carbs - all components of a healthy diet. I don't think you will do your body any harm by cutting it out but everyone is different so just be mindful.
To answer you about how I knew about the Candida would take too many paragraphs but I was also working with a naturopath at the time. I wasn't on my own.
I highly suggest reading http://www.amazon.com/Body-Ecology-Diet-Recovering-Rebuilding/dp/09...
It will help. You should know that I come from a background of working in a yoga/natural food/apothecary for the last 15 years and I don't get excited about every knew book or theory that comes along. The advice this woman offers is valid.
I am a firm believer in "everything in moderation". I really don't think it is good for you to completely deprive your body of things you normally get in a "balanced" diet. I could see cutting back on sugar, carbs, or whatever if you notice that you have been consuming an excess amount, but not cutting it out completely (unless of course you are allergic).
All the research I have done has shown that drastic, short term diets and cleanses, also known as yo-yo dieting, is not healthy for you. It confuses your body and when you do introduce these things that you are cutting out now back into your body again, your body will hang on and try to "reserve" those things. It can actually make you gain weight.
If it is not going to be a short term thing and you are wanting it to be more of a lifestyle change, make sure you talk to your doctor and do your research so you can make sure you are getting all the nutrients your body needs. :)
I always figure, if my body is craving something, there must be something in it that I need. But again.. moderation. If I am craving chocolate, I won't go scarf down a chocolate cake, but I might have a little handful of m&ms. Chocolate is proven to be good for women in small amounts. I guess that is why we hear women talking about craving chocolate way more than men lol.
Anyway, as I always say.. Listen to your body! If you are doing something to your body and you feel really tired and shaky.. (it sounds like low blood sugar to me) that's not what a healthy body should feel like. That is your body telling you it needs something. These are just my thoughts on the matter. I am not a doctor. I just want you to be safe. :)
Thanks Goldfish, for pointing that out. My body is a perfect example of what "yo-yo dieting" achieves.
My parents started putting me on diets when I was about 14. Crazy insane diets where I might wind up eating grapefruits, boiled egg, and a cup of black coffee as a meal for days on end. What happens when you do that is that your body prepares itself for the next famine; your metabolism slows way down, and your body tries to conserve everything. So of course as soon as you go back to eating a "normal" diet, you gain back all the weight and even a little bit more, in preparation for the next time.
I was raised in the South, so "normal" was fried chicken, mashed potatoes,cornbread, sweet tea, potato salad, and pound cake... and I would get big again very rapidly. Then I would have to go on another diet...and the cycle would just go on and on.
At 26 I went vegetarian, which was a lifestyle change and not a diet, and at this point I am about 995% vegan. Refined white sugar went out of my kitchen a long time ago too.
( but I cannot imagine cutting out natural sugars from foods)...
I eat really friggin healthy foods... and I still gain weight so easy. My daughters eat the same food as I do and have always been slender. I believe that my body is a very efficient machine, protecting me against famine, and that my metabolism has been slowed by years of yo-yo dieting.
Yes I lost weight when I went veg. I have never been so big since then, not even when I was pregnant. Hooping burns a ton of fat off too, but the minute I slow down and dont hoop every day I start putting weight back on.
It is still amazing to me how fast I can gain and lose weight.
I went vegan over a year ago and it really helped my sweet tooth. My body is so off sugar that on the rare occasion I have sugar I get a migraine and never want to eat it again. You don't need to go vegan to get benefits. Just start eating more whole grains like quinoa or millet along with more veggies. My new obsession is falafel wraps. Falafel and hummus yumm.
Good for you and keep up the great work. The sugar detox should be over soon. Usually after day 3 it gets much better.