Limits and self-control are not traits that come easily to me. If there is a plate of cookies sitting on the kitchen counter, I know that every time I walk by, I will put one in my mouth – I mean, they are just sitting there out in the open! When I realize that this is happening, I have to take measures to prevent it, like putting them in a sealed container and putting them in the pantry. I won’t keep going to the pantry to get them, even if I know they are there. Out of sight out of mind, I guess.
Day 17 talked about limiting sugar, which I just happened to read while eating jelly toast for breakfast. Hmmm. I am guessing not by coincidence. Later that day, I had a large blood sugar drop and felt like I was going to pass out – it was bad and it took hours for me to feel better. 🙁 As the author, Donna Partow, stated: sugar is hard on your immune system – it breaks it down and decreases your immune function (which is definitely what I DO NOT want to do!). From her calculations, the 3 tablespoons of jelly on my two pieces of toast could have weakened my immune system (which is directly connected to my low blood sugar issue) approximately 12.5 percent! That is 1/8 – my body was 1/8 weaker yesterday than it could have been if I had chosen a different meal choice. Scary!
Partow also shared that “Self control is like your own personal city wall.” Just as you would not intentionally tear down the only wall protecting your city from its enemies, you should not be allowing sugar to break down your body’s defenses. By the time I finished reading this, I had already finished my toast. 🙁 BUT, I got up and dumped the bowl of Halloween candy that has been tempting me (and winning) for DAYS – Dumped, right into the trash – Bye bye temptation!
I meditated on this verse as I thought about my consumption of sugar…
“Like a city whose walls are broken down is a man who lacks self-control.”
~ Proverbs 25:28
Self-control also applies to portion control, which brings us to Day 18 of the study. In keeping with the theme of self-control, I am going to start integrating this into our family dinners. Not all of a sudden as my husband might go into shock! Lol. However, it would not hurt any of us to cut back on portion size and think about our second helping choices.
The author recommended using plates that are seven or eight inches in diameter instead of the ten to eleven inch plates that most of us have. I am not in a financial position to go buy new plates today, so I think I came up with a solution that will work for us…
I measured our dinner plates – they are 10″ wide, including the decoration around the outside of the plate. We don’t normally put our food out to the edge, covering the decorations. So, I measured the “inside” part of the plate and it is 8″, which I did not think was too bad. It is a good thing to keep in mind – keep the food off the decorations and then the plate cannot get so overloaded.I also liked her suggestion for NO SECOND HELPINGS, unless they are for veggies. That is another good thing to keep in mind for self-control.
To help with portion control, I may use the advice that my 8th grader shared with us last night. She said that her teacher told her to make a fist. The size of your fist is your tool for finding your correct portion. I like this advice – no special plates or tools – and you always have your hands with you, even while eating out, so you can always portion out your meals. One fist’s worth of whole grain carbs, one fist of meat, and TWO fists of veggies (or one fist of fruit and one fist of veggies). This is a goal I can live with.
So, today is the day that I will BEGIN cutting back on carbs and will start watching my portion sizes. Just like when we started making dietary changes when my husband was diagnosed with diabetes, we can work this in as well, a little at a time. Before we know it, we will be able to have this under better control and show some self-control over our choices. Here’s to stronger city walls… our immune systems, of course!