For as long as I can remember, I’ve had a love-hate relationship with sugar. As a little girl, my mother likes to tell the story of when I was two and inadvertently locked her out of the house. I was so distraught and nervous that I ate two whole donuts, which were left on the coffee table in the living room.
As an anxious child, I was often given cookies, cakes and other sweet treats to calm myself down. This began a lifelong struggle with sugar. I learned to equate sugary foods with love but that kind of love hurts. It caused weight gain and a cycle of addiction that I still deal with – every day.
As a teenager, I broke my ankle right before going into high school. I was in crutches and a cast for six months. The activities that I used to do to keep my weight somewhat in check were impossible. I couldn’t go to dancing school or play outside with my friends. I loved sports from street hocket to football to tennis and baseball. I was not a good runner, but I did try.
Without the physical activtiy and the inability to push myself away from food that was given to me by my parents who felt guilty that they didn’t believe I had broken my ankle right away. I ate and gained about 60 pounds on my already heavier frame. I became the fat freshman and stood out for all the wrong reasons. I remember sitting alone at lunch and being picked on by football players because I was fat. Very fat.
I felt insecure and unsure of myself so I turned to food as I didn’t have any other coping mechanisms at the time. I got picked on at school and picked on at home. The breaking point came when two boys I didn’t know singled me out at the park because I was too fat to be playing baseball with my best friend. That afternoon, I went back home and stuck my finger down my throat for the first time. My grandmother had suggested I try bulimia as a weight loss aid a few months before, but I didn’t want to – until that day.
This led to a cycle of bingeing and purging that would last throughout my adolescence and for most of my adult life. At one point, I had eaten my way up to 444 lbs. I was miserable – and devastated. However, the bad feelings I had about myself only seemed to go away when I numbed myself with sugar. Over time, I learned that you needed more and more sugar to get the same fix. I once ate a whole sheetcake from Costco. I’m not proud of it, but I did that.
Entire boxes of cookies and trays of brownies would disappear in my ever-growing gullet. I went to a nutritionist. I had bariatric surgery – twice – and still struggle with weight management. I also have a dysfunctional thyroid and a day-to-day battle to steer clear of sugar or at least reduce it significantly. There is so much sugar everywhere. I didn’t realize how it hidden in many foods. I’ve learned to read labels and learned to avoid sugar in all its forms.
Some days I’m more effective at this than others. I’d love to tell you that I’ve completely kicked my sugar addiction, but I haven’t. I can use my experiences to help you work through your issues with sugar and with healthy eating. I have walkekd the walk and I have struggled. I still struggle so I get it. I understand.
I’d love to invite you to set up a 60 minute free consultation with me to see what kind of work we can do together. I offer nutritional coaching, mental health coaching and more. Please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.