Last month I payed closer attention to what I eat at lunchtime and how I feel after. It looks like sugary deserts cause my energy level and mood to crash like an X-wing on Dagobah. Most of the time I skip the fun sugar-rush part :-(
I'm pretty good at buying fewer processed foods at the grocery store, so my kitchen is already a bit less sugary. I usually don't bother with honey in my tea. Most of the sweet stuff I eat at home is the stuff I bake/freeze myself.
This season I also rediscovered apples, which I hadn't picked up in a while because they tend to go bad on me. Actually, they'd go bad while I was nomming other snacks, so with fewer sugary distractions its easier to remember I have them in the fridge. Also, super cheap in the autumn.
There is a social-trend building up to replace white sugar and HFCS with "healthy" alternatives, but I fall into the "sugar is sugar" camp. Sweetscam.com has info on a variety of sweeteners that are not necessarily as healthy as other sources believe. It is also tricky to replace processed sugar with substitutes in baking and frozen deserts because it adds a structural component. So why not just eat LESS of it?
Lunchtime is where I mess up. At work and far from home, if I don't remember to carry homemade snacks to work I will be tempted by the Crumbs of Starbucks up the block. Also, real world sad, need cupcake.
Now I keep a stash of dark chocolate in my desk for dessert. It has a stronger flavor than pastries and is easier to ration out. Chocolate used to be my go-to for a shock out of my sugar crashes, but then I ended up overcaffienating myself. (I cut all other forms of caffiene out of my diet almost six years ago, restructuring my dietary habits is not a new thing for me.)
When I go out for lunch, I stick to water instead of soda. I still drink de-caff sodas at bars, but late-night is when I can afford to crash. And I've been hanging out in bars a lot less since I began my latest social experiment.
Things seem to be working out thus far. No sudden sugar crashes during my afternoon. I still have sugar cravings, but I don't feel as exhausted as I would during a regular sugar crash. Yay, I'm awake!