Chocolate and sweets have been faithful companions for most of my life… until a few years ago. My journey with giving up chocolate and sweets has been quite a rollercoaster, spanning more than half a decade. I tried to give up chocolate and sweets several times… over and over again… and I succeeded, but it was never permanent. After the self-restraint I always slipped back and indulged in chocolates and sweets even more, as if there was no tomorrow.
I have always had a sweet tooth – wait, I mean many sweet teeth!
Sugar was my way of sweetening up my life.
In summer, when we went to France for our yearly vacation, I would stock up on sweets and brought bags full of sweets back home. My brothers and I were only allowed to eat sweets on Saturdays. Sometimes, when I asked really nicely and with a sweet voice, my mother would allow me to have some sweets on other days as well.
Then I grew older and started to earn my own money – how delightful was that! I could go and buy chocolates and ice cream, whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted. Who cared about alcohol when I could have chocolates and cakes? Well, it’s not that I avoided alcohol completely… I did start drinking when I was 15 because that’s what everybody did, but boy-oh-boy did that not taste good at all. Good thing I had chocolate to indulge in to take away some of the bad taste of the alcohol!
At some point I realised that I was a chocoholic. Sweets, and especially chocolate, would have a soothing effect on me. Chocolate gave me great comfort when I felt alone, unloved and not met for just being me. What I really craved was to be truly met and deeply loved.
Even when I hadn’t seen my mum all day she would hardly greet me when I came home; she would be watching TV with her headphones on, secretly eating chocolate. I felt incredibly lonely because I felt less important to her than her TV and chocolate. I went into my room and cried for not being met or seen just for being me, a beautiful little girl. So, of course, I ate more chocolate.
I reconciled with my mum long ago and we have had many opportunities to talk openly about this, in addition to everything else in my childhood that I found difficult. We now have a deeper understanding, love and connection than ever before.
The actual journey of ‘giving up chocolate and sweets’ however took many years, going through a lot of trial and error, because it all came from a need to ‘fix’ the problem rather than from choosing a genuine and loving care for myself and my wellbeing. I went through many phases and I would manage to give up chocolate for a few weeks or maybe even a few months here and there, but never permanently.
I would always fall back to being soothed and numbed by chocolate instead of dealing with the hurt inside. I could NOT imagine living my life without chocolate. I remember thinking it would be next to impossible not to have that chocolate sweeten up my life. What would I do with myself?
It was easy to think I would manage to stop right after I’d had a feast! Right then and there I had had enough, I felt sick, emotional, sad and racy, and thought to myself, “that’s it, I’m done”. But I was just like people who have hangovers that tell themselves they will never drink again… until the next weekend, or even the next day. Sometimes I had so much willpower I didn’t have any sweets for several days, but when I went to the store it was as if I had to make up for the days I hadn’t had any sweets. How clever. Of course, then I bought enough supplies of sweets for several days, even weeks. And then I would try to quit again – it was a constant battle, a very vicious cycle.
Through all these years though, it was like I had a little part inside of me that truly never ever gave up and I knew for sure that one day in the future I would not need to use any willpower at all to get rid of my sweet tooth and quit eating chocolate. So I held on to that part in the midst of indulgence. I knew the day would arrive that chocolate wasn’t going to be a part of my life any longer.
I became aware that I was getting more and more sensitive to sweets and I started to feel the effect the sugar had on my physical and emotional health. I would become very emotional before my period, and I could feel the constant underlying raciness inside my body more and more. When I went to bed I could feel my racy pulse and uneasiness inside, which made it hard to fall asleep.
In the end it became very clear that this was a pattern that I no longer wanted in my life and so I started to make choices that helped me heal the hurts that had forever kept me imprisoned, a victim of my past.
I kept connecting more to my body with the help of an esoteric practitioner. With their ongoing and unwavering love and support I am dedicated to go deeper and truly let go of my hurts and my behaviours, layer by layer.
I’m not saying that I’m totally one hundred percent refined sugar free now, but I know I will get there. I am just thrilled to not have the addiction anymore and I feel so much more joy-full and harmonious inside and more mentally stable and less emotional. I’m noticing that there are so many positive side effects from not eating sugar! I have definitely become more aware – more aware of my feelings, more in tune with my mind, my thoughts and reflections. I am learning to truly connect to my body and to honour the signals it gives me.
Chocolate has not been a part of my life for some years now: giving up chocolate for good has allowed me to know that no amount of chocolate can ever fill up the void or drown out the sadness of childhood experiences. I am a grown woman, and what has brought life-changing outcomes has been to take deep care of myself and understand that I am entirely responsible for my own choices.
