A Year and a Half Sugar Free:Life is More Simple!

I had tried to quit refined sugar numerous times over the course of several years, but I finally stopped for good after being diagnosed with SIBO (Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth).  In order to rid my small intestine of the bacteria that weren’t supposed to make a home there, I had to go on a very strict diet to starve them.  There are a lot of things on the no list, the biggest one being sugar.  Because I had quit sugar before, I knew what to expect for two months because that’s the longest I had ever been off it.  I knew that my menstrual cramps would go away, and I knew that I would lose some weight, and I knew that some of my anxiety would fade, but as two months became three and then four, I started to notice something extraordinary that I did not expect!!!  For the first time in over ten years, my chronic back pain went away.  I thought maybe the pain went away because of the lack of bacteria which have been known to cause back pain, but I had a recurrence of SIBO over the summer and didn’t experience pain at all.

It’s hard to write about the experience of being pain free without wanting to cry.  I was looking at journal entries I had written when the pain was so horrible and I can’t believe that that was my reality for ten years.  For an experiential anatomy class I drew this picture of how I experienced my body at the moment:


Touching my toes hurt, I had to brace myself when I sneezed, I tensed up when people hugged me sometimes because I was afraid of them causing me pain by accident.  I felt so restricted in my body.  I always blamed my scoliosis and when I got x-rays I blamed my herniated disc.  I took pain meds that made me feel spacey and yoga made me cry because a good day would be followed by a bad day where I couldn’t even do a sit up.  Now, a year and half later, all that is behind me.  It has taken me long time to trust my body again and play without inhibition and fear.  My body healed long ago, but my spirit took a little longer.  A big piece of my identity was wrapped up in being a person who experienced chronic pain, so now I am in the process of experiencing my new identity.  I am 31, but I feel younger than I did at 20!!!

Being pain free makes me realize how complicated life was when I ate sugar and was in pain.  It’s amazing how much mental effort, money and time go into avoiding pain and it’s amazing how much mental effort, money and time it takes to maintain a sugar addiction!  Going sugar free may seem complicated at first, but it is actually the best decision I have ever made that has made my life more simple.  I have saved money, I’ve learned to cook, I play more, I don’t have to worry about my weight, I eat less and less often because my blood sugar is under control, and I don’t have to go to the doctor for pain!  If you are considering going sugar free, contact me because I would love to help and share what I know and offer support.


Author: Action is Eloquence

I live in Grants Pass, Oregon with my wonderful husband and am in the process of re-imagining a new life for myself! I just moved from Portland where I spent the last 11 years on a metaphorical runway and now am ready to take off. College, a marriage, several customer service jobs, death, fear and shyness were all teachers, but it's time for me to take what I learned and use my talents to make a better life for myself and give back to the community. I have a passion for helping people remember their relationship with nature. I went to Portland State University where I earned my Masters in Educational Leadership and Policy with a specialization in Sustainability Education. I enjoy blogging because it is a way for me to help others regain this relationship and learn how to care for the Earth by living more simply and mindfully. Traditional cooking, natural building, living simply, permaculture and ecopsychology are my favorite subjects and I have a new obsession with eating bugs as a way to help live a more sustainable life. I only appear quiet and reserved until someone gets me going any of these topics!

4 thoughts on “A Year and a Half Sugar Free:Life is More Simple!”

    1. Hi Joleen! After quitting many times, the biggest thing that worked for me this last time was going cold turkey and quitting grains at the same time. I had hypoglycemia and when I just quit sugar, I would binge on bread so stopping both at the same time let my body re balance itself and without sugar and grain I ate WAY more veggies and good fat to get the energy I needed. I still eat honey and some fruit. I heard somewhere that the body can handle something like 5 tablespoons of sugar a day so I try to keep that in mind. So I put honey in my coffee and eat a banana a day and some berries and that’s about it. I stay away from all other forms of sugar such as agave, and I especially stay away from alcohol which is the WORST kind of thing to do to my blood sugar levels.

      I also watched Fed Up and read a lot about what sugar does to the body, the healthcare system, the environment, and our communities. Feeling like a revolutionary helped me during the worst withdraw symptoms and still keeps me going:)

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Hi there,
    Thanks so much for stopping by my blog, which enables me to visit yours in return.
    I do agree with your approach in this post and feel the same way. Here I put a link for a book I am currently reading about a French journalist who experienced one year without sugar. The book is called Zero Sugar but is only in French for now unfortunately : https://translate.google.com/translate?sl=fr&tl=en&js=y&prev=_t&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&u=http%3A%2F%2Fsante.lefigaro.fr%2Factualite%2F2015%2F04%2F03%2F23584-an-sans-sucre-ma-sante-sest-clairement-amelioree&edit-text=&act=url

    ( i put the English google translated link)




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