Lent (351st new thing).

January 2, 2013 § Leave a comment

My mother gives up something for Lent every year despite not being Catholic. Usually it’s something small but tasty like chocolate. On Day Three Hundred Fifty-One I also gave up something in honor of Lent. I hastily chose High Fructose Corn Syrup after hearing about how awful it was for you, but mostly because if I had picked “soda” I couldn’t drink the fancy San Pellegrino orange carbonated beverages I had recently bought.

What was I thinking?!

Once I made my decision I began to look around in the refrigerator and cupboards to see what I would need to eliminate from daily consumption. I thought it would be easy. Nope. High Fructose Corn Syrup is in everything. My breakfast usually consisted of one of those trail mix bars on my way to work each morning. HFCS was the second ingredient. I checked out the back of my newly discovered tasty pickled beets. Can’t have those for forty days. I should have just given up soda.

I tried to bring my lunch to work since there was undoubtably HFCS lurking in any fast food meal. I brought old school PBJs, but only after replacing my grape jelly with the natural, no artificial sweetener version. I think it even tasted better, but I could have been simply convincing myself for motivation.

The first week was the most difficult, discovering that all my favorite junk food either couldn’t be eaten or would have to be replaced with a more organic, more expensive version. Basically any sauces or processed food was out of my diet. Almost anything in a can or bottle.

After a few days, I began to get used to reading the ingredient labels on all my food. There were only a few times when I would become completely unwound by the findings. I passed the forty days feeling much more aware of what man made chemicals I was putting into my body. I still try to limit the amount of fake sugar I consume.

But next year, I’ll just give up soda.

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