Sugar, the gateway drug

Before I quit drinking, I started to study the subject of addiction. In the beginning it was mostly on medical sites. I worried about delirium tremens a lot, which, in hindsight, was, in my case, most probably just another way of stalling. But still, it had a function because I started learning about addiction and I could do so easily because I was still drinking and not worried by the anxiety of ‘not having my quick fix to life’.

Being me, I ended up not at the bottom of a 12 step plan but in the darker corners of the internet and alternative treatments. The ‘high cooky, high chocolate’ treatment that is regular in the older sober traditions is believe to be Bad in the alternative corner. With what I have read so for I assume that sugar is the gateway drug that sets the path to addiction. And of course I have searched far enough to find medically educated people saying the same. Here is Bart Hoebel, professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at Princeton University:

http://foodaddictionsummit.org/webcast/hoebel.html

I have watched this vid just to the point where I know I am right with (yes, sorry, that is still strong in me). Mr Hoebel is researching if or not obesity is an addiction, in the sideline he discovers that sugar is addictive and lays down a path of addiction in the brain. People who have been binging on sugar are, in time of withdrawal, susceptible to alcohol and other addictions.

Logically, well, again, my logic, people with hypoglycemia (unstable blood sugar levels) who, after every high are experiencing a sort of withdrawal in small or in big ways, will have the same gain. Which is exactly what Dr. Joan Mathews Larson says. She is an addiction specialist and runs a clinic in the USA where addicts detox on a high dose of nutrients and healthy food in order to restore the imbalance in the body that has been caused by addiction and set a firm ground for the mind and spirit to follow too. She requires clients to quit eating sugar, drinking coffee and smoking too. These three uphold the neurological path of addiction and hence cause cravings that might be misunderstood as cravings for a favorite street drug or alcohol.

So much so far. Happy that I quit using refined sugar in all of its forms. Not using sweeteners either. I do eat bubblegum, but 2 pieces a day or so. My sugar urges are biggest say 5 to 10 minutes after a meal. Not sure why. I would say I would say that is counter logical – if that is even a word. If you would know what would cause that I would be happy to hear it. ๐Ÿ™‚

xx, Feeling

Sugar….. eating away at my confidence and Rosy Kuhn

Again I have fallen into the sugar trap. This time with 2 pieces of chocolate but Grrrrrr!!!! I would not have thought this could influence me but obviously it is the fluctuation in sugar levels that gets to me. Constantly 5 pieces of chocolate does not have an effect. No sugar for a week and then to 2 pieces does have an effect.

Feeling down, depressed, feeling like I have been drinking (for the record: I have not), feeling lousy, useless, berating myself at high speed; waste of space. Feel like I wanna give in and nothing matters anymore. Fuck I hate this. I’ve been here before and shit I don’t want to be here.

It is half an hour later. I learned fromย  watching Recover 2.0 online conference where Tommy Rosen speaks with Dr. Rosy Kuhn. She says something along the lines of: we look at what people want to reach and then at the obstacles that keep them from getting there. And again I realise that whenever I am in a shithole I go ALLLLLLLLLL the way. Just feeling sad is not enough, I need at least some serious berating and destructive thinking to finish it off. She speaks of restless, irritable discontent. I don’t want to be there. Hell no. I rather have serious self destruct than that pfffflllllll grrrrr blehgh feeling. Hmmm, I realise now that restless, irritable and discontent for me means feeding time. Lack of sugar in the brain. Guess the subject of the day is sugar. And despite the negative consequences and despite actually disliking the taste of the chocolate I ate today (my second favorite chocolate… so, pffff, beats me) I know I still will eat it again.

Aaah! Google autocomplete says that restless, irritable and discontent are often searched together with ‘big book’. Ghegheghe… it’s an addict thing. No, it’s a human thing and people fix it with their own solutions. Guess it is time to finish the Rosen – Rosy interview. :-). Aaah, we avoid them with substances, attitudes and emotions. Right. Count me in!

