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Sugar Free September epic fail

Ben fell at the first fence

You may recall that earlier this month we pledged to give Sugar Free September a go. If I’m honest Sugar Free September hasn't gone according to plan in the Pearson household. Our excuses are poor at best and now it is time to name and shame us all.

He was caught on day 2 helping himself to some leftovers from the fridge that didn't overtly shout sugar but ‘contained’ it. He is normally the strongest in the house when it comes to resisting temptation, being the dentist and all that, so he was naturally rather disappointed with himself and vowed to get right back on the wagon immediately. That was until the Jaffa Cakes got passed around at work a day or two later! So his results have been sporadic. I wouldn’t say he has totally failed because he normally watches his sugar intake and but he definitely hasn't been sugar-free. Fail.

Our eldest daughter didn't stand a chance.

The first weekend saw her go off to do her Duke of Edinburgh Silver Award hike across Exmoor. The weather forecast was pretty poor and so it was obvious that she was going to need plenty of something just to keep her going and her morale up. I was so embarrassed at the shopping list of “nourishing treats” that she gave me that I went to the supermarket at the dead of night in the hope that no one would spot me. I got away with it and she survived the hike. On her return she stashed the leftovers and then revealed various small items in front of her siblings, with whom she was totally unprepared to share with. “You’re supposed to be doing Sugar Free September!” she would say with glee as she shoved another handful of Haribo sweets into her face! Fail.

Daughter number 2

She plays a lot of hockey and has a habit of getting very irritable if she doesn't eat regularly. She was the one most opposed to the whole idea in the first place mainly because it is her birthday at the end of the month and she was very keen to invite some friends for a sleepover and a trip to the new Kaspas gelato & dessert house in Market Street. It’s every teenage daughter’s dream restaurant and every dentist’s nightmare! Over the years as a family we have found that “everything in moderation is ok” and “clean your teeth thoroughly afterwards” fairly good mantras to adopt and so, taking us to our word, she chose not to take part in Sugar Free September. Abstained.

Youngest daughter up for a challenge

Youngest daughter is still at an age where she wants to please Mummy and Daddy and so she was up for the challenge, for a while (4 or 5 days, that is). But of course chocolate sponge and chocolate sauce were on the menu at school and within no time at all she had returned home with her tail between her legs having succumbed to sugar temptation. Fail.

Did I fare any better in my resolve?

I was doing alright until we had friends round for Sunday lunch and they brought pudding. Surely it would have been rude not to? Fail.

So pretty poor results all round, but what have we learnt from our feeble attempts at being Sugar Free for just 30 days?

Well, interestingly none of us saw our slip ups as just ‘temporary’. We didn't appear to have the right attitude. Once we had inadvertently eaten something sugary that was that. Game over. No need to try any more.

What I want to know is where has our will power gone? Where is our ability to step up to a challenge and overcome adversity? Why are we totally awash with sugar in our diets every which way we turn? Why is it so very difficult to cut back or give it up completely, and why is it that if you suggest that you are doing that, everyone thinks you are slightly weird?

I’m going to ask my nutritionalist friend, whose mantra is “Are you nourishing your body or just feeding your face?”, and see if she can help.

In the meantime, anyone for Go Sober for October?

Rebekah Pearson
Rebekah Pearson
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