Seven days without sugar: day five 

This article originally ran on June 12, 2016 on
Today was a sad day following the news from Orlando.
But I did try to maintain a sugarfree diet, eating an orange, low fat Swiss cheese, air popped popcorn, and a peach. However, after watching the news, the urge to eat some of those hidden shortbread cookies became overpowering. I ate three.
The connection between emotions and sugar addiction cannot be underestimated. As children, we're given a lollipop at the doctor for good behavior; chocolate bunnies at Easter; advent calendars with chocolate behind each window at Christmas.
Parents who packed their children a healthful lunch were often ridiculed, as I remember. My own mother strived to keep my brother and I on track, but single, working moms can only do so much. Who doesn't remember emptying a pillow case of Halloween candy and chomping on it all night?
We have a real obesity problem in this country. I'm not obese, but I understand the impulse to eat the wrong foods, to pacify myself with a bowl of vanilla ice cream or a candy bar.
At this point, I give myself a B for how well I've done, but I can do better. Summer is ripe with fruits of every color and texture. Watermelon and cantaloupe satisfy a sweet tooth without adding to our waistlines.
HOW I FEEL: Optimistic. Changing eating habits seems to be one of the hardest challenges there is. But if I can halt the onslaught of dental problems and get my 35-inch waist back, I 'll be happy.
Photo: The author in front of now defunct Wanda's Sugar Shack in Milford, Conn. Wanda was terrific. Miss this place.


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