Tag Archives: Sugar

Me: 1 Sugar: 1

You know what makes a great post-dinner snack? No, not chocolate chips… not chocolate chips… chocolate…

Right, great snack. Toastable, organic, multi-grain waffles with local apple butter (made less than a mile from my house, how much more local can you get?) I was skeptical about the quality of the waffles since pre-cooked foods tend to scare me (yes, I am still afraid of penicillin, indoor plumbing and opposable thumbs) but they seemed fine coming out of the toaster and covered in nutmeggy-appley-creamy goodness they went down like a treat.

I think this is beginning to represent a changing point in my relationship with food. When hunger struck I didn’t rip the door of the cabinet off for chocolate instead I walked like the modern hominid that I am to the freezer and opened it calmly and then attacked the waffle with apple butter. It seems that I really just need to surround myself with good food. When clementines and whole-grain breads are within reach I don’t need to shove sugars into my system.

Yeah, it really is that simple.

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Me: 0 Sugar: 1

Yesterday morning I posted a nice little piece about me and sugar. Specifically how I wanted to begin cutting back on sugar.

Well… yeah…

Yesterday I was doing really well. Sure, I had two pieces of gingerbread (the first one was during my midnight hunger pangs and the second to give  me a boost so I could figure out what I was going to have for lunch). And to be honest I felt like that was good. I could have held off on the second piece until after my yogurt lunch but still, I’ve done worse.

But then came Starbucks. We don’t have a Starbucks within, oh, 1 hr and 30 minutes but we do have those little glass bottles of Starbucks drinks in the general store. I picked up a Starbucks Mocha thingy and after two sips I felt like throwing up. Being the frugal New Englander that I am I kept drinking it but finally admitted defeat and put it aside. The rest of the afternoon was one long period of depressive funk with a massive sugar crash.

Then I had dessert. When my father asked me if I wanted ice cream I said (quite proud in myself), “Nope!” And I could say this confidently because I had a lovely plan. I had purchased a 3 Musketeers bar (my first in at least a year) earlier that day and was going to have myself a little treat.

The instant I took my first bite I knew I’d messed up. See my body started screaming “TOO MUCH SUGAR! TOO MUCH SUGAR! AWOOGA! RED ALERT! ALL HANDS TO BATTLE STATIONS! PREPARE TO FEEL SICK!” But again my frugal instincts kicked in and I ate the whole thing (with the aid of a cup of milk.)

Now today I need to look in the mirror and say: You better watch out, son, because if you eat any sugar today I’m going to smack you.

And trust me, I will.

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Me and Sugars

Raw (unrefined, unbleached) sugar, bought at t...

This counts as a first course for me. --Image via Wikipedia

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…

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I’m Daring!

List of cookies

Image via Wikipedia

First of all, I do not enjoy sharing a kitchen with others. My parents might be lovely but last night’s dinner party left the kitchen trashed so I’m baking cookies and scones in the dining room today. And we’re out of sugar.

It’s that last sentence that lead’s up to me being DARING.

Right now I’ve got it stuck in my head that I’m going to bake these “lovely tuille fortune cookies with a splash of fragrant bergamot” from Gesine Prado-Bullock (link here) and then some cream scones because we’ve got extra cream. As I was setting up my improv-baking center in the dining room I noticed that the sugar cannister seemed suspiciously light.

According to my measuring cup I’ve got exactly 1/2-cup of sugar. One 1/2-cup short of what I need.

A slightly peeved phonecall to my mother inquiring as to whether or not we have a bag of sugar hidden away in the cupboards only resulted in a slightly peeved answering machine message left on her work number so I went to Google. I Googled sugar substitutes and ended up on allrecipes.com where they pointed out that I could try a variety of substitutes. Since I’m in Vermont I’m going with maple syrup and I feel like these cookies could be really good with a hint of maple. Now I’m stressing over the conversions between liquid and dry cups so this is just fantastic.

But, because I’m Daring I’m just going to plow ahead. Because when you’re baking for a Christmas party you don’t need to worry about how it tastes right? All the adults will just be buzzed on eggnog so I could bleed into the batter, bake it and they wouldn’t notice a difference.

Now I’m just freaking out.

New Daring plan! Eat a grapefruit to combat low blood sugar and then if my mother isn’t home I’m just going to dump a gallon of maple syrup into the batter.

By the way: Is anyone else listening to today’s Splendid Table? I’m loving it.

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