I am forever grateful for the inspiration by Universal Medicine and Serge Benhayon.
Published with permission of my Mum.
By Nathalie Sterk, Oslo, Norway
Are We Consuming Sugar Or Is Sugar Consuming Us?
How I Gave Up Eating Biscuits
Sugar: The Artificial Sweetener… and My Addiction
We cannot renounce addictions through willpower alone. It is only by connecting to a deeper purpose and being committed to living that, that we find that which has had such a hold over us begins to let go. Or more correctly stated; our dependence on such fillers gradually drops away as we fill ourselves with more purpose and this being our return to Soul (love) and the movements that take us there.
I love what Liane shares here, there has to be a deeper purpose if we wish to let go of our addiction, otherwise we will just replace one addiction with another addiction.
I was not really a chocolate person, I found other things namely alcohol to numb me but I stopped drinking a long time ago, but the hurt still comes up some times to clear and sometimes rather than dealing with it, I seek relief….”I would always fall back to being soothed and numbed by chocolate instead of dealing with the hurt inside.” I have realised that this is ALL about energy because I go into the same energy (mood) with sugar and chocolate that I used to about wine…..this is not about the product but the relief we seek and the energy we choose.
So if its all about the relief we seek, then the only question we need to answer is ‘relief from what?’. The what holds the key to these patterns in all of us.
One thing I have noticed is that when you give things up and get the food product out of your body, the so-called favourite treats smell awful. Now I can’t stand the smell of sweet things like chocolate, pastries and fresh bread.
Yes and we get to feel the true harm they can cause and the harmony and stillness in the body far from our reach.
That is interesting Julie and I am like this with some foods but I still love the smell of pastries and fresh bread. We can go through different stages with our relationship with food and it is always key to listen to our body when it comes to nourishing it and take great care with what foods we put into our body.
Giving up anything is easy when we realise the impact it has on us and why we sought after it in the first place. By impact i don’t just mean the physical impact on the body, the way chocolate makes us put on weight, but the energetic quality we are left with after having products which leave us feeling racy and in disconnection with what we feel. As we start to develop an appreciation for our awareness, products such as chocolate, sugar and the likes become redundant and the cravings disappear.
When we bring in self-love these things we do to our bodies slowly start to drop away because the signals from the body become clearer and we then enjoy the clarity more than the effects of the food.
You can never quit a behaviour that you feel is not loving with a forbidding. It needs a deeper committment to yourself that then exposes the ridiculosy of the chosen behaviour itself.
Will power certainly is not it, the foundational way we live and feel about ourselves needs to change. What we seek into way of comfort is the outcome of what we have chosen in how we have been living, or what we do not want to feel. This is what I am learning and although my foundation is strong, it can be stronger and I continue to learn and feel those cravings…to not feel to numb myself, be it drama or food etc, there are many different ways we can seek to numb ourselves.
For one it is chocolate for another it might be success, withdrawal, alcohol… In the end we all try to avoid feeling the pain inside us, not having being met and abandoned ourself from our essence, which is the continuous, recreated pain we say Yes to throughout our life from young on.
We all know what’s good for us and what’s not – but the best thing of all is to refine our life in a way that is loving, supportive and not about wrong or right. Now that is sweet to me.
And realising, that we need to constantly refine, as we move on, our body asks of different choices all the time.
When we stop acknowledging our own sweetness we then look outside ourselves for a substitute and unfortunately they are readily available these days. However there is always a part of us that is aware that our choices are not supportive but until we can feel safe enough to address the hurts that led to this behaviour it is a cycle of trying to give up through sheer willpower which is destined to fail. For me re-connecting to my body and getting support with working through my hurts has allowed me to let go of many self-destructive behaviours and to enjoy my own sweetness again.
The consumption of chocolate seems to be out of control at present. Given that it has such a big effect on our body sooner or later we will have to have an honest look at why we need it so much.
My thing was not chocolate and sweets I could give them up easily, my vice was salty hot chips, now they were not so easy to give up!!!!!
Recognising the need we have to be soothed by the food we eat is a great opportunity to address the root cause of why we have the addictions we have. This is not about beating ourselves up, or being disappointed but by bringing true understanding to our behaviours. This is about deepening the relationship we have with our body
For me the more open I become to the ways my body is always communicating with me the more willing I am to work in partnership with it and then there is much less judgment and much more loving attention and appreciation.
This is a beautiful observation, working in partnership is a wise plan.
