I completed my 30 Days Without Sugar challenge. It wasn’t hard at all. Actually it was quite easy and it just got easier. The purpose of the test was to see if I could detect any positive health benefits by going from a low sugar diet to a zero sugar diet over 30 days. I isolated four metrics for comparison.
- Fat Loss
- Better Skin
- Fewer Headaches
- Gut Health
When I dropped gluten from my diet I saw benefits in all these metrics. Not for sugar. Up until the very last week, I saw no improvement in my health by going to a zero sugar diet. On the last week, I did notice a slight amount of fat loss. Very slight. It may have had nothing to do with sugar.
Salted Caramel Ice Cream covered in espresso
Going forward I will adopt a more seasonal approach to sugar. During the summer months, I will have my ice cream and dark chocolate. During the winter months, I will keep my sugar intake to as close to zero as possible. This matches the food supply cycles of our evolutionary past.
Note that my results should not be extrapolated to others. Removing gluten had a far greater positive effect on my health than removing sugar. You may be different. Do your own tests.
Jun 10, 2010 — 8:38 pm
MAS, How come a young healthy guy like you has several headaches a month? There’s something wrong there.
As to sugar in our evolutionary past….when might that have been? Maybe primitive beets, fruits or other complex carbohydrates but white powder sugar or even cane sugar was not something Neanderthals would have known about.
Jun 10, 2010 — 9:28 pm
I eliminated a lot of headaches when I gave up gluten (bread, beer, etc). Not sure why I still occasionally get early morning (4am-6am) sinus headaches. This one has me stumped so far, but I haven’t given up researching.
Nature provides sugar with fiber. We smart humans figured out how to remove the fiber and there have been health problems ever since.
I like the idea of eating more in tune with the seasons. More fruit and carbs in the long days of summer and less during the shorter winter days.
Jun 11, 2010 — 4:55 am
Regarding the headaches, you might want to check your nasal passages. I had a procedure done in December as my right one was 30% too small and it decreases airflow.
Jun 11, 2010 — 11:24 am
You are the 2nd person I know that had the procedure done. It is now on my radar. ideally I’d like not to go the surgery route, but if I must I will.
Jun 13, 2010 — 8:02 pm
Surgery to improve a 30% reduction in airflow in one nostril??? That makes no sense. Any surgery has severe downside risks.
My non medical opinion is that Mother Nature built in two nostrils for good redundancy reasons not just to look symetrical. Just like two lungs, two kidneys, two testicles etc. You can live just fine with only one of them. If you weren’t getting enough air through the nose, your body would simply start breathing in more through your mouth.
Before I had surgery I would run a simple test: Stuff up one nostril with tissue paper for a month and note the times you have a headache compared with a month without the stuffed nostril.
Jun 13, 2010 — 9:18 pm
Here is an article on mouth vs nose breathing. My father and uncle have sleep apnea and are both overwieght. It was a 20 min procedure (yes under general anestesia) but I do feel the benefits make the operation worth it.
Jun 14, 2010 — 8:39 am
Many of my sinus headaches come about without getting stuffed up, so I may not have the same issue. I do have another lead, which I’ll post on later if it turns out to be helpful.
Jun 14, 2010 — 7:42 pm
Sleep apnea is a whole different problem involving the actual cessation of breathing while sleeping. Very related to over- weight. I don’t think this is MAS ‘s problem.