We need to see what is on the other side of restless, irritable and discontent and everything else is either avoiding, denying or distracting. Yep.

She speaks of families having a paradigm and it being build by believes and attitudes and all kinds of things. Parts of our paradigm that was securely put in place was: Men are obsessed with sex and they’ll do anything to have it and women are victims. Both my parents believed that and actually acted out that story themselves. It is the part that I struggle with the most these days. Want to let go, can’t let go, want to let go, can’t let go. Pffff…. Nasty territory.

Rosen and Rosy continue: ‘I think people think there is a There; ‘When I get There, I’ll never make those mistakes again, when I get There I’ll be happy and live will be easy.’ Hell yeah, when I get There I will be nice and loving and I will have lost about 25 kilo’s at the least and I will be rich and have no problem with dealing with my finances. And of course there will be this loving man who gives no problems and takes of when I need alone time.

Noticing how you choose to choose what you choose. Wow! If you have not seen her, take a chance to do that now. :- ) I’m not finished watching yet but it is bedtime here. I would have never thought I would like somebody with such an intellectual approach to working shit out. I’m at 29 minutes in the video and I do still distrust that absolute use of mind in her but what she says really connects. Interesting.

Thank you for reading. ๐Ÿ™‚ I guess I have somehow stepped out of my misery of earlier this evening.

I am happy that I quit and scared that I get into difficulty so easily. And frustrated because I don’t want to give up sugar. Not sure why because it is poison and I don’t really like real sweet stuff. Ooh, yeah: I am bored with the lack of tastes I am experiencing in daily life so I guess it is time for some Asian spiced cooking.

I want: to go to bed. It has been a long, eventful day.

I need: to sleep.

I take: some Schuessler tissue salt on feeling not wanted.

Insights brought on by ‘eating clean’.

Since last Friday I changed my food intake to no wheat, no dairy, no meat, no sugar, no additives. Vegetables, brown rice, little fruits, nuts, few eggs, some white fish only. The first three days I was ecstatic. But by now I guess my feelings are limited to ecstatic and depression – very addicty. Up to yesterday I was very pleased with the way it worked out. Less impulses from exciting flavours really brought my spirits down to earth and made me able to focus on a task longer than 2 minutes. I actually shutdown Facebook and mail when blogging and well, all those consequently. It was a big relieve. Also the fog out of my head cleared up. The Fog is still bothering me even though I am 5,5 months out of that prison called drinking.

The clean eating experience has the same tremendous effect on my body as quitting drinking did. I am glad I did not do them together, I would have been wiped off the planet with all the emotions and feelings and experiences coming through while the Fog lifts.

Yes I know I have been a [INSERT WORD] about sugar because I know it is bad, and for me more so than for most (non addicted) people because I have this physical condition that makes my body react to sugar like crazy. So taking care what I take in is important. And yet I did not anymore. A week ago I was up to half a bar of chocolate again (that is 50 grams of 85% chocolate now) a day. Even reading back in this blog gives me chocolate and sugar urges. I have that less with alcohol. Then again, I call it alcohol because if I would call it beer it would set off more triggers.

Yesterday, that would be day 6 of clean eating I guess, I suddenly had a sugar craving that was immense. Bigger than any alcohol craving I have experienced in my life – which might not be saying anything because I always gave into them until I decided to stop and then I killed the cravings when they even thought of popping up. So, well, not withstanding the comparison that is biased, I did have sugar cravings and the result was: GUILT! BLAME! SHAME! Wow….. overwhelming. Very informative, even though I had not worked out where it came from suddenly because I had not changed my food.

And it made me realise that I have been a pompous ass with people having difficulty with quitting alcohol – because for me, even though I was deep in, I think I had an easy time coming out. If it is even half as bad as what I had yesterday than… ok…. hmmm…. I think I start to understand why it is difficult. And I think I understand why Jason Vale has had such a success with his ‘don’t drink but juice’ approach because these juices contain all the minerals, vitamins and sugar to feed any cravings.

