Week 2 of our Sugar Freedom Challenge addresses a common occurrence: consuming a significant amount of sugar in liquid form. Many times, we actually drink the bulk of our sugar content — either because we’re unaware that it is even there, or because we don’t have a tangible connection to it (meaning, we didn’t add it ourselves, see it, or smell it being cooked in the oven).
It’s easier for our brains to understand that a chocolate chip ice cream sandwich has a lot of sugar in it and we probably shouldn’t be consuming this item daily. However your daily diet soda or Venti caramel mocha (no whip!) is safe. It’s your morning or afternoon pick-me-up. Most often, that drink is a comforting, hot liquid to treat your itty bitty sweet tooth. Eventually it becomes habit forming and is not seen as a major form of our daily intake of sugar.
When it comes to consuming sugar, the drinks we sip are often forgiven of their sins because in many instances we don’t take the time to realize exactly what is in them.This week is about understanding that what’s in our drinks is, most likely, sugar! That fancy juice? The one with the sexy label that boasts a healthy “4 servings of vegetables?” Read the label — you’ll see it contains just as much sugar as a soda.
A very significant part of this progressive 8 week challenge is to recognize and omit the assortment of sodas, sports drinks, energy drinks, coffee syrups, and most processed fruit and vegetable juices. Added sugar and artificial sweeteners in your drinks is SO last week! From this day forward, no more sugary drinks!
You’ve probably all seen these “Rethink Your Drink” presentations created by grade school kids. These are not only astonishing but scary. How do companies get away with making these drinks and labeling them as healthful, thirst-quenching, sport-enhancing, loaded with vitamins and minerals and even slimming?! This week is not only about omitting your bad drinking habits (alcohol is week 7) but being informed and being a smart consumer. As one of these posters said, “You wouldn’t drink 4 cups of granulated sugar would you? But you just did.”
So let’s stop trying to make an exceptions to the rule here (trying to figure out what not-as-sugary drink will replace your current one) and stick with the plan: to eliminate sugar in your drinks. Accept the fact that when you do that, you’re going to be drinking more water and feeling better all around. This rule will carry us through to week 8, so wipe your tears and buck up lady — you’re not alone.
While you’re at it, check out Men’s Health’s Top 10 Worst Drinks Ever. It’s interesting to see that some of the drinks we might grab at the grocery store actually have the sugar equivalent to six Pop Tarts, or four slices of pie.