Posts Tagged ‘girl scout cookies’

Sugar, Me and ADHD; Part 2

June 13, 2012

Sugar is both my friend and enemy and like many other foods, sugar has many different forms and all effect me slightly differently depending on the form. On the positive side, one chocolate covered peanut M&M’s, regular M&M’s, Hershey’s Chocolate Bar, or one of anything in this type of candy can be a tremendous physical or mental stimulant for a quick energy rush.

I always take a couple of candy bars along on my most grueling hikes with tourists and I usually have a candy bar when the hardest part has been reached and the rest of the hike is easier. I get re-energized and always offer some to the others in the group. Usually, people who are slim and in shape decline. However, I am constantly amazed at the positive therapeutic effect it has on those who are a little overweight and out of shape. They too get re-energized and happily finish the walk. I think they are happy to have me, as a thin fit person, share their passion for candy.

At the other extreme are the sweet candies like hard butterscotch or sour balls and the soft jelly candy like orange slices, cherry slices, gummy bears, sour worms and skittles. These are extremely dangerous when they are sold in large bags at low prices, usually six to ten portions in a bag or somewheres around 900 to 1500 calories per bag. They are pretty much pure sugar with a little color and flavor added.  The other dangerous items are boxes of malt balls (700 calories) or Girl Scout Cookies about 1000 calories a box or more.

Now what causes my binge eating of candy?

There is only one answer and that’s availability. Candy bars are sold in 200 calorie units and I have programmed myself to buy just one so there is no problem. When it comes to the second group and without much forethought, I continue eating the sweets until they are all gone. It usually takes less than an hour.

Initially, there is a feeling of childlike euphoria where I am “happy as a kid eating candy.” This moves beyond euphoria to a real sugar rush, almost like an adrenaline flow, where my blood pressure and heart rate both go up. Eventually there is a return to normal where I get very drowsy and irritable and some might even say argumentative.  I am now down 90 pounds from my peak but old habits die hard. I have probably had five or six sugar binge episodes in the past year. I have learned to pretty much avoid them at home by not buying more than a candy bar for any reason. However, on two occasions, the price of gummy candy got so low that I just couldn’t resist the bargin and purchased big bags of gummy candy.

The rest of the time, I binged at my daughters house.  She really is trying to help but just doesn’t understand the word obsession. She will save all of the Halloween Candy and put it in a candy bowl on her counter for guests. Her family has been programmed to avoid eating candy and drinking any type of carbonated  beverage. Before I started the diet she scolded me at Thanksgiving  when she noticed I had not only eaten the candy bowl, but found her stash and eaten my favorites out of that and was working on the rest. I had compulsively eaten more candy in two days than her whole family had in three weeks. 

This started the Great Obesity Debates and the fact that I couldn’t go to Space Camp with my Granddaughters unless I dropped 40 pounds.  She thought my obsession with candy and food was more disgusting and obscene than the bottle of wine I drank every night. I have gotten better, well a little bit anyway, with a lot of  help from her.  Since no one in her house really likes or eats candy, she quietly discards it after Halloween right before I come.  The same is true of Easter.

My only temptation is when I search for and find her stash of Girl Scout Cookies, which she likes and it only takes an hour or two for me to eat the whole box. When she discovers the missing cookies, I put partial blame on her kids and Cousin Cait but she knows I’m lying.  I feel so ashamed, I normally only do one box per trip unless she doesn’t catch me. 

You can shed fat, you can’t shed obsessions. 

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