What did I do with my cravings? I ate a teaspoon of mulberries, and then another and then another and then I quit counting (sounds familiar?) Mulberries are very nice and ecological and whatever superfood they are but also at least 50% (natural, but still) sugar or so. I just wanted it to go away. I could not focus, did 10 things at the time again. Amazing. And no, I have not worked it out yet. Don’t know where it came from.

Another thing on food. I have a cold belly since yesterday when I ate rice with vegetables and fish in coconut broth. And the wise women said; don’t eat coconut products because they cool down your intestines. Coconut oil and products are meant for the tropics. I figured out that this is exactly why they grow in the tropics and not in Western Europe: we don’t need them. ๐Ÿ™‚ I believe very much that the natural order is the natural order because a higher power I will call God here, saw that it was GOOD. If God had thought that eating coconuts in The Netherlands was a good idea, he would have planted them there. So…. pffff, another restriction to get me back onto the good path.

Guess I have to dive into the Ayurvedic teachings. For those who don’t know: Ayurveda is / are (?) ancient concept / teachings from India about healthy living. Amongst others it includes eating to the physical type that you are and where you live. To put it simple you can say that the fat lazy people who are sick need food to excite them and put some fire in them. And excited people who are so spirited that their candle burns out even before they are half-finished need foods to slow them down. (Don’t tell them that I simplified it like this… ๐Ÿ˜€ ) But ayurveda is very complicated to learn. Pfffff….. Maybe I should just visit an Ayurvedic doctor, make it easy on me instead of wanting to do everything myself.

So now again I have 10 things on my plate that I think I need to learn and somehow I think I need to do that BEFORE I get myself a job – which is ridiculous because by now I sleep bad at night over how to make ends meet in 3 months to come. My procrastinating has lessened, I can think of things and do them now, when they are small. My spark plug is restoring but the next thing to deal with is shame, fear and guilt. And the realisation that my internal guide might say: it is not time yet (even though the Time will be there within a few days), but an internal guide might not know about finances – or?

Also I am taking the time, when I can handle it, to look into feelings of discomfort. Because they are a guide too. The things I SHOULD be doing. :-D. It works, doing those things relaxes me. There is nothing wrong with 80% of the should’s I experience. I was looking for the pressure of the shoulds to go away but they are actually very good indications of things that need to be done. It is my idea that after I actually do those 80% I might want to look at the 20% of unreal expectations. Which is probably impossible because most likely I will not be able to differentiate between the 80 and the 20 otherwise they would not be in the same basket anyhow. As long as the 80% has a function to fire me on, which I realise by now that they don’t because the BLAME me and make me feel inadequate continuously.

Pffff, running in circles. I am loosing faith in my approach of feeling my way back into life. Maybe running in circles is nothing else but energy having build up because it can not go out another way. Maybe I should do some cleaning. ๐Ÿ™‚

Running in circles because I don’t want to make a choice. As long as I don’t choose I am free. I spoke with a friend of mine yesterday, on romance. She said: I would love to be asked to marry by [insert description of prince]. But it never happened. I said: I have been asked 5 times (well, ringlessly probed) but I never said yes. The conclusion was: no matter with what idea you approach something, the results seem to be the same.

And I don’t want to say it because I get the feeling that I go off the planet here but: in the end it is all the same. Take away judgement, opinions, shame, guilt and then somebodies road is somebodies road. There are quicker roads, guided by that which is inherently good but even then, we will meet obstacles because nobody knows all about what is inherently good. What is bad has a function too. The circle of life does not stop after birth.

And just in case this vague insights are not true I think I might as well do my stuff on the earthly plane too :-D. I mean, I wasn’t put on this earth for nothing, I guess it should be an earthly experience. ๐Ÿ™‚

I am happy that I quit and that I got out of that dark prison.

