Wednesday, December 3, 2008

The stash

If you have been wondering why I keep getting fatter and fatter (I know I have), the photo below should unravel the mystery. No it is not a pregnancy pee stick with a pink plus sign. Sorry.

Behold, our treat cupboard. That's right: we have an entire cupboard with two pull-out shelves dedicated to housing edibles of the sweet snack variety. And recently, this is more of a backup plan, since our counter has been decorated of late with various baked goods and candy we have received as gifts/party leftovers/church fellowship bribes.

I would like to point out a couple of things about the photo, though. In our defense, most of the items pictured are never touched. For example, we dumped Madelyn's Trick-or-Treat haul in the front corner. We don't really care for the selection, but hated throwing it away, you know? Also, most items on the top shelf were intended to be toddler snacks, but we rarely give them to her since we feed our daughter much more healthfully than ourselves, apparently. The brown box right in the middle is bona fide Japanese chocolate-covered potato chips, left here by Yuka. She went home to Japan in June. There are really only a few staple treats here, two of which are indicated by the gaping bags, clearly left open to facilitate ease of handful acquisition without wasting precious time pulling apart the resealable closure.

As owner of (and faithful believer in) multiple Curves facilities, it is embarrassing to admit that I enjoy some manner of delectable treat no less than once per day, and usually more often. The thing is, I manage to exercise 5-6 days every week. We eat healthy, balanced meals most of the time. But it's time to admit that I am addicted to sugar. This is an addiction whose power must rival that of nicotine or coffee, but is so often overlooked. And I'm a victim of it. I know because it is very difficult for me to turn down sweets, even when I'm stuffed full, and even when there is no reason to have them. My mind can be saying to me clearly, 'you don't need to eat this,' and I take another bite.

There is a certain euphoria that accompanies the delicious sweet taste, and it's a deadly combination. I'm sure there is research out there to support my assumption that the chemical effect on the brain is similar to what some drugs would do, although almost certainly more mildly.

I have been working with people who need and want to lose weight for over six years. It is no fun to see them struggle. But as their Curves coach, I can provide information and encouragement; the rest is up to them. I have thus far been blessed with a decent body composition, but I think many of my Curves members looked about like me 15 or 25 years ago too. Everyone started by gaining the first five pounds. I know I need to be more vigilant, but overcoming addiction is hard. Conversely, justification is so easy to come by. And given that it's "The Holidays" (Halloween through the first week of January, you know), I'll be faced with my vice at every turn.

I won't ever be that person who doesn't eat junk food. I love it. I'm happy to pay for the privilege through faithful exercise. I believe moderation, not abstinence, is the key. So the second week of January, I'll start moderating like nobody's business. I swear.

2 comments:

Jennifer said...

I wonder if that sugar addiction runs in the family because I got it too! That has always been my downfall. I am unable to eat sweets in moderation--I can't just have one. Blah! Because of this problem, I'm currently just abstaining. From mid-October to Christmas I committed to not eat any sweets (except three pieces of candy on Halloween and pie on Thanksgiving day). It is hard, but for some reason, not as hard as eating in moderation. Why is it that way??

I'm glad to know I'm not alone, though. :)

Wiyaka said...

Confessions.... My name is Wiyaka and I, too, am addicted to sweets!

My husband loves to have fresh, homemade cookies to take to work. Considering that I love to bake, one might think that we are a match made in heaven. Wrong. I can not keep them around the house because I will eat them. A lot of them. I can't sit down to a whole bag of oreos, but I can easily eat three (generous size) chocolate chip cookies. Bad. Especially when it takes an entire cup of butter to make 30 cookies and 2 cups of sugar!

I believe that a single person can consume 100 lbs of sugar every year.

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