Could You Go a Year Without Sugar?

One family's journey giving up sugar for a year. Gasp.

Food plays such a vital role in our daily lives. Eating doesn't just provide fuel for our bodies, food gives us pleasure, escape, celebration, pacification, and more.

It should be easier to eat healthy foods, but for most of us, it's not. However, that's not entirely by our own doing. Food manufacturers do their part to sneak in many additives as well as extra portions of sugars and starch into supposedly healthy foods like yogurt, granola bars, and canned fruit.

Writer and mom Eve Schaub discovered the impact of sugar after watching a video. "My husband showed me a video of a pediatric endocrinologist talking about sugar and what it does in our body. It's much more pervasive in our food supply than we might suspect. I became completely captivated by this video. For several days after I couldn't stop thinking about it. Everywhere I went I saw sugar, and I started to question not only our food culture in America but me personally: What am I feeding my family?"

So Schaub convinced her family of four to do away with sugar — for an entire year. Her book, A Year of No Sugar, chronicles their journey. Her 6- and 11-year-old daughters didn't exactly embrace the notion. After all, what child voluntarily gives up Halloween candy and birthday cake? Schaub says her radical experiment also presented challenges. The more closely she examined food ingredients, the more she realized the prevelence of sugar and it's various bretheran — molasses, high fructose corn syrup, artificial sweeteners — in nearly everything placed on the table. Some foods, like mayonnaise, bread, and tomato sauce, were almost impossible to find without sugar, so Schaub began making them herself.

What was the result of their radical sugar-free existence? Well, she reports no great weight loss, but a definite change in the palate, and an awakening to what it really means to be sugar-free. "We felt healthier, it seemed like we got sick less, like we got better faster or got milder colds. My kids missed significantly less school." Which probably won't win over your kids, but it's worth a shot.

You can find the rest of the article, which appeared at Huffington Post, here.

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