I want: things to be simple

I need: to organise and make choices.

I take: nothing, don’t know what, see I need. ๐Ÿ™‚ I have started the alcohol desensitization again though. That is part of the deal: first you do 3 months of the test phase and answer questions and then you get access to the actual training that they think has most effect. It worked out I had been in the group of people doing the training that had most effect in the first place already. I like it. It gives me peace. And also, works as an indulgence in the religious version of that word: if I have not been thinking about being sober or filling in my life, I do a training session and I feel that I actually did do something. ๐Ÿ™‚ Good for the low days.

I hope I have not bored you out of your chair by now. It may sound silly but I feel there is a still hidden purpose behind this blog that I am not aware off yet and that at some moment looking back to a complete development of me is going to be important and that it is part of my path. I don’t know. I’m going to put it down now, but I feel I am an object of study for someone, maybe a student. Paranoia mixed with megalomania is my favorite state of being. ๐Ÿ˜€ Have I left the planet? Pffff, not sure. If I have it is important to note this down because there comes a time when looking back is going to be important. If it were a friend of mine saying this I would think she had lost contact with earth by now. Psychosis, that is what I would think and my state of being sort of feels like that. So if you are a student and following my blog as a study project, please leave a note :-). And then again…. it doesn’t matter what superstition things I have because it is not going to feed me when the money runs out so I might as well get my ass moving!

Does any of you have that feeling, maybe it is vanity even, to think that your blog, apart from it being important to me, and possibly, hopefully here and there to other sober or addicted people, that there is something else, another purpose? Or maybe it is easier to get an answer to that without first telling that I think that is paranoia, megalomanic or psychotic :-D.ย  We shall see. ๐Ÿ™‚

Have a nice day!

xx, Feeling

Tadaaaa!!!! I feel normal. Yes! Yes!

Girls, guys! I feel normal today! ๐Ÿ™‚

Not kidding. I feel absolutely normal, like I have not felt in more that 30 years. How normal? I will explain that with a tiny story. A few weeks ago I rang my sister-in-law but got her 11 year old son on the line.

‘Hi, this is Feeling, how are you?’

‘Am fine?’

‘Every time I speak with you it feels like you are surprised that I ask how you are. Are you?’

‘Yes….’

‘Why?

‘Dunno…… Why should I not be fine?’

‘Yes, true!’

I hope you can you remember the time that you felt like this? Or maybe I should start with saying that I hope you have felt / do feel like this; there where ‘being fine’ is so natural that you are surprised that people ask. I hope you have, I hope you do. For me that is at least 30 years ago, I guess it is pre-drinking time. It is also pre assaults time, and pre mother-gets-cancer time and pre parents-fight-night-and-day, pre school-drop-out time. But it was there. And I felt like that today. ๐Ÿ™‚ Good.

No booze, no sugar. I feel normal. I hope it is that simple. We’ll see. But if you don’t mind I am not going to test it. ๐Ÿ™‚

Happy-ish that I quit. It actually feels normal. Why would I drink? It feels like smoking: other people do it but I don’t. The sugar is more difficult, even though I never got more that a quarter of a teaspoon of that per day. Poison! Well, specifically to me. It also is more difficult to avoid and less accepted than not drinking alcohol. Aaahr, who cares. I feel normal! Ha!!

It really beats feeling like the subject of a Radiohead song.

This feeling of ‘pffffff….’

Still not feeling 100%, guessing it comes from the giving blood at the GP or from kicking of the sugar. I was pretty clean but pretty clean did not work out to be enough and today I am experiencing cravings. Sugar cravings mainly but there are these thoughts that say that a beer would be a good solution too. So quitting sugar for 100% is actually effecting my alcohol cravings. Exactly what the book said. But I am not happy about it.

