I Survived a 7 Day Sugar Cleanse

I did a sugar cleanse and lived to tell the tale. This is an article as much as it is an apology for my moodiness towards friends and family or if I accidentally drooled while I watched you eat chocolate chip cookies last week. Sorry!

thirsty scooby doo GIFNothing in particular made me choose the first full week of February 2019 as the week, but if my body needed a reset, halfway through winter quarter with snow and slush piling up outside my apartment was the perfect time and place. I worked in tandem with my friend Julia, who definitely tried harder than me and deserves more credit. She actually read nutritional labels while I lazily skimmed them, and she went to Whole Foods to actively grocery shop whereas I managed with my January Trader Joes haul that currently occupied my cabinets and fridge.

Days 1-2 felt about the same. My body did not notice a specific lack of sugar, functioning on its typical balance of fruits, veggies, proteins, and healthy fats. I drank 3 S’wells worth of water and 2 cups of decaf tea before bed. Hydrated, happy, and healthy, I mistakenly thought this week was going to be a breeze and would facilitate effortlessness for the rest of my eating and drinking life.

Days 3-4 were the major dip and quite frankly the hardest 48 hours of this whole process. My stomach started questioning why not one scoop of ice cream or cookie or piece of candy had entered my digestive system in such a long time. Cravings grew and grew, but I did not let them overpower me. Instead I drank more tea and ate an apple as a snack, pretending its crunch was the same as a Kit Kat bar. It was amazing to learn that my body not only wanted unhealthy sugars, but it literally expected them to be eaten within a certain period of time.

gwyneth paltrow hahahah gp i love you bby GIFDays 5-7 were my sweet spot. Not literally, since they were sans-sugar, but I felt myself generating energy naturally rather than using sucrose-packed food and drinks to get me moving. I slept better than ever and, for the first time in my college career, I actually got up when my alarm went off instead of having my sacred 20 minutes of phone-in-bed time. This was the major benefit of the challenge, and it confirmed that my body was feeling the effects of my actions.

The days following my cleanse remained satisfactory. I ate a freshly-baked banana nut muffin for breakfast on Day 8 and indulged in some M&Ms later that evening. Even though I was partaking in sugar once more, I realized that I no longer felt the need to consume everything. A few pieces of candy were more than enough for me when, in the past, I have felt that only eating the whole bag would satisfy some deeply-rooted craving. I would recommend this abstinence from sugar not as a fad diet or a mandatory way to live your healthiest life, but more of a personal reset that will tell you more about your body than you think you already know.

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