Oh Sweet Heart of Mine

by Diane Sweeney on February 4, 2014

archiesSugar, ah, honey, honey
You are my candy girl
And you got me wanting you….

Remember that Archies song? (I am really, really dating myself!)

 

Those of us who grew up in the 60’s and 70’s had that song emblazoned on our mind. It played EVERYWHERE. And I think it taught us all to just want, want, want anything sweet!

 

Can we blame our obsession with sugar on Archie, Veronica, Betty, Reggie and Jughead? 

Unfortunately, no. 

Decades of enjoying refined sugars has resulted in many forms of dis-ease in our bodies, primarily because it is not a natural substance that belongs in our bodies in great quantities. 

Most times we don’t even know we are eating as much as we do. 

Many of us are consuming 500 extra calories a day in sugar alone. Do the math – 500 x 7 days in a week – that’s an extra pound we add or keep on in sugar alone! 

We can talk about sugar adding weight, belly fat, its link to cancer and liver disease, its lack of nutritional value in our bodies, but most importantly, sugar can damage your heart. 

And our hearts are what keep us alive. 

Every moment. 

Every Day. 

A 2013 study in the Journal of the American Heart Association showed that sugar can actually affect the pumping mechanism of your heart and could increase the risk for heart failure. Approximately half of the people diagnosed with heart failure die within 5 years. 

Since February is Love month – and the month of chocolates and sweets, I encourage you to take this information to heart! 

After a hormonal hell mid-January, coupled with the extra pounds from the holidays, I felt just awful. My hair and skin looked terrible; I was sluggish and beginning to slip into the un-motivated pattern I like to slip into; and I didn’t like where it was all heading. 

Instead of doing the grand master sweep of changing everything as I’ve been known to do in the past (you know the pattern… soon getting overwhelmed and changing nothing), I decided to change just one thing. Well, maybe two. 

Sugars are hidden in so many of our foods, so it’s hard to say get rid of it all, all at once. But you can make a decision to make a simple change to start the process. 

Mine was no cookies, candies or sweet treats all week long. And limiting myself to just a taste of ‘something’ if we were out on the weekend. 

I did it! Two weeks of just the one change and I’ve lost 4 pounds, my hair is shinier, my skin is brighter and I’m writing, creating and working at this computer 8-10 hours a day. My cravings are gone and I’m doing the happy dance! 

Most importantly, I know I am doing good for my heartheart 1

So that I can share it with my husband, my boys, my family, friends and you, my faithful readers! 

 

So please, if you know there is too much refined sugar in your diet, as a favor to all those you want to say I LOVE YOU to on February 14, and as a gift to yourself, make a simple change to decrease the sugar in your diet. Just one thing… 

Stop drinking the soda.

Read the labels of processed foods.

Consider a ‘treat’ a piece of fresh fruit vs. a cookie.

Savor the one piece of chocolate to enjoy it for the treat it is. 

Study charts like this one from Women’s Health magazine to understand where sugar is hidden in what you eat.

sugar2 

 

Your beautiful heart is too important to destroy with something that you can eliminate from your diet.

 

Get Focused on Living and take care of your heart!

 

To your best,

Diane

 

 IMG_5409_ds

 

 

 

 

Previous post:

Next post: