Around the end of February, I decided to give up sugar. I wanted to cleanse my body, get over the cravings of an addiction, and add in another layer of healthy living to my life.
Here are some negative qualities of sugar that I’ve come across in my reading:
bad for the liver
linked to cancer
fattening and can lead to obesity
can cause heart disease
can be highly addictive
How much sugar did I actually consume before eliminating it from my diet? Well, being a (mostly) vegan, I don’t eat cookies and cakes and such, but I do like chocolate! My latest chocolate binge began in December and carried on into the new year. There is always a lot of chocolate around during the holidays and then once Christmas is over, chocolate goes on sale and ya gotta buy it because it’s such a deal! And, I have to admit, I was eating milk chocolate – so deliciously sweet and smooth; so very not vegan; so very addictive!
So, at the end of Dine Out Vancouver, I said, “That’s it! No more sugar!” I anticipated that it was going to be somewhat trying when I embarked on this sugar elimination campaign, but I was pretty sure it wouldn’t be too difficult. I was wrong! It was, and it continues to be, hard. It’s been about six weeks with no sugar and I still get cravings! At first, the cravings were every day, mostly in the evening. Nowadays, those cravings have tapered off, but every now and then, maybe a couple of times a week, when I’m relaxing in the living room in the evening, I get this restless craving for something … a nice big bite of milk chocolate! So, how do I deal with these cravings? Well, I live with a terrific partner who, for the most part, stays away from refined sugar. I’ve discovered Larabar, an energy bar made from dates and nuts.
Plus, “Tom” and I have been exploring sweet replacements for sugar. We’ve always eaten a lot of fresh fruit, but now we eat more during the evenings – the danger time zone when fighting sugar addiction – such as fresh pineapple, mango, oranges, apples, bananas. (“Tom” is cutting up some pineapple as I type)!
And this brings me to the recipe I want to share with you. This salad is so sweetly, deliciously yummy that you could (and I have) eat it for dessert! The recipe was developed by Sherry Strong of Return to Food (http://www.returntofood.com/).
Now before you freak out about the colour and look of this salad, let me explain! I used my spiralizer for the first time to make this salad and I made spirals our of some wonderful organic purple carrots that I received in my CSA box. Looks kinda weird, but taste was yummy!
1 large carrot, spiralized or grated
1 large apple, spiralized or grated (skin on)
zest and juice of 1 lime
1/4 cup raisins, chopped
handful of walnuts, left whole or coarsely chopped
Toss the carrot and apple in a bowl with the lime zest and juice. Stir in raisins and walnuts. Eat! Simple, quick, healthy, satisfies the craving for sweet. Yum!