“any tips to help ease the pain at first?”
-I’m not sure if this will help ease the pain, but one point to keep in perspective while “coming off” sugar is that it is HARD! It’s rarely easy. No different than someone addicted to cigarrettes, alcohol, etc. Our bodies crave sugar because we are addicted to it. The biggest step in keeping it easy is to be prepared with meals and snacks. If you don’t have food available, of course it will be MORE difficult because then you are starving yourself! You still need the calories, and a limited amount of good carbs to lose weight! Make your calories count. Drink LOTS of water. Get LOTS of sleep. Also, if you have NEVER given up sugar before, you should find that you have pretty great results, especially in the beginning and that in and of itself is motivating!
“Could you give a few more sample days (like you did on your diet post)? Maybe some ideas of what else you eat for lunch and dinner?”
-At every meal or snack keep in mind: proteins (meats), or a healthy salad with a protein, and LOTS of vegetables. Specifically green vegetables. Don’t let “vegetable” fool you, some fruits and veggies are naturally very high in carbs. For example, carrots, corn, tomatoes, bananas… you can search online for no/low-carb meals or invest in a no/low-carb recipe book.
“So here’s a question for you…. do you eliminate fruits??”
-no, I do not eliminate them. fruits are “good” carbs. but, I do consider their carb count when eating them. If you want to strictly follow the “Atkins” diet, you eliminate fruit completely for the first two weeks. After that you add it back into your diet, in moderation. I have fruit everyday, but I am not currently trying to lose a lot of weight either. Lower carb fruit choices are a cup full of green grapes, a few strawberries. You can google a fruit-carb count chart online to help you decide which fruits to stay away from and which to indulge in if you are cutting back.