Friday, June 24, 2011

Getting the artificial stuff out of my life...

Growing up in the 80's, I learned that sugar was bad for you. This was reinforced all the time (low-sugar cereal, reduced sugar juice, etc).

It was only natural that I was drawn to all things artificial... if they contained less sugar or fat (or none)the assumption was that they must be better for me, right? I regularly searched out all things fake...syrup for pancakes, whipped cream, creamer, ice cream (yuck, I know)and Popsicles.

Two of my main addictions, used daily, were spray butter and sugar-free sweeteners (for my coffee). In fact, until I made the decision to stop using "fake food products" I could not even recall the last time I had used REAL butter. On anything. Seriously.

For those of you who are wondering, "what hell is spray butter?" I am not even sure how to describe it properly. I guess you could call it: a mix of chemicals that are combined to mimic the flavor of butter.

Oh, and you can spray the chemicals right onto your knife required. This in itself should have scared me. I was literally spraying chemicals onto my food! My husband was particularly not a fan of the spray. He thought it sounded like I was putting cleaner on my toast.

My other vice was sugar-free sweetener in coffee (splenda, syrup, equal, etc). Not just a little bit either. I would unload the stuff in there, pleased that I was cutting out 100 calories and making a healthier choice. Or was I?

A couple of weeks ago, I started getting headaches at work. Like, REALLY bad ones. Bad enough that I had to take Advil nearly every day. This was not normal, so I decided to pinpoint the cause. A friend had mentioned once that she could not use "fake sugar" as it gave her pounding headaches, so I decided to cut those out.

And, what do you know...NO MORE HEADACHES! Plus, I found that when I used real sugar, I did not need to use as much.

My next challenge was to start using real butter...not nearly as fun to use, but probably much healthier.

Last Friday, I accepted the challenge and spread an English muffin with honest to goodness REAL butter.

It was delicious...and I actually felt more satisfied. Not hungry right away like I was with the fake stuff. The best part though? I could actually taste the English muffin. The spray butter's artificial saltiness had been completely overpowering the taste of the bread.

Even though it has only been a couple of weeks since my life-style change, I already feel much better. Headaches are gone, I can taste my bagels again, and I am not creeping Adam out anymore.

So, the moral of the story is: getting rid of the fake things in your life (whether it be people or food products)feels fabulous...

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