Week 1: No sugar.

For convenience, I’ll just put this as one week, even though I’m starting on a Wednesday.

I’ve discovered most seasonings and spreads have sugar–soy sauce, peanut butter, chilli garlic sauce I’m looking at you. This also means my daily breakfast of whole meal bread and peanut butter should be banned (although it also comes under the “don’t ask your in-laws too many questions” rule) so I’m going to make a smoothie for breakfast from now on, which also saves me from worrying about my six cups of veggies that I see a lot of websites recommend.

My husband asked, “does this mean you can’t eat ice cream and Magnum?” Yes, yes it does. He ate one right in front of me…and I went to the gym instead. Battling the sugar cravings isn’t super difficult, but trying to find no sugar alternatives is much harder. So I’ve stopped snacking for the past few days. If I want something flavoured, I drink black tea with no sugar.

Here’s what I’ve been eating:

Breakfast: whole meal bread with peanut butter and butter

Lunch: vegetarian mixed rice (broccoli, Bok Choy, potato wedges–I couldn’t resist–a fried egg on brown rice), chicken macaroni soup with vegetables (I wanted to add more vegetables, which usually doesn’t cost more than a dollar but yesterday the guy said it cost $2 for three stalks so I refused and got very angry), and a salad today. The salad has romaine, almonds, roasted chicken, mango, carrots and the dressing is lemon with olive oil.

Dinner: home cooked food with white rice, spinach, soup, teriyaki-glazed cod (yes I know there’s sugar in teriyaki sauce but See rule about in-laws), and egg, steamed fish, minced pork and fishball soup (had this on Wednesday and the meals are almost always a variant on this) and teppanyaki on Thursday. That consisted of chicken, broccoli and white rice, miso soup and two slices of oranges. Had my usual chicken thigh with black pepper sauce (I ate half the sauce), fries and salad for dinner, after which my husband ate another Magnum in front of me.

Snack: brown rice tutu kueh with coconut and peanut.

Still haven’t had time to cook or shop so I’ll do that tonight and then cook tomorrow hopefully.

Saturday, 3 March

Meal prepped after a breakfast of scrambled eggs, thus avoiding any sugar in the noodle soup which we usually buy back. Made pineapple fried rice with a boatload of mixed veg and brown rice, chicken, mushrooms and pineapple. Plus the sauce. It smells decent enough. I also made an important substitution… liquid aminos rather than soy sauce so the only sugar content comes from the vegetables and the brown rice (which seems to be negligible-ish).

Came home from exercising (week 4 pwr 1.0 from the sweat app) and I was hungry enough to momentarily consider eating the sugar-laden Chinese New Year treats, which much like Christmas treats in the West I assume, linger around far longer than the actual occasion. (Chinese New Year typically lasts for 15 days, although the official holidays in Singapore are just the first two days–my parents have been seen to be still eating the cookies in May).

Instead I spied a plate of leftover pineapple and olive fried rice and ate that instead. It’s likely that there is sugar in that, obviously. Maybe my sugar ban should be more of no treats and desserts…

An unfortunate side effect is I seem to be perpetually thirsty, maybe because I’m consuming more food high in salt (not on purpose either, but it sometimes happens like this). I’m also highly aware that all the snacks around me mainly contain sugar so I’m abstaining as much as I can.

I watched as my husband downed a small popcorn chicken and potato bites from KFC and washed it down with Pepsi, all the while declaring I was annoying…what he meant of course was that the sugar ban I’d put myself on was annoying (although yes I can be annoying on a personal level). I took one small popcorn chicken just to appease him.

We had sushi for an early dinner, since I was getting slightly lightheaded. I’d downed a (plastic cup, sealed with plastic) cup of orange juice, freshly squeezed (I could taste the pulp and it wasn’t overly sweet to me) but I was still lightheaded.

Having discovered that they make sushi rice with sugar and vinegar, I had lots of salmon sashimi, two plates of tamago (egg roll), one of crab, soba noodles in a sweet sauce that I didn’t take any of, chawanmushi (which wasn’t very solidified), slices of awabi (abalone which was also sweet) and smoked duck just to make sure I had enough food and wasn’t going to faint.

Sunday, 4 March

Prepped a mason jar of overnight oats (I had this in the pantry already) to avoid any sugars in the noodles. Filled it up with milk, strawberries and apples to give it some sweetness that I’m sorta craving.

Had a (planned out in advance in my head) lunch at Nando’s, ordering a quarter chicken plain…ish and a side salad. Husband noticed I was still hungry so he thoughtfully left a piece of chicken (in mild peri sauce) for me. I checked their bottles too…the sugar content actually isn’t that high, surprisingly. I also ate a couple of wedges from his plate.

Had a slice of pear since I really wanted something sweet. It’s like a drug I guess, I just need the taste of something sweet. So I’ve been eating fruits, which helps.

Went back to my parents’ place for dinner. They had an “American” breakfast for dinner. I avoided the bacon and sausage, took some vegetables (carrots, broccoli, asparagus and cherry tomatoes) as well as two chicken pieces, when everyone else had one or none. Also had two eggs, all because I was afraid of being super hungry. Had a few slices of peach for dinner. Also avoided the orange juice we usually drink.

I’ve been moody the last two days, possibly because of PMS… or the lack of sugar who knows. Anyway, week 2 starts tomorrow!

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