Happy Monday! I mentioned at the end of Friday’s post that today I would be starting the 21 Day Sugar Detox. Diane Sanfilippo created this program a while ago, but just published a complete book on it last week. If you get the chance, I recommend reading it. It’s filled with not only the rules but also tips and a nice recipe section.

P.S. Notice how I didn’t say you should buy the book? While I fully support paying authors for their work (and at $21 the book is very affordable), I am a HUGE supporter of the public library. Do a quick search for “paleo” at the Chicago Public Library and you will see they have almost every single title you could want, including the 21 Day Sugar Detox.

Anyway, off my soap box. Let’s get to why I’m doing this. Because I have to admit I’ve developed an addiction to sugar. I’d like to say I eat 100% paleo all the time. I’d like to say I eat 100% gluten-free all the time. But I don’t.

It started with a few Pumpkin Spice lattes from Starbucks. Then it was the hot chocolate I blogged about a few weeks ago. Which turned into maple syrup or honey on gluten-free pancakes. Which turned into me, running into a 7-11 at 9pm because I desperately wanted some peanut butter M&Ms….


So why am I doing a “detox?” Why can’t I just give up sugar? Mostly because I like structure. It’s similar to the Whole30. You give up certain foods, in this case for 21 days, to heal your gut and break any addiction to sugar you might have. You might be amazed at how many food items have sugar.

Hidden sugar.png

Remember that post I did a long time ago on 8 Healthy Foods with “Secret” Unhealthy Ingredients? Del Monte canned tomatoes with high fructose corn syrup on the left, and Thai Kitchen Roasted Red Chili paste with the first ingredient being sugar on the right.

And it’s more than just things that are labeled sugar or corn syrup. You’ll also see cane syrup, cane juice, dextrose, maltitol, xylitol… 

As one of the extras available online, Diane made a great list of sugar synonyms. Worth printing out and taking to the grocery store.

In fact, there are a few great one page handouts that you should check out, including her guide to dining out and a 22 day food log to help you throughout the detox.

The only thing you won’t find online is the list of foods to avoid. For that you will have to check out the book. Yes, you could just wing it yourself. It’s a sugar-detox. You give up sugar (and fake sugars). But in the book she splits the program into three levels. Level 1 is for people completely new to paleo and actually still includes grains and dairy. Level 3 is a strict paleo diet plus a few additional foods removed. For those who are curious, I’m starting level 3.

(Until you can check the book out, head over to her website for a free preview of the book , along with links to her podcasts and recipes.)

If you’re interested in following along, I’ll be blogging about my experience. And of course including 21 Day Sugar Detox approved  recipes.

You can also follow me on pinterest. I created a 21 Day Sugar Detox board along with all of my paleo recipe boards to keep track of recipe ideas.

Wish me luck. If anyone reading this has done the program before, let me know if you have any tips / advice.

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