The Cookie Test


I made some oatmeal cookies today for the family. I was planning to bring some to my mom, as well. I help keep an eye on her, do her shopping and some light cleaning, and anything else she might need done that can’t be done from her sofa. I digress.

I only tasted the batter twice…then when the cookies were done, I decided I had to taste them to make sure they weren’t poison. Bear in mind that since being on Atkin’s, I usually don’t taste even a finger- I will wash it off and ask everybody how the dessert item turned out when I make it. Today I had to sample these oatmeal cookies. I had two. They were amazingly yummy. I stopped, and went on with my day. I was curious to see whether or not I could stop with just a cookie or two. I did stop. The problem was, I continued to crave more cookies all afternoon, and was sorely tempted to chomp right into the pizza crust instead of just eating the toppings, as usual. 

So, while I probably didn’t get my body chemistry too out of whack, I am disappointed in the strength of the cravings. It shows me how easily I could go right back to pounding pizza, cookies, and ice cream as a lifestyle. It really doesn’t take much to quickly put on twenty pounds- not for me, anyway. Not only do I strongly dislike feeling out of control, I also had the following symptoms when I was addicted to sugar:

* Red, irritated skin.

* Mood swings- like manic-depressive- mild

* Weight gain

* sluggishness

* frequent heartburn

* frequent acne

* Hypoglycemia- complete with grouchiness, cold, clammy skin, shaking, dizziness and light-headedness, and having to constantly be refueling with more carbs to stave off another blood-sugar crash.

So, I don’t know how long I can keep my carb intake to 30-35 grams at the most. In fact, I start gaining quickly when I go over about 32. I am not sure if I should try to keep my limit to this indefinitely. Perhaps I will have to in order to not gain, though. So I wonder if I am in some sort of trap with my eating. But is it a bad trap? Really- I eat a lot of salads and veggies, lean meat and cheeses, and my favorite fruits. Of course, I can exercise more. Sometimes I want to , sometimes I don’t. 

I will keep working on motivation and the discipline of exercise. I guess the reality is, if I like the results I’ve been seeing, I have to keep doing what I am doing. 

The Moderation Principle:

My husband took another approach, and lost 25 pounds. He keeps his portions under control, but still eats his pie, cookies, and ice cream. He doesn’t go overboard. He regularly exercises, and tries to limit fats, for the most part. He does nothing in extreme. I’d say he has something sweet once or twice a week. He still eats burgers, some french fries, and plenty of bread. Again, he practices moderation. He stopped going for seconds, and makes a big deal of talking about how ‘that’s enough. I don’t need any more”. 

I admire him a lot, because I didn’t seem to have that sort of self control. Eating sugars and refined carbs made me more hungry in general, and I seemed to be a slave to eating. Maybe some of us are more sensitive to sugars than others- or, as I am more likely to believe lately, that some of us crave the pleasure- releasing chemicals produced by the brain that sugars provide, without the hefty prices and reputation-ruining nuisance of illegal drug use. 

Exercise also releases these same endorphins. So does sex. So, I resolve to have more satisfying sex and exercise my way to feeling great. Sounds like a plan.

Out for now. 

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3 thoughts on “The Cookie Test

  1. My first reaction is that the language you’re using is concerning. Maybe it’s me, but I hear moral overtones in this. Your husband can’t claim some moral high ground (and you can’t project onto him some high moral ground) because of his ability to moderate his intake any more than a non-diabetic should feel superior because they don’t get a blood-sugar spike when they eat a cookie. Is it self-mastery not to have a food allergy?

    You have a carbohydrate intolerance. You feel better when you ditch the carbs and worse when you eat them. The symptoms include cravings and food fantasies – which you didn’t list as symptoms because you didn’t see them as medical but moral.

    The cookie test was important. Surrounded by carbs in a high-carb world, you will have them on occasion. The test, to me, anyway, exposed that you are framing the conversation in your head wrong. You can change that with practice.

    • Again, you’ve provided some very good thinking points. And, yes, I guess I HAVE placed self-control into the moral high ground. And I am not sure he feels superior, but I think he feels he has the answers. Maybe he does- for himself. Maybe that doesn’t work for me, and I have explained that, but he applauds my victory while simultaneously finds my extremes unnecessary and I feel, foolish.

      But, thinking about this differently, I can see a new perspective may be in order.

      One thing I have noticed lately, is that I have to be very careful to not get dehydrated. I am surprised at how easily that can happen, also!

      • As to your husband feeling he has the answers, I’m reminded of the old saying:

        “People who think they are superior are very annoying to those of us who are.”

        Joking aside, I have become immune to the curiosity, mortification, and ridicule I get when I eat a half-stick of butter at lunch. I often wonder if there is a ‘dead pool’ formed by coworkers betting when I will be found face-down, clutching a bar of butter in my cold, dead hand.

        I remember talking nutrition with someone in work and mentioning eating sticks of butter as an experiment and his eyes went wide as if it suddenly occurred to him he was in the presence of a madman and needed to scan the immediate area for sharp objects.

        As I long ago gave up caring what people thought of me, I find it more amusing than anything. Eleanor Roosevelt said: “What people think about me is none of my business.” I tend to take this approach – or at least it makes me feel better.

        You might want to read my ‘Crazy Uncle Larry’ post from a few years ago: http://lowcarbconfidential.com/2008/04/27/crazy-uncle-larry/

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