What Happened When I Realized Carbs (and sugar) Were the Enemy

 

Over the past year I’ve been trying to find an antidepressant that works for me, and it’s been a hell of a roller coaster. Mentally, and physically. Physically, as in the roller coaster was the numbers on the scale, going up up up up UP! I was on my third try with meds, and finally, this one wasn’t making me gain weight. But it wasn’t helping me lose either and I was 40 pounds heavier than before I ever popped a pill. I wanted desperately to lose some weight, so I was working out like crazy, eating better, and after months of hard work, I lost a WHOPPING… 4 pounds. The roller coaster got stuck and I was pissed.

Then my family moved into our very first house and there was a lot to do, so it all slipped to the back of my mind. We didn’t have a functioning kitchen for a good week, and between that first week and the weeks leading up to the move, I lost count of how much fast food and pizza we all ate. But once we were all settled in, I was ready to make a change. A big one.

 

I had been looking into the keto diet for a while, but I seriously doubted it. Everything about it made me shake my head. For one, it goes against the whole standard american diet pyramid thing we’ve all been taught. In a nutshell, the keto diet is a way of eating that makes your body stop burning carbs(glucose) for energy, and it starts burning fat instead. You do this by decreasing your carb intake, low enough that you can’t depend on it for energy anymore. I didn’t think I could do it. But mostly, no way I’d be able to give up carbs and sugar! Chocolate has sugar! But then it hit me.

unhealthy white sugar concept

SUGAR

I started paying attention, and I noticed whenever I had too much sugar, I changed and my mood swings were bad. Like angry, She-hulk, monster mommy bad. I’d be having a great day and then stop for a frozen, sugary coffee indulgence because, why not? Within ten minutes I went from super good day to, “everything is too loud, these kids need to go away, I need to be left alone!” I was yelling at the kids when they didn’t deserve it, and snapping at my husband for no reason. I was blaming my depression, I was blaming PMDD, I was blaming my husband. When the culprit was the crap I was putting in my mouth.

So I looked back on the keto thing, and it clicked. This diet requires you to give up sugar, and I really should do that anyway… Why not? If the only goal was to lose weight, I might have given up a few times, but once I got past the keto flu and let my body detox a bit, I was feeling great. It hasn’t been magic, my mental issues are still there. But I started noticing good days again. I wasn’t snapping at the kids for no reason, and my husband has noticed that I’m a lot calmer. The last few days of my cycle that usually have my finger hovering over the call button for a suicide hotline, now have me just… Normal level depressed I guess? Like I said, I’ve still got my issues, but now I’m not fueling them with the evil that is sugar!

Not to mention, since starting this new way of eating, I’ve lost 30 pounds. That damn roller coaster got unstuck, started going down, and I jumped the hell off. Because if I keep up this lifestyle, I’m not going to keep going up and down with my weight. I might have my good weeks and bad weeks because of the PMDD, but now I can at least track it all again instead of wondering why the hell I’m feeling so stabby on what’s supposed to be a good day.

deadliest-coaster-622x415

Now, I’m not trying to sell anyone on the keto diet. I’m a terrible salesperson anyway. But I think people who struggle with certain issues *cough* PMDD *cough* need to look closer at what they put into their bodies to see if maybe, just maybe, some of the fault lies in that. It’s a bit embarrassing to look back on how long it took for me to come to this realization for myself, but I’m finally working on it and seeing results. I’ve given up on sugar and carbs and I’m never going back. Plus, sugar free chocolate exists and it’s actually not bad, so there’s that.

Now, it’s time to give up coffee caffeine. Pray for me!

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