Monday, February 17, 2014

Food, food, food..

I'm still a bit munted when it comes to sugar. Just spent an intense 2 weeks going through my manuscript for the last time before returning it to the publishers so they can get it printed.. reliving all my horrible last drinking months and the bloody roller coaster that was the start of my sobriety.. what an intense process.

So what do I do? Slowly over the course of the two weeks my diet turns to shit and I start eating loads of wheat again, cakes and sugar. Even doing my awful dysfunctional sugar binging trick of having a tiny bowl of cereal heaped with 2-3tbsp of white sugar on it right before bedtime.

Reaching for destructive external substances yet again when faced with stress or angst or an intense book-editing process. Nice one Mrs D. At least it's not shit-loads of red wine.

Anyhoo… I nervously returned the manuscript today, there's no going back now, and will get back on track with my healthy lifestyle and quest to be the calmest and most perfect human being ever invented in the history of human beings. Ha ha ha.

No but seriously after I stopped drinking alcohol, I replaced it with lots of sugar which after 2 years I realised was also a bad idea.. so I did the Whole 30 programme to sort my diet out, reset my digestive system and get some bad habits away (sugar) and it totally worked and today my diet has changed dramatically. I pretty much don't touch wheat, dairy or sugar most of the time. And that 'base line' diet, while a shock to the system at first, is now not that hard and I've lost lots of weight and feel 'light' and energetic most of the time.

Unless I've got a particular stress on in which case all the good habits go out the window and I binge. Oh well.. can't be a saint all the bloody time.

The good folk at the Malibu Recovery Centre very kindly sent me their new cookbook called 'Dopamine for Dinner' which is rather exciting because I do love collecting cookbooks. But this one is interesting because it has the subtitle 'An easy-to-follow 4 week meal plan to help break the cycle of addiction'.

It's full of amazing recipes (must be a pretty lush rehab) which is great and I've already made one delicious pudding .. but the really interesting stuff comes at start when their 'experts' talk about the diet they have developed over years of treating addicts. They say sugar is the number one transfer addiction (helloooo) and 'sugar spiking' is the main thing they want to avoid for their clients because too much sugar impacts the levels of dopamine in the brain and that complicates issues of brain healing, depression and mood.

There's a lot of info and as I say tones of recipes but basically we addicts need to eat foods that are low in sugar, low on the Glycemic Index. Foods that 'trickle' glucose into the bloodstream not 'gush' it. Eat the tricklers, not the gushers, ok?!

I'm just going to cut it all out again - wheat and sugar particularly. Knowing myself by now.. that I cannot moderate to save myself.. I'm better off just never touching it. Maybe I will end up being that perfectly healthy saint after all.


Love, Mrs D xxx


  1. Sugar the next frontier in my life that needs addressing too. I'll have me some of that 'Dopamine for dinner' - what a lovely idea. I'm a reluctant cook, hubby is the chef of the house, but maybe this will get me interested? ;)

    1. I just had to add: 'munted' now there's a word I love and haven't heard for a long time! :D xx

  2. Mrs. D, I'm doing basically the same Reset as you are now. I'm historically a low carb eater for many years, but found myself indulging sugar cravings during my first 100 days. Now that that's behind me, I'm getting back to the no grains, no sugar. It does feel better. Yesterday I made the Basic Bread from the Wheat Belly cookbook- almond flour, ground flaxseed, chickpea flour- a funny mix of ingredients for which I did not have much hope, the the resulting loaf was definitely palatable enough (and low carb enough) to become a new staple in my eating. I'm looking forward to checking out the cookbook you mention!

  3. I have up sugar and gluten for the month of Jan....I really should already give up sugar again *sigh*. I love sweets so much, and I know the chemical reaction is why. I guess I'm just not far enough and my recovery to do a good job of sticking to it long term yet. By the end of January I was feeling rather violent and angry. I started back slowly with the I'm back to eating gobs of it. *sigh*

  4. I was just thinking this weekend how much my Whole30 changed me and my dietary habits and how glad I am that I did it.

