This week, my birthday gave me an opportunity for further real-life instruction on some of the things I've been learning lately.
I mention this often, so it has probably come up before on this blog, but a reminder: the people I work with are just absolutely AMAZING. They prove it basically every day, and my birthday was no exception. I was inundated with niceness that day. One of the many ways that happened: an abundance of sweets. I got 2 dozen filled cupcakes, as well as a whole other separate cake, and then a coworker also took me out for lunch at a place where one really MUST do dessert.
Since I am not “on a diet” and since no scale was waiting to wreck my world if I enjoyed my birthday, I went ahead and enjoyed the day. Shared a killer dessert with my friend that was called “Nutella Skillet Cookie” with ice cream on top. Had one of the filled cupcakes before lunch (chocolate, with raspberry filling) and one later in the afternoon (vanilla, with lemon filling) and then another one later that night. OH YES I DID.
I have been reading in multiple sources (most recently being Dr. Fuhrman's book) how sugar, fat, and white flour are the trifecta of hunger stimulants when consumed together. Oh golly. SO TRUE. I might have only thought it was true on my actual birthday, as I noticed how much more I wanted that sweet stuff, once I started. But yesterday (the day AFTER my birthday) showed me further.
I was hungry ALL DAY. Just absolutely craving food. I'd eat, and I'd just want more. This was the old Karen, who can never eat enough, who always wants ridiculous amounts of food and just can't eat reasonably, trying to be resurrected. I ate healthy all day (well...ALMOST all day....it was a really high pressure, high stress day as far as the workload, and I came home and compensated with more filled cupcake yumminess, which was A BAD PLAN). Even eating healthy all day didn't quiet the raging foodaholic in me.
My tactic for fighting back (and I have no idea if this was the right way to go): I didn't try to go hungry. I just (until that tragic end of the day cupcake misstep) ate lots of healthy stuff. At my desk before lunch I ate an apple and an orange and 2 different handfuls of nuts (and lunch wasn't late, so that was A LOT of snackin'...you know?) and then for lunch (which I ate at my desk, being too busy for a break) I had a gigantic greek salad and tomato soup, and still more nuts directly after as my body was hollering HONGRY HONGRY FEED ME FEED ME. I hit the nuts again later in the afternoon....that will be the fastest that I ever wiped out a can of mixed nuts. And I came home and ate vegan chili for supper.
And I still did the cupcake thing, cuz my body and my stress and fatigue levels were just screaming to be pacified.
I'm not sorry it went like this. Why, you ask? Because I NEEDED the proof of how completely deadly that union of sugar, fat, and processed white flour is for me. How large amounts of it turns me from someone who can easily and joyously do portion control and eat beautiful, body loving food into a ridiculous eating machine, just doing everything in my power to pile the pounds back on. I DO really believe that the “large amounts of it” was key in this, as along this journey I have not at any point banned any foods from my diet. I've been having a little sugar, some fat, and occasional processed white flour, and it has been manageable. Large amounts all together, though...I am now convinced are one of the most body-hating choices I could ever make.
Color me grateful for the lesson.