Sugar Free September – Thoughts on Sugar-Free Baking & Update

SugarFreeSeptember2

Sorry I’ve been a bit AWOL recently! I’ve just started a new post-grad, so it’s just taken me a while to get used to a new schedule. I’ve worked out a bit of a plan, so hopefully I’ll stick to it!

Sugar Free September has been going pretty well thus far. I’m definitely craving sugary sweets a lot less, which is such a great thing!

I’ve been snacking on savoury snacks quite a bit, like this popcorn I’ve mentioned before:

Manhattanpopcorn

And I bought a sugar-free granola that was on sale in the supermarket yesterday. It does contain honey, but it’s not overly sweet and honey is the very last ingredient on the list (meaning that it’s the one that there’s the least amount of FYI 😉 ). As it does still have a small amount of sugar, I’ve just been adding a half tablespoon on top of my porridge in the mornings.

PaddyOGranola

I have had one or two slip-ups though.

Remember the sandwich I told ye about last week? Well it had tomato relish in it, and though I didn’t actually see its container, it basically always contains quite a lot of added sugar.

And then when I was out last Thursday night, we were given a complimentary drink each as we were part of a group – a Radler. I didn’t even think to check the label, but sure enough when I was halfway through the bottle I saw that it had sugar added to it.

To be honest though, I’m not really annoyed at myself. My predominant intention when starting Sugar Free September was to break free from the sugary food I was eating between meals.

To go grocery shopping without buying a chocolate bar; to eat lunch without thinking about what sweet thing I could eat afterwards; to say ‘no’ to dessert sometimes.

And that side of the challenge is working out super well – I no longer even think about eating sugary foods. I even refused a free pastry last week, and it’s very unusual that I’d turn down free food. 😉

Lolly&Cooks3
Temptation around Dublin – I had lunch in this café last week… Sigh.

But I’m proud of how the month is going so far and I’m going to plough on for the next few weeks! 😀

MotivationalTryAgainGraphic

I’ve seen loads of refined-sugar free recipes floating around the blogosphere, and I’m not sure how I feel about that.

I’m trying to break down ingrained habits surrounding sugary foods, and I feel like having a sugar-free dessert would hinder that aim – a sugar-free dessert is still a dessert after all. If I’m having sugar-free dessert after every dinner, I’ve just replaced one dessert habit with a different kind of dessert habit, albeit a healthier one.

I’d rather be able to easily pass on dessert altogether.

Also, the point should be made that a lot of refined sugar-free desserts rely on fructose (honey/fruit sugars) which can be just as damaging as sugar. (I know, my granola is a culprit and I’m a hypocrite.)

When September is over, I’ll definitely be seeking to confine sugar to the realm of treats. I’ll order dessert when out for dinner with friends, or bake/eat cookies for my family, but I won’t be eating chocolate everyday as a snack.

At that point, could sugar-free baking be helpful to me? Surely I could turn to sugar-free baking for a treat?

See, I still don’t think that that would work for me.

When I’m treating myself, I’d rather treat myself properly, as I’ve learned in the past that deprivation leads to only bad things.

However, I know there are pretty decadent sugar-free treats out there and perhaps those could be interesting and at times even nicer than the alternative!

Can I just confirm, though, that I’m not against sugar-free baking. I’m just not convinced that it is healthier, or more conducive to a healthy lifestyle than normal baking. I’m very open to trying sugar-free baking as a treat if an appropriately amazing recipe comes along. 😉

Anyway, I may or may not have ordered Joy the Baker’s first cookbook in anticipation of October – not to go crazy, but there are a few birthdays in my family that month, and I’d rather treat myself to home-baked goods than those bought in the shop.

I’m sorry – this hasn’t been the most coherent post in the world, but it’s quite a slippery-slidey issue. There are so many different types of sugar in so many different types of foods and so many different opinions and feelings surrounding all of them.

What are your thoughts – do you bake without sugar? Have you ever given up sugar?

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2 thoughts on “Sugar Free September – Thoughts on Sugar-Free Baking & Update

  1. I did sugar free in January-February. It was crazy what I would eat to fill sweet cravings… oh wait, I still do those things – sweet potatos, kabocha squash, nut butter, unsweetened carob chips… it helped me loose a few pesky pounds I wanted to get rid of!

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