And now I have this feeling of ‘pffffff…. bored now…..’ that tells me the solutions should come from the outside. Did sleep this afternoon, calmed me down a little.

I should take better care of eating enough and regularly. Still not doing that properly. Why not? I’m a bit tired of my own moaning and sternness. Trap. I still have difficulty thinking so I might as well eat something and be of to bed.

I should have set the egg timer every 15 minutes, I would have noticed earlier that I had not eaten enough. I did eat but it was raw red cabbage with carrots, apple, fresh ginger and a yoghurt dressing. Very good! But it probably takes more calories than it brings…

That’s the bad thing with low sugar, it also affects the brain and it makes me careless. Grrrrrr… I don’t want this. Moaning now. And there is the desperate feeling. Hello! If only all of my life I would have known this. Want to win a war? Cut down the sugar supply to the country and you are done. Did you know that the country that I live in has its own heavily subsidised sugar production? It is by no means commercial but it is considered to be of strategic importance.

Happy that I quit. A bit surprised that I come to my first real craving at, what is it, 6 weeks or so. Lucky that they are about sugar. Happy that I know how it works. Irritated that I know but don’t act upon it. Need to stock up tomorrow as well because we will do a 50km bike tour. Which is good!!! Not proud, didn’t do The Plan, started it but went to sleep.

I thought I could have just 1

One piece of carrot cake that is. And here I am, 5 o’ clock in the morning, been awake for an hour during which I wondered why the f@ck I drank last night. I did not! I FELT like I did though. Shit am I happy that I am sitting here sober (again?). Not sure what to write. Confused. Crying. Shit this is bad.

Yesterday I wrote about the concept of enough and I obviously jinxed myself because I finished of the day with 3 pieces of carrot cake and no dinner. Never in my adult life have I eaten 3 pieces of cake, ever. I don’t even like cake, well, this was good cake. I hate anything that tastes like sugar. But it was well disguised with nuts and carrots and tasting very well and It made me happy so I thought it could not be THAT bad… Isn’t that amazing, I am just reading a book saying that I have wasted 30 years of my life on booze because I get addicted easily due to my hypoglycemic constitution and I eat sugar and think it makes me happy. It did actually.

And then I went to bed and slept for 2 hours. Woke up, very irritated with I don’t know, everything. Slept again, woke up defeated. Slept again, woke up crying and thinking ‘Why did I drink? I will never drink again. I will stop tomorrow, for sure now.’

Images of everything I failed at in life, images of bills I have to pay, images of work I have to find but feel I still can’t. Images of my mother being soooo disappointed in me. Because I drank and because I started to drink again…

Images of knives circling around me ‘If I just make one cut it will be all over. Just one, don’t worry…. it might hurt but you are already hurting and then it will be all over, forever… No worries, no pain, ever, just one cut….’ Obviously nothing happened but shit, I thought that was behind me. I know it is in me but I don’t identify with it anymore, or so I thought. Finding out that thinking has little to do with free will. These thoughts stopped IMMEDIATELY with stopping with alcohol. And I eat sugar in large amounts and they are back.

I did not drink. It is 1 hour later now and I still can not believe that I did not drink. But I DID NOT DRINK! I ate 3 pieces of carrot cake – present from the guys that now take care of the foundling.

The cat was all upset all night, walking circles on the bed, trying to sniff me, trying to get me out of bed. I drank water, did not get me out of my, I was going to say ‘alcohol infused state of mind’ but I did not drink alcohol. I still can’t believe what the fuck I have done to myself all these years and now WHILE I AM READING A BOOK FOR GODS SAKE ABOUT SUGAR AND HOW ALCOHOL ADDICTION COMES EASY TO THOSE WITH HYPOGLECEMIA. I KNOW I AM HYPOGLECEMIC!!!

