Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Chocolate and stress....

Ok...most of you know that I gave up sugar years ago. And I eventually got to the point where I didn't even want it anymore (I know that sounds bizarre, but it's true). About 7 or 8 months ago (I lose track of time easily) I started a new job and a new phase of life. Although it's been good for me professionally and even personally - it has NOT been good for me in terms of sugar intake. Tonight I am baking my Thanksgiving pies (2 pumpkin, 1 chocolate pecan, and 1 raspberry cream) and I have succumbed to the lure of the semi-sweet chocolate morsels.(Mmm...isn't the word "morsel" delicious? I bet I gained 2 pounds just thinking of that word...)

Now - one night off of the bandwagon wouldn't be the end of the world, but I hereby confess to my blog-o-sphere that I have fallen off the wagon OFTEN in the last few months. I assume that it's related to stress and, to be perfectly honest, it generally happens after I've had a drink or two and my inhibitions are down.

So here's the question...is this sudden lack of willpower related to the new professional stress in my life OR is that just a convenient excuse for falling off of the wagon because (maybe, just maybe...) I wasn't enjoying the ride anyway. The truth is, when I allow myself to eat chocolate - even just a little bit of it - I am so happy and at peace. (For about 30 minutes, then I'm wracked with guilt and, often, a stomach ache.)

One of my dearest friends used to roll her eyes at me and tell me that I wasn't happy unless I was finding something to give up - something to sacrifice in my life. I'd like to scoff at that analysis but she pretty much hit the nail on the head. Even if I do have a moderate tendency towards asceticism, however, isn't it a valuable thing for me to give up sugar? Isn't it healthy?

I sort of hate the fact that I can't wear a few of my jeans anymore - that's way sucky. So...I suppose I need to recommit to this no-sugar decision. Ugh. Kind of like those church camps where on Thursday evenings you were pressured to "re-dedicate your life to the Lord." Man...I hated those Thursday night services. (Note: if you aren't a recovering Southern Baptist, you might not know what I'm talking about.)

Hmmm.......well - I don't feel like re-committing to anything right now. And it has nothing to do with the bag of semi-sweet morsels (oooo....morsels....) that is calling to me from across the kitchen...


Renee said...

Fabulous post! I actually think giving up processed sugar is a good thing. But there are studies that show that chocolate actually releases those "good feeling" endorphins. I can't see how that's a bad thing. I don't eat cookies, muffins, cake or processed sugar like that, but I still break off a square of dove chocolate when I need a lift.

I think the "everything in moderation" cuts both ways. That can mean using moderation in consumption but it can also mean moderation in cutting out. Right?

I don't think anyone should give in to everything all the time. (the end result of that would be me) but I also don't think anyone should deny everything all the time.

Besides, honey! Chocolate and red wine are a match made in heaven!

JennInAustin said...

LOL! True...as are chocolate and raspberries.