February 2012

The No (Added) Sugar Challenge Shocker!

by Sally on February 20, 2012

This is not as hard as I thought it would be.

Day one: Rough.

Day two: One mammoth, splitting, day-long headache.

The rest of the week: No problem.

I even went out of town to a friend’s surprise birthday party, where I was faced with almond cake with buttercream frosting and molten-lava chocolate brownies with vanilla ice cream. But it didn’t faze me.

Do I chalk this up to ironclad willpower? Of course not. I’d never turned down buttercream frosting. Ever. In. My. Life.

The shocking part of this No (Added) Sugar Challenge is that my cravings disappeared in a matter of days. I still have a Pavlovian response to the end of mealtime: “Bing!” the bell in my head rings. “Time for something sweet!” But I eat fruit, and the feeling passes. The natural sweetness of foods is, for now, pretty satisfying.

Here’s one of my recent favorites:

Chocolate Peanut Butter Smoothie
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 frozen banana, cut into pieces
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon natural peanut butter
  1. Blend everything together and drink immediately.

If you are taking the No (Added) Sugar Challenge, how is it going for you? I’d love to hear about it!


Today, you may have expected to read a post here about how to prevent candy overdose in your kids or sneak kale puree into a pan of Valentine’s Day brownies for your unsuspecting family.

Today, I’m not writing about those things.

Instead, I’m writing about Donna.

You may remember Donna from my previous posts. The daughter of my friend Mary Tyler Mom, Donna died in 2009 after 31 months of treatment for an aggressive brain tumor. Her story captured the attention of thousands and thousands of people, who carry in their hearts the lesson Donna gave us all: Always. Choose. Hope.

I’m proud to join a slew of bloggers today in asking you to hug your own little Valentines just a bit tighter–and consider donating to help fight pediatric cancer.

On March 24th, people all over the country will be shaving their heads in solidarity with kids fighting cancer to support St. Baldrick’s Foundation, the largest private funder of pediatric cancer research in the US (they’ve raised more than $120 million since their creation in 2000).

Donna’s Good Things, the non-profit Donna’s parents created in her honor, has formed a team of “Shavees”. Their goal is to rasie $20K, and we can help them do that. (Bonus: An anonymous donor will match every dollar donated from today until Saturday up to $2K.)

Here’s how to help:

Visit the Donna’s Good Things team page and make an online donation.

Find an event near you and volunteer (or become a Shavee!). If you can’t find an event near you, organize your own.

Why donate today? Because on Valentine’s Day, we think a little harder about the people we love and the reasons we love them. For too many parents, a child that they love is gone. Let’s help fund a cure.

Photos by Pixeldust & More

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Project 40: My Two Week No-Sugar Challenge

February 7, 2012

I have a deep and abiding love for sugar. As a child, I passed up all manner of candy bars in favor of sticky-sweet Pixy Stix, SweeTarts, and Lik-M-Aid. I sneaked spoonfuls of powdered sugar when my mom was baking and sucked on Sour Patch Kids until my tongue felt numb. But lately, sugar has […]

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