“How hard could it be?” he said to himself, terrified.
By
Nick Bhasin

9 Jun 2016 - 12:46 PM  UPDATED 28 Jun 2016 - 4:32 PM

Am I a sugar addict? I don’t know. I don’t like to put labels on myself unless they’re labels like “charming” and “handsome”.

I’ll say this: I am incapable of eating a small amount of anything involving chocolate and/or ice cream and/or chocolate chip cookie dough. I can’t have it in the house. If anything like that is within eyesight or earshot, I start to sweat and it takes all of my willpower to gorge myself on it until I can’t remember my own name.

So when I heard that six British celebrities were going to quit sugar on a farm for Sugar Free Farm on SBS, I thought, "Here's my chance to kick the sugar monkey off my back and finally get my post baby bikini body.” (I’ve got an 8-month old baby.)

And while I may not be a celebrity (yet) and I don't live on a farm, I thought that by enduring this lifestyle change challenge, I could inspire you (or someone you know that's very easily inspired), to quit sugar and live forever.

I thought, "Here's my chance to kick the sugar monkey off my back and finally get my post baby bikini body.”

Here are the rules, as prescribed by Angelique Panagos, the nutritionist on the show:

No sugar

No honey

No syrup

No sweets

No chocolate

No fruit

No jam

No refined carbs

No processed food

No biscuits

No cakes

No alcohol

No low fat products

No fizzy drinks

No cordial

Real food nothing else

Right now, you might be thinking, “Sounds like it'll be a pretty tall order for you cookie doughboy. Are you sure you can handle it?"

Well, I'm not sure the fat shaming is necessary, but to answer your question, I don't think it'll be a big deal. There isn't a lot of sugar in my diet. I keep desserts to a minimum and ice cream isn't allowed in my home.

But I do drink Diet Coke every day and put Equal in my coffee - that's out. 

I eat sandwiches for lunch but most bread is questionable so I won't be doing that anymore.

I also eat cereal almost every day for breakfast, so that could be an issue.

And I do put sugar in porridge.

So to me, it looks like minimal lifestyle changes. No problem. A piece of cake. (I won’t eat cake.)

 

Saying goodbye to the old, sugar-filled me

The night before the detox began, I ate like a man possessed. Like I would never see or feel food again.

3 bowls of mac and cheese.

3 glasses of red wine.

Half a pint of Ben & Jerry's ice cream. The Tonight Dough. It's a crass mixture of too many tastes and textures and it's wonderful.

So long, I thought. I won't need you losers anymore. Daddy's going sugar free. Deal with it.

And I went to sleep feeling confident - and sick. Really shouldn't have overdone it like that.

 

Off to a bad start

That was a Saturday.

On Sunday, I drank my coffee without Equal and avoided Diet Coke. Not a problem.

For breakfast I ate eggs with spinach and cheese. Easy.

But a couple of hours later, it occurred to me that I had no idea what I was going to eat for lunch or dinner. I hadn't bought any groceries. I hadn't researched any recipes. I was not prepared.

Lethargy set in and I lay down on the floor, thinking the worst...

Oh god I’ve made a huge mistake. What am I doing to myself? How will I get anything done? How will I have the energy to care for my children?!?!

My lady friend returned from the movies with an enormous bucket of popcorn. I have no idea why she brought that kind of temptation into my home. She didn't know either (she had started the lifestyle change too and it was affecting her brain function).

Oh god I’ve made a huge mistake. What am I doing to myself? How will I get anything done? How will I have the energy to care for my children?!?!

To make things worse, she set the bucket down next to me on the floor. Acting completely on its own like in Evil Dead 2, my hand reached into the bucket, grabbed a fistful of popcorn and shoved it into my mouth. Then it did it again. And again. "Stop it!" I screamed, but my pleas were muffled by more popcorn. And more. Until it was gone.

Assuming there's an enormous amount of sugar in popcorn (there isn't), I decided to give up. I made a salad for dinner, but I smothered it in this incredible honey lime dressing I'd made the week before. Then I helped it along with a pint of my favourite beer (Little Creatures). 

Was I proud of what I’d done? No.

But I did learn a valuable lesson: Never start a lifestyle change on a Sunday.

 

Join me next week when, like the Sugar Free Farmers, I'll be in the throes of the lifestyle change. And for incredibly insightful, up-to-the-minute complaining updates on my progress, follow me on Twitter.

Sugar Free Farm airs Thursdays at 7:30pm (AEST) on SBS. After they air, episodes will be available on SBS On Demand.

Missed the last episode? Watch it right here:

 

MORE ARTICLE SWEETNESS:

Episode guide | Sugar Free Farm
Going cold turkey from sugar can be seriously tough and Sugar Free Farm sets out to put this to the test. This three-part adventure sees six celebrities undergo a dietary experiment: living entirely without sugar for two weeks. Breaking their addiction to sugar will push their bodies to the limits. Sugar Free Farm starts Thursday, June 9 at 7.30pm on SBS.