When I travelled to South America I was told that the reason they eat so much sugar was because sugar was used to sweeten their lives. The addiction towards sugar in this place was huge. There was a lot that this place in the world did not want to feel, a lot of hurts that were covered up and numbed from sugar, there was a lot of hurt underneath the sometimes happy personas, there is a lot to be honest about.
Yes well said, that loving commitment to ourselves, to pay attention to why we do what we do and then one step further, how we do what we do, that is what offers us our very own personal relationship with our body and medicine.
Changing the movements in our bodies means we create space to understand why the need to eat or drink things we actually don’t enjoy or want is there. Without that understanding we are having a battle of wills – and in fact we may as well just eat them anyway because by the time we do ‘give in’ it is likely to be in a more destructive way than if we had simply done it and considered why the need was there.
We can never break addictions by using will power because this does not get to the root cause of why we have the addiction in the first place, once our hurts are healed and self love is brought into our lives we no longer need the addiction, for we are fulfilled by our own love.
In honesty I did not think I had will power, I use to think I thought I was so lazy and half committed that I could not finish or start anything….however there are levels of this will power thing and I have realised that if I am not careful (i.e aware) I can fall into will power and drive to pull me through life, instead of being in purpose which is much more gentle, flowing and loving. They do feel very different and this will power thing instead of purpose often involves eating food that is not supportive to not want to feel the hardness and push and drive of will power, it is flat with no joy.
Natalie this brings a huge awareness to the sugar addiction syndrome I too suffered from enormously using sugar to fill and sweeten my life as a reward and constant companion. Learning to appreciate myself and heal my emptiness and hurts has made all the difference and brought an understanding to when I need sweet things to look at what is really going on and the effects it has on my clarity and presence is very noticeable and brings a real responsibility into my life to not have the sugar, and to my health also.
‘Chocolate gave me great comfort when I felt alone, unloved and not met for just being me. What I really craved was to be truly met and deeply loved.’ Natalie, I can really relate to what you share here. Chocolate and sugar was my comfort and soother to the emotional angst within, but it was a soother that was making me sick. In my twenties, I got hypoglycaemia and lived with deep highs and lows of energy levels and would need to eat bang on meal times or I wouldn’t be able to function. When I gave up chocolate and sugar (over a long period of time) it was amazing to feel how my body responded in relation to needing food at certain times and how much more vital and well I felt.
I can relate to this as a kid, of constantly seeking sweets especially chocolate when things were tense at home. It was like a short lived relief to comfort me and get me away from having to feel what was going on around me. Food then became my best friend and I ate my way through life- that has been a big pattern to let go of.
That has been my experience letting go of the hurts one by one. Crazy how I never used to think I had any, but once I started to allow myself to feel these I started to see where else in my life I had not acknowledged how I was truly feeling and this became a focus. To be open and willing to see the all and from here true patterns and behaviours started to disappear and more appreciation for myself has been embraced.
This is a beautiful sharing Nathalie. It sounds as if you have been unwrapping something far more precious than chocolate – the inner sweetness that is and has always been the real you.
I often hear people talk about being sweet and realise that I never wanted to be sweet – sweet was sickly and fake. Then I started to peel back my layers of protection I had taken on to cope with being in the world as a very sensitive young girl and realised that the sweet I was reacting to was the sweet of conforming, of forcing myself to fit into a mould that I thought would be more acceptable than the pretty wild, free-thinking and sweet girl I naturally was!
Yours was chocolate, mine is talking to fill my emptiness, to get stimulated.
I find that I have used chocolate as a way to sabotage my life- I eat it and it brings a heaviness and moodiness into my body. I then have little or no motivation and disconnect from purpose in things and then just struggle through life.
Having gone out for a meal with friends recently I witnessed first hand the effects of sugar on the whole family, after dinner came deserts which was then accompanied by a high. The next morning the difference was really notable as everyone was far more irritable and snappy with each other.
Its funny how many of us don’t look at sugar intake as mood influencer it is.
And the crazy thing is Sam, is this is how the majority of the world live, in that pattern of sugar highs and the low that inevitably comes next. The snappy-ness in the morning would have been like a hangover from alcohol, but like alcohol, sugar is another substance that many are addicted to and in no way want to give it up. And unless honesty comes into the equation this pattern of living will simply continue unabated, and as it does the body suffers.
Allowing our body to feel what chocolate actually does to us is a process and one must also be caffeine free as even the best organic chocolates has that racy affect.
