7 years ago
This article was written by a member of the SheKnows Community. It has not been edited, vetted or reviewed by our editorial staff, and any opinions expressed herein are the writer’s own.

Have we got a deal for you! Yes, we're challenging you to two weeks of no added sugar...of any kind.  But we're giving all the tools you'll need to graduate with honors.  Here's what we've created to be certain that your challenge is successful:

1) Complete menus with recipe links.
2) Green nutrient rich, yummy smoothie recipes for everyday of the challenge.
3) A total body home workout by yours truly with videos that demonstrate every move.
4) Support, motivation, encouragement and so much more.

Read on to get the all the juicy details with links that lead directly to your success tools!

It all started on March 10th, myself along with Tiffany of The Gracious Pantry challenged ourselves and each other to stop eating all sugar for two weeks...all added sugar that is. We didn't want to keep this challenge all to ourselves so we invited everyone to join in.  We had so much success with the first challenge that we soon decided on a second.  From April 25th – May 9th we will begin our 3rdNo Sugar Challenge.  We are again inviting everyone to join in by embarking on, what might very well be, a life changing  journey. 

No idea what to eat over the next two weeks?  Don’t worry, we have created meal plans that will give you recipes and ideas that will ensure your two weeks will be a big success.  Our plans include small meals for every day of the week, and many have links to delicious and healthy recipes.  You will get support, motivation and hopefully a lot of inspiration along the way.

Here's my 7 day meal plan.  All recipes are underlined and attached to a link. 
Check out Tiffany of The Gracious Pantry's meal plans.  And, if you're thinking about
joining us for the challenge but aren't quite convinced, you'll want to read
The Gracious Pantry's Blog as well.

How about a nutrient rich green smoothie for everyday of the challenge?  Tiffany and I created 14 Green, no-sugar added, Yummy smoothies. How can you possibly go wrong?  You can't!!!  We decided to make life a whole lot easier over the next two weeks by giving you menus, a total body workout, green smoothies and loads of support & encouragement.  Check out our recipes below:

Green Smoothies for the No-Sugar-Challenge on my Fit Fabulous Forever site.
Green Smoothies for the No-Sugar-Challenge on Tiffany's, The Gracious Pantry site.

For loads of support, encouragement and motivation you might just want to like us:
Facebook me by jumping here.
Facebook Tiffany by jumping here.  

BONUS:  As a certified fitness instructor, I thought it was important to have the whole package.  Since you will be eliminating added sugar, why not begin a workout program as well? I have created a total body workout to get you started toward being in the best condition of your life.  On April 25th, you will find the workout on My Blogs page under the title, “Beach Body by Summer…with this gradual plan (part 4).”   Not only am I giving you a total workout, I've also made videos of everyday of the week to demonstrate each move so there is no guess work.

Here's the guidelines for the No Sugar Challenge:

Fruit– One to two pieces of fruit per day are allowed. A small handful of unsweetened berries can be substituted for a piece of fruit. Although fruit has natural sugar it also has tons of nutritional value and is most definitely good for our health.

Processed Foods – We will be eliminating all added sugar whether it's by itself or hidden among the other unhealthy ingredients in processed foods.  Label reading is essential to have a successful two weeks without added sugar.  Below you will find a comprehensive list of sugar by all sorts of might be surprised.

Eliminate all added Sugar - The important thing to keep in mind is that all sugar --to include agave nectar, raw honey, sorghum, sucanat, cane syrup, molasses, maple syrup, etc.-- can pack on the pounds. If a product advertises as having NO HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP...then most definitely flip the package over and read the ingredient's label.  Chances are good that it contains sugar in one form or another.  This is an opportunity to cleanse your body of all added sugar while having support and motivation from me, Tiffany and countless others who are on board with the challenge.

Here's a list of what Sugar can potentially do to the body

Obesity - It’s difficult to know when to stop eating sugar. Put simply excess sugar is converted by the liver into FAT and returned to the bloodstream where it is stored in our bodies on areas like thighs, stomach, hips, etc. The dreaded cellulite is another downside of sugar.
Premature Aging - Too much sugar causes our body cells to lose elasticity--resulting in premature aging of our skin, most noticeably in the form of wrinkles, which shows up earlier than they might have otherwise, even without overexposure to the sun. This same concept holds true for our internal organs, they too wear out more quickly becoming more susceptible to disease and age related illnesses.
Weakened Immunity - Excess sugar raises the insulin level which inhibits the release of growth 
 hormones, resulting in a weakened immune system. Heart disease, diabetes and cancer are just a few diseases that are indirectly, or some would argue directly, related to the over consumption sugar word.
Sugar addicts often tend to be more susceptible to viruses, headaches and other unbalanced immune responses.
Stress – Sugar in excess causes the glucose levels in our blood to skyrocket--attributing to our bodies trying to compensate by releasing stress hormones called adrenaline. The result is stress, which we all know weakens the immune system. 
Refined sugar has absolutely no nutritional value and its chemical bonds are broken down due to the amount of processing. Whereas the natural sugar found in fruits still has its bonds intact. When eating a piece of fruit it releases a less amount of sugar overtime which gives us a boost of energy that last for hours. Fruit provides an abundance of nutritional value--which refined sugar cannot lay claim.  This is why the rules of our challenge include 1-2 pieces of fruit per day.
The average American eats up to three pounds of refined sugar per week-- most of that being in processed foods --hidden under an assumed name.  Here are some of the disguises sugar hides behind:
Brown Sugar, Sugar Honey, Sucrose, Corn Syrup, Molasses, Confectioner’s Sugar, Powdered Sugar,  Date Sugar, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Brown Rice Syrup, Maltodextrin, Molasses Powder, Turbinado, Maple syrup, Glucose, Dextrin, Lactose, Fructose, Caramel, Fruit sugar, Maple Sugar, Dextrose, Chicory syrup, Barley Malt, Beet Sugar, Cane Juice, Carob Sugar, Castor Sugar, Demerara Sugar, Galactose, Invert Sugar, Malt Syrup...

So, from April 25th – May 9th we our joining together to eliminate all added sugar from our diets. The nice thing about making this a community effort is that we are there for each other, to motivate and just maybe talk each other through one or more of those nasty late night sugar cravings.  Let's support each other and make this happen!

Gale Compton
Fit Fabulous Forever



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