1/7/13 at 12:11 PM 1 Comments

A Week With No Sugar in My Coffee - How Knowledge Plays a Role in Changing Behavior

text size A A A

It's Monday, and I haven't added any sugar to my coffee for the last three days... that makes a week now with my new behavior. On December 31st I wrote why I made a decision to stop using sugar in my coffee.... and I haven't regretted my decision a bit. In fact, if anything, my decision has become more resolute.

On Monday's, I've been accustomed to visiting a Starbucks nearby the YMCA where I help a mens' ministry - that serves the poor and homeless - with a fitness initiative. I typically take in an empty bag in exchange for a free cup of dark coffee. I'll often take in my iPad to read a devotional and catch up on the news, before I head back home.

But part of that experience has included sipping on coffee with cream and sugar. I bypassed the Starbucks today because, for me right now, I don't find drinking coffee enjoyable.

The Importance of Knowledge in Making a Behavior Change

One very important aspect of making a behavior change is to become not only knowledgeable about aspects of the new habit, but also gain insight about why you desire to change the old behavior. For me, this has meant becoming more knowledgeable about what sugar, or sucrose, does to the body.

"My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge." Hosea 4:6

Over the weekend, I continued to become even more educated about the harmful aspects of sugar, as well as high fructose corn syrup. High fructose corn syrup is nearly identical in composition to table sugar or sucrose. When high-fructose corn syrup and sugar are absorbed into our bloodstream, the two are basically indistinguishable by the body. In fact, due to their similar structures, many health professionals agree that whether it’s sugar from corn or sugar from cane, your body can’t tell the difference - your body metabolizes both the same way.

When chronically consumed, sugar and high fructose corn syrup can have harmful, even 'deadly' effects. That's what some research is showing.

Source: Lustig, R. H. J. Am. Diet. Assoc. 110, 1307–1321 (2010)

Knowledge is power... power to make an informed choice. In my case, the knowledge and insight I've gained helped me to make the choice to discontinue adding sugar to my coffee, and to also be much more wise about how I select processed foods that have high fructose corn syrup added to them.

What about you? As you consider making a change in your lifestyle to become healthier, have you taken time to become better informed so that you can be more motivated to make the change?

Becoming better informed, and motivated, will help you sustain your desired behavior.

Have a blessed day!

Helpful Resources Related to Sugar

Comment, the Truth About Sugar, February 2, 2012 issue of Nature - a 3 page PDF document

Sugar: The Bitter Truth, An 89-minute video. Robert H. Lustig, MD, UCSF Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Endocrinology, explores the damage caused by sugary foods. He argues that too much fructose and not enough fiber appear to be cornerstones of the obesity epidemic through their effects on insulin.

CP Blogs do not necessarily reflect the views of The Christian Post. Opinions expressed are solely those of the author(s).