I love how you highlight that we so often try to fix a problem, a behaviour that we feel no longer serves us or hinders us living who we are, yet these are all the end result of the choices we make that stem even deeper from what energy we are saying ‘yes’ to. When we begin to choose love, say ‘yes’ to love, we inevitably begin to develop a loving relationship with the truth of our body and being through which, we naturally begin to honor and nurture ourselves. It is this relationship that supports us to address and heal our hurts. Through this we begin to know and feel more and more what is true and what is not, and our choices begin to change, finding that unloving behaviors begin to drop off, as our awareness of how they feel to us and our body heightens. True and lasting healing from the inside out. It is a very beautiful process of awakening that for me continues to deepen and magnify, which I find continually inspiring.
This really shows how there is so much behind addiction. It is not just because we can – it is actually masking what we don’t want to deal with. And yet we blame the chocolate. But this keeps us away from truly healing the hurt behind the choice.
Our cravings are never ever to do with food but everything to do with our self-worth, and awareness. If we build a life that’s rich and a body that is delicious – why would we want to sweeten it? Thank you Natalie for this great sharing.
Absolutely Joseph Barker. Let’s support each other to build that life that’s rich and a body that is delicious and appreciate that we can do this and acknowledge the love, awareness and honesty that it takes to do so and the awesomeness that we can then offer the world
Recently I have been eating more sugar than I usually do and I’m noticing how much my energy levels have dropped. It’s madness that we reach for sugar when we are tired as all it does is exacerbate the tiredness.
I have never really been a sugar fan more like comforting foods and a lot of it. Most of the time I end up after dinner time with a sore stomach because I have eaten too much. Instead of honouring my sensitivity and all I know I numb it down.
I used to take it or leave it with chocolate but would find myself eating all the same but it wasn’t my go to. When I decide to try cutting out sweet things, well it at least started with refined sugar, I did this with changing it for honey or maple syrup usually. To start with that was good as didn’t get the crazy raciness with sugar. But over event the substitutes just became to much in my body.
For years I was yo-yo dieting and would eat loads of sugar-free yoghurts, which I thought was a healthy slimming option but have since learnt that the artificial sugar acts the same way in the body as if it is real sugar. So, sometimes with the best of intentions we can swap one addiction for another.
My understanding with giving up food is that instead of it coming from a want or need it will be when we are ready. Of course not to use this as an excuse and override the body saying ‘I am not ready yet’ ….. erm which I find myself doing sometimes!! But with foods that I knew I was using for comfort or to not feel they have just naturally fallen away over time. I guess the more willing we are in being honest with what we feel, why we are using that food and having this awareness of what we are eating and why always helps .. having a greater awareness. It was awesome to read how you and your mum have healed your relationship as well .. very cool. What I can also really appreciate is how I was exactly the same in that I had a REALLY sweet tooth from when I was younger Loved chocolate or anything with chocolate but I haven’t eaten chocolate for at least 8 years!!!! To me that is AMAZING! And I did this with zero trying it just naturally fell away with the support of Universal Medicine courses and Practitioners and me just reconnecting to the truth of my body.
“Sugar was my way of sweetening up my life” – love the honesty here Natalie, it’s amazing how uncovering this realisation can direct a whole life towards focusing on self-love. I found the more i started to love and really take care of myself that my insatiable appetite for chocolate waned to disappear. Equally i know today that when life gets a bit intense, i can at times find myself checking food packets for sugar content which is the great revealer as to how i am, how much i’ve lost my sweet self.. and to come back to that as soon as I can.
Just like the empty calories in sugar it does little to fill the empty void of not living the love that we are.
I can’t remember the day I had my last piece of chocolate as it just happened without me thinking this is it. I given up sugar several years before but continued to eat dairy and sugar free chocolate thinking that I would carry on eating it forever. But one day I realised that I hadn’t eaten chocolate for about six weeks and that I, and my body, obviously hadn’t missed it one little bit…that was eight amazing chocolate free years ago and I still don’t miss it.
Something I find with sugar is that once I have started, I want sweeter and sweeter things, it’s like no amount of sweetness will actually do it. When I don’t eat sugar I find my vegetables are already naturally full of sweetness.
I have been surprised just how hard sugar is to give up. I have the sort of relationship with sugar when I think it’s all over, all done and dusted to find that we are back together again. What I find is that the more present I am in my body, and the more aware of my movements I am, the less the urge for sugar is there as I have not allowed my body to be run ragged during the day so I don’t feel exhausted when it’s time to wind down. I find if I’m tired in the evening and I still have washing to hang out and dishes to do then I tend to distract myself from feeling the tiredness by snacking on something that’s sweet.
I can relate to the illusion of having a huge feed and thinking that this will be the final time! It never works of course and it creates this false haggle with will power to fight temptation. Temptation though need not be there if we have truly healed the addiction in the first place.