Welcome to the first day of the 4th annual Sugar challenge!

If you missed last week's prep email regarding food labels, all emails are saved HERE. You can also review and print all the Challenge Rules

What to expect: As with any dietary change, sticking to it is key. If your goal for this challenge is to reduce sugar from your diet long term, being able to get through the first few difficult weeks of this challenge is crucial. Sugar in itself isn’t “bad”, but it should be eaten in moderation alongside a healthy diet. The first two weeks of the challenge are the most difficult because you are training your body to restrain from added sugar that used to be a part of your diet and may have even become an addiction. Don’t be alarmed if over the next few weeks, you don’t feel like yourself. You may start experiencing “sugar withdrawal” symptoms that often include brain fog, anxiety, headaches, fatigue and even depression. It’s pretty amazing the effects sugar has on our bodies.
What to eat: During this challenge, no food is off limit other than sweeteners of course. Remember, sweeteners include the artificial and the natural kind, like honey and maple syrup. Try to eat foods from the five food groups: proteins, dairy, fruits, veggies and whole grains. This will help keep your body sustained with the nutrients it needs to function properly. Don’t forget to eat! Make sure you're eating real food regularly throughout the day. Drink extra water to help curb your cravings. 

Snack Ideas: 
Lunch meat (look for added sugar) 
Fresh squeezed juice 
Plain yogurt with fruit  

Common foods with added sugars to avoid: Bread, packaged protein bars, granola, yogurt, gum, dressings, beef jerky, dried fruits, fruit juice, cereals, common lunch meats, most meals at restaurants, and most pre-packaged foods.  

Don’t worry, you can find quality food with good ingredients if you look for it! As a word of encouragement, if you happen to get off track one day and eat some added sugar, you can still jump back into it the next day and try again. This doesn’t have to be perfect, just give it your best! 

St. Peter’s Wellness Team 

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