    And don't worry...I ate a fuckload of chocolate chips this weekend and I, unlike you, had no excuse. Still not sure why I did it but it made me sick and I won't be doing it again.


  5. Ah yes, sugar. My love affair with sugar began as early as I can remember. If I have none in the house, I will still go to the cabinet dozens of times a day just to see if maybe I missed a morsel.

    And so it goes, that I shall heed your call and attempt to follow you out of yet another wilderness :) After all, it worked with alcohol!

  6. Mrs D, I did the same, swapped wine for (even more) chocolate, biscuits, cakes etc. Im now day 6 free from refined sugar. Snacking on dried dates and making biscuit-y yoghurts with granola.
    Generally living the dream!!!!! (TIC)

  7. Ditto. I have no excuse except that this fucking winter here will not stop...more snow today! I hate it. I've been eating every sweet thing I can find and last Dr visit my blood glucose was slightly high, ya think! Could it be the pound cake, lemon bars or copious cupcakes. Stopping the sugar and breads ASAP.

  8. Thanks for this Mrs D. It has suddenly clarified a lot of things going on with my sobriety over the last few months. I restarted a diet - a very good programme I have used before pre and post sobriety. But this time I couldn't do it.

    Not only that I seem to be deliberately sabotaging myself. Plus I noticed that if I started eating something like eg cheese, other dairy, I couldn't stop eating it. Just like drinking alcohol.
    Full of guilt and shame, yet unable to stop this awful eating behaviour pattern. Obsessed with food and not in a good way.

    Plus, I started having a compulsion to eat before going to bed, which gives me indigestion and messes up the next day's eating pattern. Yet I can't stop it.

    I feel just as horrible as I did when I was drinking the behaviour patterns are the same. It is as if I have just transferred the whole self destruct thing from alcohol to food.

    I have only just started noticing these patterns and similarities and your mention of eating cereal before bed was a bit of a 'light bulb' moment.

  9. reading this whilst shoveling a wagon wheel in my mouth, yes a wagon wheel. why this stuff is even in the house?! at 6months now but the sugar has got to go. have developed a grain gut. amy in Vancouver, BC

  10. So excited by the book! i can't wait to read it! As for the food, i just spent a week on a pizza binge (which ended with a recipe i invented involving American mustard as a substitute for tomato sauce and hot dogs rolled into the crust!) A reminder there is always someone worse out there, and i don't even have the excuse that i'm a writer on the verge of success!

  11. Hmmm, your new book reminds me of "Potatoes Not Prozac"... we need to feed our bodies healthy foods and supplements to keep us topped up for superior mental and physical health and not fall into the destructive cycle of eating/drinking crap.

  12. "Munted", Oh that brings back some memories and places me squarely in that generation :) Love it. You are awesome Mrs D.

  13. I was never much of a sugar fan other than the occasional bowl of ice cream and a few candy bars over Halloween. However, sobriety seems to have kicked my sugar cravings into hi gear. If it's not one thing it's another I guess.

    I decided a few days ago to eliminate all sugar from my diet for awhile. Total abstinence seems to be the only thing that works for me, unfortunately.

  14. Sugar beast. Valentine's chocolates for nine cents each! I'm off my whole 30 and in to regular eating again. I get so tired of worrying about it sometimes and then say I'm not going to! And then I do again. Ongoing, annoying. :)

  15. yeah, the sugar beast has slayed me again. I am thinking of cutting again. This sucks, because I have sort of cut down, but in reality, I think it's crept back up lately. It's a tough one, this sugar, Mrs. D. Stealth bomb. But we all did this, we can do it again.

    i do remember the benefits of 3-4 months of no sugar. Hard, for sure, but I had lots of wonderful moments where I didn't crave.

    Thanks for this :)