Few things in life awaken in me as much happiness and love as dessert. It’s true that free trials on Netflix and winning an argument with my brother come close but, to be real, they don’t even begin to budge Dessert off the throne that I’ve made for him.
All this is why, a month ago, I was eating store-bought, whole wheat bread for dessert.
This is the kind of bread with crusts like leather. The bread whose dry interior is bland and whose crust is worse. The kind of bread which has fifty ingredients in it, according to the label, but you only taste one and it doesn’t taste good.
All right, you say, we have eaten bread before.
Sure you have, I cynically mutter. But you ate it smothered in that liquid fat given the nice name “butter” or maybe dripping with butter’s partner in crime, mayonnaise. Now imagine that piece of bread stares up at you with no white silky mask on and all his ugliness exposed. Eat that and you will have eaten bread. Confront and overcome your disgust at the leathery skin of your new friend and you will be ready for the sugar detox diet. Was I ready?
I wasn’t ready for the reality of deprivation:
-No honey? But I thought it was good for-
-nothing! it is a food of the devil, burning in the same ring of hell as that greatest of all evils, sugar.
-Well, goodbye, sticky friend. Goodbye also to muffins, my personal favorite of all created goods.
Of course some would have me give up fruit also but here is where I drew the line. I was testing my resolve, not my survival, and life without sweetness at all threw the latter into jeopardy. “We don’t want anyone dying here, ” I said as I walked out of the store with the entire produce aisle.
No, to go a month,-a few hours,- with no sugar is a feat worthy only of the strongest and most hardy. Survival of the Fittest plays out in a tragic and dramatic way: the weakest of the species soon give in to the idea that “some ” sugar is ok and they often reach this conclusion around dessert time . They soon go extinct and are no longer numbered amongst us.
One by one, they fall. Some we lose violently (while eating ice cream out of the container) and some just slink away . I can’t say I didn’t make exceptions: one exception was Sugar-filled Sunday where I consumed so much of that white goodness a scan of my body would have shown me to be a pixie stick. (without the stick)
But dessert! you say.
Yes. So, what to do for dessert when you cannot have anything sweet? When even cereal and flavored yogurt are off-limits ? When-
Enough, you say. Just skip dessert.
(This is where I begin to understand how there is so much evil in the world and how ignorance lives in so many hearts. It is because there still exist among us a few people who carelessly suggest one may skip dessert . Skip the soul of my day!?)
But I regress. And perhaps exaggerate.
All the same, reread the first paragraph and you will return better enlightened as to a woman’s feelings towards dessert. Enlightened as to why I felt a need to eat something- anything- a little after dinner. I felt a need to eat bread.
To be honest, I have also enjoyed green smoothies and plain oatmeal for dessert during this trying time, but there is nothing like chewing on a piece of bread with your after-dinner tea or coffee. It awakens in you a sort of survival instinct that the luxury of sugar suppresses.
Perhaps you noticed I am writing again in the present tense. This is because I still eat bread for dessert; I still am on a “sugar detox”. I could have finished after a month but I have no finish line in mind.
Because of a factor I have not spoken about at all. Deprivation. Saying “no, I don’t think we are going to order the frappe even though we could.” or “that chocolate ice cream looks good but, man ,it’s no match for my piece of bread.”
And why in the name of how good muffins are would you tell yourself you can’t have something?
Because anyone can say yes to a bowl of ice cream. It’s harder to say no. Because only the heroes realize they want something better.
Only heroes eat bread.
Don’t forget to comment your dieting experiences!