10 days, no sugar: the plan

by Kim on November 6, 2014

Woohoo! The winner of the Skoop protein powder giveaway is posted! Is it you??

Oh man. It’s coming up, people. In 4 days, I’m going 100% sugar free for the following 10.

(Is that pathetic that it feels like such a monumental thing?)

Since I’m an organizational freak, I have to pre-plan everything in my life to have any prayer of being successful. And so, I’m going into this challenge with guns fully loaded.

Read on for all the dirty details, strategies, and meal planning ideas, plus the SECRET WEAPON that’s going to get me through this thing!

10 days no sugar

***If you want to JOIN ME (please please please!), I set up a little Facebook group that I’ll be running just for the 10-day duration of the challenge (next Monday, Nov. 10, through the following Wednesday, Nov. 19). I’ll be on there daily to check in, share whatever motivational treasures I can find online (haha), and hopefully connect with a few of you for some much-needed support!

You can follow along even if you’re doing your own version of a sugar challenge—something like “just one sweet a day.” So go join now!

The rules

–No sweeteners of any kind, natural or otherwise (including honey, maple syrup, agave, stevia, and artificial sweeteners).

–No liquid sweets (juice, soda, energy drinks, wine, beer, shakes involving protein powder with sugar in it).

–No sugary sauces/dressings (ketchup, BBQ sauce), no packaged foods with added sugar, etc.

The one exception to this challenge is FRUIT. It technically contains fructose, of course, and some no-sugar challenges are so hard core that they cut it out, but I’m not going there (partially because I was originally inspired by the Fed Up 10-day challenge, which allows fruit).

Dairy is another grey area—it technically contains lactose (sugarrrr), but I’m not cutting it because dairy is also a great source of protein and fat, and I don’t have much of it in my diet anyway. The most I’ll probably do is butter on my veggies (because it’s one thing to eat veggies, and a totally different thing to eat VEGGIES WITH BUTTER) and some cheese.

Remember that sugar has a bunch of secret spy names that show up on labels, like dextrin/dextrose, high fructose corn syrup, maltodextrin, maltose, saccharose, sucrose, and xylose. Watch out for those bad boys. Sugar alcohols like maltitol and sorbitol are also no-no’s.

Of course, you can totally bypass any of that tricky label reading business by just getting simple, whole foods—things that don’t even have labels (meat, veggies, healthy fats like olive oil, fruit).

If this all sounds super depressing, just remember all the foods that are still YES foods, like: Cheese! Steak! Cocoa! Berries! (Sugar free) nut butter! BACON!

The strategy

Is it weird that I need a strategy to not eat sugar? I can’t just not eat it? Haha…

So I was trying to think of things that might sabotage me, by making me crave sugar even more than I normally would. I think my biggest threats are:

Coffee. Coffee messes with blood sugar and causes sugar cravings. I’m not interested in going cold turkey on it, but I’ll definitely be limiting myself to one small cup a day.

Stress. I’m the queen of overcommitting and under-relaxing. I’m going to keep an extra close eye on this during the challenge, because stress is also a well-know sugar craving spiker.

When I feel it coming on (which it will), the plan is: deep breathing. Someone recently taught me the 4-7-8 “Relaxing Breath” exercise (4 counts in, hold for 7 counts, 8 counts out – repeat x 4).

Poor sleep. With a 2-month-old, I don’t have TOTAL control of this. But what I can control is the time I go to bed—I have a bad habit of being a naughty night owl. Not next week!

The secret weapon

Ok, here’s the REAL way I’m going to get through this. Are you ready?

I’m going to keep eating dessert.

Oh yeah.

Remember that chocolate, in its original pure form (cocoa), is sugar free. And I’ve been wanting to try Chocolate Covered Katie’s sugar free fudge for a long time now:

choco fudge

I’m also eyeing up these Bitter Bounty Chocolates:

bitter chocolates

Or how about some Butter Pecan Apples? Chunky Monkey Ice Cream? Paleo Macaroons?

I know they’re not going to taste as sweet as what I might be used to, but that’s one of the big benefits of the challenge—training my taste buds to recognize less sweet things as sweet enough.

And, really, treats are mostly just a ritual to me anyway. It’s not that I’m craving sugar, it’s that I want something sweet, and I can do that without sugar.

Now, don’t worry, I’m not trying to game the system here. I’m not going to go to town on these sugar free treats, either. Part of the idea here is to break that mindset that I “need” something sweet after meals at all. But if I can learn to satisfy myself on a little sugarless treat here and there, I think that’s a pretty big win.

Meal ideas

The 21 Day Sugar Detox Pinterest board is a gold mine.

Here are just a few of the gems I found there and around the interwebs:


Vanilla pancakes

Egg muffins

egg muffins

Sausage patties

Mini bacon egg cups (LOVE this idea!)

Carrot pumpkin muffins


In reality, this will mostly be leftovers from dinner, but I also found a bunch of other good options…

Mini cauliflower pizzas

Chicken zucchini poppers


Spicy cabbage salad

Spicy avocado egg salad

Turkey bacon club salad


Mustard balsamic baked chicken

Ground beef stir fry with cabbage

Zucchini lasagna


Slow cooker lemon garlic chicken

Beef and broccoli

Creamy chicken soup with cauliflower dumplings

The taper

Here’s my final strategy: instead of going into this weekend with the “LAST CHANCE” mindset, I’m going to try and taper my sugar intake so it’s not such a jolt on Monday. Our house is already pretty de-sugarfied right now, so all I have to do is make sure to not introduce anything new between then and now.

Except that sugar free fudge. That’s happening.


SO. Who’s with me? (Doesn’t it sound easier than you thought??)

Here’s that Facebook group again. <—Please don’t make me post stuff to myself for 10 days!!

(And to my husband, who was forced to join because Facebook made me pick at least one other person to start the group, haha.)

Have you ever done a sugar detox? If so, tips??

Have you done another kind of detox? How did it go?




{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Giselle November 7, 2014 at 9:52 am

Okay I think I’m in! The hard part is usually that I have outings and events planned every weekend but for the next 10 days don’t have much so that should work! Joining the Facebook group now.
Thanks for the share too! Hope you enjoy those muffins :-)


Heather @Fit n Cookies November 7, 2014 at 7:51 am

Ok so I totally want to do t his, but I’m really picky, meaning I can’t give up everything with sugar. I think I’m going to do my own detox of sorts and just cut out things I know that are loaded with sugar (uhm, cookies. candy. etc.) I need to remember to join your facebook group.. currently I’m at school and it’s blocked ;)
Heather @Fit n Cookies recently posted…Coffee, Tea, Hot Chocolate talk!My Profile


Kim November 7, 2014 at 9:07 am

I think that’s a great idea! Let me know if you have any trouble joining the group! (I seem to be kind of FB illiterate and have already run into some snags, haha.)


Ashley Pitt @ A Lady Goes West November 6, 2014 at 11:13 pm

Wow! You are prepared! Good luck to you. I’m not joining in, but fully support you and am eager to hear what you think about this experience. Go get ’em!
Ashley Pitt @ A Lady Goes West recently posted…A real weekly grocery shopping listMy Profile


Kim November 7, 2014 at 9:08 am

Thanks Ashley! :)


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