1. Fake it till you make it – sweeteners and sugar substitutes are fine until your palette gets used to the new sugar free you. Beware the ones with the laxative effect. You’ll find you wont need them after a while(or you’ll get sick of needing the toilet).
2. Be prepared, like a girl guide – plan ahead for meals and snacks and have them on hand. A hungry sweet tooth will not listen to reason. (See my Berry Yoghurt Treat in ‘Skinny Food’). I also took Chromium. It’s supposed to help with carbohydrate cravings.
3. The lesser of two evils – if you are in a situation where there’s no choice, make the best possible in the situation. I eat very dark, low sugar chocolate if the urge hits.
4. Remove temptation – do a sugar clean of the fridge, pantry and secret lolly draw(and under the bed and in the box in the closet). You will eat the chocolate biscuits in the cupboard for guests. Guests don’t need sugar. Neither do the kids. Or the dog. Especially the dog.
5. Choose how strict you’re going to be and stick to it – I have very dark chocolate occasionally and a banana a day. I love bananas despite the fructose(sorry Sarah Marshall). I do tough workouts, mountain biking and running. And bananas rock. Especially with freshly ground peanut paste.
6. Face your demons – know your weaknesses or triggers and be prepared. I love cheesecake and mud cake. When there’s cake left after a birthday or occasion, I throw the remainder in the bin. As a result, the bin can’t fit into her skinny jeans.
7. Remind yourself why you’re quitting – weight control, diabetes, health. Its worth the effort.
8. Don’t jump in the deep end – cut back slowly. Quitting sugar, like any addiction, takes time(it took me, honest to goodness, a whole year!). Going cold turkey often leaves you feeling deprived(and cold).
9. Find a new love – real flavour awaits you; check out your fresh food market and health stores. It amazing how beautiful real food looks and tastes(psychedelic baby!). Once your tastebuds reawaken, you’ll love food all over again!
10. Stuff up occasionally, but do it properly – like eat a whole bar of chocolate or 3 pieces of cake. It feels good and then it feels Really Bad. Like a hangover. Trust me. I’ve had a few big, crazy, messy nights and woken surrounded with Lindt chocolate wrappers and no memory of the night before.