Treats to celebrate a holiday or milestone are special and often become tasty traditions we look forward to. When it comes to various Church feasts, birthdays, and the like I usually make the desserts, but there are still a few times in the year I throw caution to the window and “splurge.” Easter has always been one of those times.
Since the I have been a small child it’s been Cadbury Mini Eggs that have rocked my world. My aunt put them in our baskets every year growing up, and then from the time I was a teenager to last year, I always grabbed a bag toward the end of Lent, eagerly anticipating my bad-for-me goods after weeks without sweets.
So Bad They’re – Really Bad
Refined sugar is really really bad for us. It’s literally an anti-nutrient, meaning that not only does it not have nutritional value for us, but it requires our body to use up nutrients to digest it, thus depleting our stores.
I don’t eat refined sugar in general but let me tell you…when I do eat lots of refined sugar, I feel awful. Terrible. It makes me anxious. I get nauseous sometimes. It even makes me feel depressed (and of course gain weight) when I have it frequently.
When I have one small portion of something sugary, I don’t feel sick, but food has always been my kryptonite, and once I start with sugar it’s very hard to stop. There is good reason for this too – as you can read here, sugar really does effect our brain like a drug.
Not eating refined sugar doesn’t mean I never enjoy desserts – I just enjoy ones sweetened with real honey or maple syrup. Cakes, brownies, cookies, or ice cream made from either of those natural sweeteners don’t start me on a sugary-heart-racing-anxious-overeating-I-feel-awful-roller-coaster.
Stopping the Cycle
This year I’m saying “no more.” I’m not getting those stupid mini-eggs.
I’m not going to trade a few minutes here and there of cheap-sugary-chocolate pleasure for an Easter evening of an upset stomach and the racing, anxious thoughts that sugar gives me. I’m not going to live through a couple days with the guilt of eating a whole bag (because let’s be honest… that will probably happen).
I’m not going to experience all the awful things lots of sugar does to me like I always have in the past.
When I’m celebrating Christ’s victory over death, I’m not going to do something that I know leaves me feeling defeated and frustrated when it’s over.
I’m going to make a naturally sweetened cake with homemade whipped cream frosting. I’ll probably make some maple-syrup ice cream, too. It will be delicious, and I’ll truly enjoy every bite.
Sometimes we tell ourselves this lie that we have to do things the way we always have – traditions, you know? But not this year. I’m turning over a new leaf and am going to celebrate heartily with some sweets that are in the end a treat and not a punishment. It’s never too late for me to make a change, despite years of my garbage Easter candy indulgence.
He makes all things new, including me.