In the spirit of full disclosure, I’ll tell you these two things:
1. I should have called this “giving up dessert for the month” instead of sugar.
There’s sugar in everything! I didn’t read labels to avoid things like wheat thins, bread, and ketchup. I ate all of that. I also drank cocktails, which obviously contain sugar. I avoided a million desserts this month, but I didn’t avoid all sugar.
2. I made a couple slip-ups this month.
I’ll give myself a solid B- for keeping with the original plan. I counted 4 times that I made caved in and ate dessert. So, I definitely wasn’t perfect with this challenge!
Recap of days 16-31
- Days 16-18 were still kinda hard. I mean, sugar is really really delicious, friends.
- Day 19: I caved. I went to Soup Peddler and I bought a Super Baked cookie (my favorite cookie in the whole city of Austin, and it’s pretty ironic that it comes from a juice bar…) and devoured the entire thing on the way to play an Austin Symphony concert. I ate it as fast as I could, racing my conscience, which I knew would kick in at any moment and tell me to stop.
- Day 20: Oddly, after this one incident with a giant cookie, I wasn’t craving sugar that much on Sunday. I got back on the plan and experienced no cravings.
- Day 21: I had a lunch date at Tumble 22 with Kiera. When they brought out a giant piece of complimentary Coconut Cream Pie, I told myself I was avoiding it. I’d avoided harder things this month. I ended up staring at it for 15 minutes and only when the owner stopped by to ask me what I thought of the pie did I have a tiny bit… It’s for blog research, guys.
Miraculously, I was able to have a taste and then stop. No more sugar for the day, and I wasn’t sad about it.
- Days 22-26: All good! Central Market had the most amazing honeydew melon, and I bought two of them in the course of 5 days. I kept them chopped and refrigerated in case of a craving, and I found that a couple pieces of bubble-gum-sweet melon conquered any craving.
- Day 27: I had delicious lemon ricotta pancakes at Josephine House for brunch. I didn’t even regret it, because these pancakes are so good and I had legitimately been craving them for 27 days. (Pancake cravings can’t be met by healthy unsweetened protein pancakes with berries on top. I know, because I tried for 27 days. I need butter and maple syrup and sugar and flour.)
- Days 28-30. SO BORED. Life without dessert is possible, but it is so dang boring! I miss little bites of dessert. I miss the small size of fromage blanc and apricot jam gelato at Dolce Neve, tiny squares of sweetened dark chocolate (I’ve been noshing on unsweetened all month, and that chocolate is trying with all its might to help me out, but bless its heart! Chocolate needs some sugar in it), and delicious vanilla bean macarons from La Patisserie. I can’t wait for this month to be over.
- Day 31. I had a media tasting at The Brewers Table, and I really want to order dessert. Again, it’s FOR RESEARCH. Very official things going on here, people. I order the smallest dessert item, a teeny ice cream cone the size of my thumb. When the waiter says, “it’s so good, I just always wish I could eat three of them!” I smile and nod, but I’m thinking, “nah, I’m actually good with 1.”
This is the best and strongest way I can think to end my dessert-free month. A small mistake (can I call it a mistake if it was on purpose? Haha.) and a realization that I can have a small dessert and stop and be fine. And I can live without dessert and also be fine.
Did I feel different when I wasn’t eating dessert?
Not in any huge ways. I noticed a bigger difference in my sleep when I was doing a month of meditating every day. My tummy felt a bit flatter, but nothing drastic. I noticed some withdrawals in the first two weeks, and my mood went a bit crazy. (Read about that here.) But ultimately, since I was still eating gluten and alcohol and salty fried foods, I didn’t notice a huge health change.
Has my sugar craving died down at all since the month ended?
Absolutely! I dont’ think it was a major “fix” and I’ll never crave sugar again (haha – I got a donut on the day I was done for National Donut Day), but I think that smaller treats make me happier now. Ultimately, I just don’t want to feel like I need sugar in order to be happy.
Will I keep it up or repeat the challenge?
I’m not keeping it up, because I think I live best when I get to eat anything I want by listening to my intuition. When I deprive myself in one area, I tend to compensate by overdoing it in another.
But I loved hitting the “reset” button this month, and I’m sure I’ll do another dessert-free challenge again in my life if I feel like my sugar cravings are getting out of control.
What did I miss the most?
Ice cream!! Dolce Neve Gelato, soft serve, Lick, Amy’s, pints of Bluebell in my freezer…I love it all, and it’s my favorite treat during the summer. I’m happy to have ice cream in my life again.
My next challenge was supposed to be waking up at 6 every day. But since I’m traveling 15 days out of this month, I’ve decided to flip June and July and save my early-morning challenge for next month.
This means that in June I’ll be writing in my gratitude journal every day. Yay! Super excited to make this a daily habit for the next 30 days!