We’ve all heard about the dangers of excess sugar consumption. Too much sugar in the diet is linked to obesity, heart disease, diabetes and cancer. Yikes. Despite these warnings, many of us have a dependence on sugar that we just can’t kick. Who wants to give up cupcakes, candy or even that daily latte?
BuzzFeed staffer Arielle Calderon, who had already lost 100 pounds doing Weight Watchers for two years, decided to give up sugar in all forms for 30 whole days—and the results are pretty astounding. Read on for some highlights from her experiment and learn how you, too, might benefit from ditching sugar.
1. She Saved Money
Because she stopped buying packaged foods and planned out her meals, Calderon bought fewer groceries and went from spending roughly $100 a week to about $60.
2. She Lost Weight
Calderon trimmed a whopping three inches from her waist and hips! One tablespoon of sugar packs about 48 calories. While that doesn’t sound like a lot, the average American consumes 22 teaspoons of added sugar a day, which amounts to an extra 350 calories a day. Over time, those calories can add up and pack on the pounds. Sugar also has no nutritional value, meaning that the calories consumed from it are “empty.”
My sugar detox posts are finally up! There are three total: one about my experience and results, one about recipes I used, and one about my entire food diary. Hope you like it! https://www.buzzfeed.com/ariellecalderon/more-sugar-more-problems (the other two links are in this link) #weightloss #weightlossjourney #weightwatchers #beforeandafter #transformationtuesday #sugardetox #ariellesugardetox #buzzfeedsugardetox #buzzfeedhealth #healthy #noaddedsugar #nosugaradded #sugarfree
3. She Had More Energy
When you cut sugar, you’re likely to replace it with more filling, healthful ingredients. In Calderon’s case, she noticed that she was eating more healthy fats, which may account for her sense of increased satiety and energy, as fat is one of the most filling nutrients.
4. She Realized Sugar Is Lurking Everywhere
When you think of sugar, you probably tend to think of obvious sources—a can of Coke, baked goods, candy. While those items certainly pack a sugar punch, added sugar is in many surprising places, including snack crackers, marinara sauce and salad dressings.
5. She Re-evaluated Her Relationship With Sugar
While Calderon celebrated the end of her 30-day experiment with some sugary items, including peanut-butter filled pretzels and dark chocolate-covered almonds, she says she wants to focus more on whole foods going forward.
Bottom line: Sugar is delicious, but it also poses many health risks. It might be worth it to evaluate your own diet to see how much added sugar you’re getting, compare that to American Heart Association’s guidelines and adjust as needed. If you need some inspiration, follow Calderon on Instagram.