I just did not believe that it would influence me that bad, that I would come to this. I thought I could handle it. Sounds familiar. I only had one bite because it would be impolite to chuck them away immediately – which is what I do with any sugary gifts. There are 4 sugary things I might eat, 4 times a year at most and I had written down a paragraph of the brand, content and price of the chocolate that I do eat but I deleted it. Noticed that I talk about chocolate as an addict speaks of ‘excellent wine’. Pfffffff.

I DON’T WANT ANY OF THIS!!! I don’t want the booze, I don’t want the addiction, I don’t want the sugar issues. I just want to be normal. Not sitting here in the middle of the night typing and crying and trying to work out what the fuck I am doing in this world where 80% of the calories of this Western world are poison to me. Well to anybody, but anybody does not care (yet).ย  I do understand my mood swings way better now. This Jekyll and Hyde in me. I just did not think it would be that bad… I don’t know, I don’t know what I thought. I guess I just did not think. I don’t trust my thinking anymore. Da fack. Need to solve that one quickly.

I am going to trust myself when I am happy and lively because that is a natural state of being. If I am not I need to check what I ate, no poisons, enough calories, well spread out through the day, enough nutrients, enough sleep, enough contact with nice people and nature. If that is ok I need to check if there are external factors. Well, I guess this will pass too.

During ayahuasca sessions I have been raving mad about visions of little play towns build of sugar that popped up in my head. I felt violated by the images that came up in my mind and I discarded them as ‘brain snot’; the stuff that needs to get out-of-the-way before you can get into an ayahuasca session. Like parts of a dream that consist of not so important things that you saw during the day. Also because I would have thought that it would show me that alcohol is bad, not sugar, I knew that sugar is bad. It works out it that I did not know.

It took some time to write this and I am ok now I guess. Relieved that I did not drink. Sad that it really is true; the thought that I did not want to think about because I knew it would upset me: I can never ever drink again. Not that I want to, but it is very final for forever. Not just final for now. I can deal with final for now. Final for forever is a bit too big to handle. Don’t wanna go there. If I am fine with final for now that is fine. That’s all I need. And I can not eat sugar anymore. Back to the 100% rule.

I think I set myself up yesterday morning already with my vegetable shake: I had run out of celery so I added 3 apples to the mix. I was wondering if that would not be too much sugar. So it was. Apples are ok, when I eat them, juicing is a different thing because it only leaves me with the sugary juice. I would never eat 2 apples, but I can drink up to 3 apples in no-time. Not good.

Pfffffff. 8 o ‘clock. Tired now. Sad. Sad that it is all true. Happy that I quit? Not sure. Yes. Yes, happy that I quit, in a tired sort of way. Just did not expect things to get difficult after a month of having the wind in my sails. Happy that my mom studied nutrition and passed some of the curiosity on towards me. Happy with my freaking book! Hurray! This might as well have saved my life.

Not happy that it is all true. This is going to take years. Well, I don’t have to stop my life for that. Just feels that way. Funny that again I notice that the thought of having to go 100% non sugar scares more than having to go 100% alcohol free while only about 1% of my calories in a week come from ‘unavoidable’ sugar. Apart from yesterday that is. Kicking of the sugar in the early ’90 has given my biggest withdrawal symptoms of all: worst than cold turkey from alcohol, worst than cold turkey from smoking, worst than cold turkey from 3 liters of diet coke and ‘all other caffeine and black and green tea’ with it – because that is how I roll – all or nothing. And that is very much how the hypoglycemic mind works.

Tired. Happy in a sad and tired way, which I guess is not happy. Not proud, shaken. Happy that I will see GP3 end of this week. Happy that I changed to a homeopathic one, makes stuff easier to explain. ๐Ÿ™‚

Ha, I can breathe again. That is good. Tired now. Very tired. And I wish I had something physical that I could write without having to check the spelling every time.

And…. Music!!! I love ‘On the rocks’ but this is one of the worst numbers they did but with every detail of this performance they act out exactly the aggresive confusion that went on in my mind.