What to expect
You made it over the hump! Welcome to Day 6.
You may be amazed at the fact you have gone five whole days without a soda, diet soda, piece of cake or candy bar. Congratulations! Hopefully some of your sugar cravings are slowly starting to shrink or even disappear. As you make healthier food choices and eat more real whole foods and cut added sugar and heavily processed foods, your palate changes! You might have noticed your taste buds are already adjusting to your new food and beverage choices. Fruit should start to taste much sweeter than it has before and seem like a treat or dessert.
Speaking of fruit, have you tried fruit-infused water? It’s an easy and healthy way to add some flavor to your water and help increase your daily water consumption. Choose from a variety of herbs, spices, fruits and vegetables to add some flavor to your water!
A few options to choose from include:
- Herbs: Mint, basil, parsley, thyme, rosemary
- Spices: Cinnamon sticks, vanilla bean, fresh ginger
- Fruits: Fresh or frozen berries, pineapple, melon, lemons, limes, oranges, apples, pears
- Vegetables: Cucumber, carrots, celery
You can have your fruits and vegetables peeled or unpeeled. Add your mixture to a half gallon or gallon of water. It is best to let the water sit in the refrigerator for a few hours or overnight to allow the flavors to infuse. The longer it sits, the more flavorful it will be.
Here are some great combinations to try!
- Pineapple + mint
- Cherry + lime
- Blueberries + lemon + mint
- Pineapple + cucumber + mint
- Ginger + lime
- Strawberry + lemon
- Sliced apples + cinnamon sticks
- Fresh basil + sliced melon
- Kiwi + blackberry
There is a lot of hidden sugar in the beverages we drink. Check out this video that tells you more!
What to eat
Here is a suggested meal plan for Day 6 of the Sugar Shutdown. Please note you can make changes to fit your tastes, dietary and calorie needs.
As always, our important reminders:
- Do not skip any meals. Eat breakfast, lunch and dinner.
- Listen to your hunger cues. Eat until you’re satisfied, but give yourself a break before you start to snack to see if you’re actually hungry. (If you’re hungry enough to eat an apple, you’re probably hungry.)
- Remember to stay hydrated and drink plenty of water.
- Eat snacks that have both a protein and a carbohydrate (nuts and fruit, hummus and vegetables, string cheese and grapes). This will keep your blood sugar stable throughout the day and help you stay full and keep cravings at bay.
- If you mix and match any meals, remember you want: A maximum of 2-3 servings of fruit daily. Watch your serving sizes and your snacks! 4-6 servings of nonstarchy vegetables. Half of your plate at lunch and dinner should be nonstarchy vegetables. If you can get them in at breakfast too, all the better. Snack time is an easy spot to get another serving in as well!
We encourage using leftovers, especially at lunchtime!
2 slices 100 percent whole-wheat toast
Sautéed peppers and onions and spinach
Optional: ¼ cup shredded cheese
Raw veggies and hummus
- Small bag of prewashed kale or ½ bunch of kale leaves washed and dried
- 1 ½ teaspoons olive oil
- Salt or seasoning salt (Can use garlic salt)
Heat oven to 300 degrees. Line baking sheet with parchment paper or spray. Remove stems from kale and cut into large pieces if not already cut. Place kale in bowl and add olive oil. Massage olive oil into kale leaves until they are covered. Add salt of choice. Spread evenly on baking sheet. Bake for approximately 25 minutes until they are brown on the edges but not burnt, turning the pan halfway through. Enjoy!
Mixed greens salad with lots of vegetables (carrots, cucumber, tomatoes, celery, broccoli, etc.), topped with Greek yogurt chicken salad
- 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, poached
- ¼ cup plain Greek yogurt
- 1/3 cup diced celery
- 1/3 cup diced apple
- 1/3 cup halved grapes
- ¼ cup slivered almonds
Optional: Sprinkle a ranch seasoning packet in Greek yogurt to give the chicken salad a ranch flavor.
Dice poached chicken breasts. In large bowl, mix yogurt to coat chicken. Add ranch seasoning if desired. Add celery, apples, grapes and almonds.
The creamy chicken salad on top of the mixed greens eliminates the need for added dressing!
An apple and almonds or mixed nuts
- Whole-wheat tortilla wrap
- 3-4 ounces of any white fish (salmon, tilapia, mahimahi, cod, etc.) baked and seasoned
- Fresh toppings of your choosing (avocado, lettuce, tomato, cheese, cilantro, black beans, etc.)
Side: Roasted Brussels sprouts
- 1 1/2 pounds Brussels sprouts
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Heat oven to 400 degrees. Cut Brussels sprouts in half. Place them in a bowl with the olive oil, salt and pepper, stir to coat. Pour them on a pan and roast for 35 to 40 minutes, until crisp on the outside and tender on the inside. Shake the pan from time to time to brown the sprouts evenly. Sprinkle with additional salt to taste and serve immediately.
How you should be feeling today
Since you made it over the hump, today just might be one of your best days yet. Your body is probably now getting used to life without added sugars and is starting to adjust to it. This day might be where you realize just how much sugar you consumed before and how strong your cravings must have been. You also might still be in shock that you have gone five whole days without them! Remember when you thought you couldn’t even make it a few hours without chocolate or sweets? Keep up the great work. You are getting closer and closer each day.
Deskercise! Fit exercise into your workday at your desk. Set an alarm on your computer or phone to remind you to do your exercises daily. Or when you are feeling restless and your mind starts thinking about snacks, try to deskercise instead! Here are a few ideas:
The desk chair swivel: Take advantage of having a swivel chair by working out your obliques! Sit upright with your feet hovering the floor but not touching, hold the edge of your desk with your fingers and thumb. Use your core to swivel the chair from side to side. Turn back and forth for 12 rounds and repeat.
Tricep dip: Place your hands at the edge of your desk next to your hips. Move your hips away from the desk and slowly lower your body until your arms are at a 90 degree angle. Raise your body up and repeat.
Chair squat: Sit with your abs engaged and back straight. Using your legs, lift yourself about 6 inches off your chair. Hold this position for 30 seconds and then rest. Repeat. Try to hold yourself for longer amounts of time each day.
Getting inadequate sleep is likely to make you hungry, because it causes a drop in leptin, an appetite-regulating hormone.
Source: The Cleveland Clinic