I have low blood sugar. Alright, I’ve never been technically diagnosed with Hypoglycemia but thanks to my mother, biological grandmother and legal grandmother I need to eat hourly or I start getting shakes, headaches, cramps, coldness and really really bitchy.
Recently my therapist and I have been discussing the idea that perhaps my depression isn’t some chronic biological hormonal imbalance thingy but is linked to my food and sleep patterns (mixed in with my artistic temperament, translation: Emotional whacko) . Huh. Well, seeing as how I re-doing my sleep schedule would involve me turning off the internet before ten and closing my book before eleven I decided to think about my whole relationship with food.
To be honest I didn’t have any profound insights other than: Lady Jane, your eating habits are fucked up.
I always knew that I wasn’t the healthiest eater but my body seems to burn fuel faster than Keith Richards going through a pound of coke so sugary, junk food stuff never seemed to be a problem for me. But what I came to realize is that what I was eating only contributed to my extreme food related mood swings.
Let’s start at the morning (assuming this is a day where I am home from school). After not eating for ten hours or so (also a period known as post-diner and sleep) I’m starved in the morning. But when I’m starved I can’t make a single decision and so it ends up with me storming around the kitchen screaming about how there is nothing for breakfast. If I end up eating something it is usually Cheerios with at least (and this is me being literal) six tablespoons of sugar. The sugar high keeps me going for a few hours but by noon I’ve crashed and being to stamp around the kitchen screaming about how we have nothing for lunch. If there are cookies, donuts or similar baked goods I eat those until I feel sick and then go have a stomach ache. By 1.30 I’m craving food. This is the part where I eat a few spoonfuls of sugar to keep me going until my 3.30-4.00 meal. This meal is the point where I eat crackers or chocolate chips (lately Baker’s Chocolate if I’m really jonesing) or a few more spoonfuls of sugar. Dinner, if I’m eating alone which I do about once or twice a week, is something heated from a can or Ramen. Then I crash and crawl into bed after two hours on the computer.
(I left that as one long paragraph to give you sense of how I feel at the end of the day.)
Something’s got to give and it’s got to be sugar.
The truth is that I use granulated sugar as a homemade insulin but unfortunately it only makes things worse. When I feel myself crashing I pump some of that lovely white powder into my stomach which only serves to delay my unavoidable crash and then makes said unavoidable crash all the much worse when it finally occurs. And the more times I delay it with sugar helpings I only crash that many times harder.
So my New Year’s resolution? Begin cutting back on the sugars. Something that I recently was telling myself was going to be no problem because I had a magic bullet. Citrus. More precisely: grapefruits and clementines. I was telling this to my friend today (who is also cutting back on sugars for the new year) when she crushed my magic bullet. According to the Baroness citruses tend to be full of sugars. (That could explain why I was finding them such a useful substitute.)
Well I guess I have to regroup and get a new plan of action.
New Plan of Action: Moderation! I need to be mindful of my intake. No more handfuls of chocolate chips (though one or two chips are allowed.) No more sugary Cheerios (I’m cutting myself off here, it’s one of my addictions and needs to be killed cold turkey.) And for heaven’s sake, THE SUGAR BOWL IS NOT A SERVING DISH. I need to surround myself with whole grains (home made bread anyone?) and if I really need something sugar then I’d better bake up something yummy and make myself earn it.
Now let’s see how long this lasts…