Physiology and Accountability

In my last few posts I’ve been covering my efforts to reduce both my sugar and my salt intake. I covered the issue of motivation, and how hard it is to keep up your resolve once you know what you need to do.

One of my suggestions was that it helped to have someone to support you with accountability.

Of course, third party accountability only works as long as we are completely honest with our support person. They can’t – and shouldn’t – be monitoring every bite you take, nor giving you the third degree every time you eat.

So how do they know how well you’re doing, unless you tell them, and how does that work when we often fool ourselves?

Interesting enough I stumbled on an undeniable red flag for me personally; in other words, a nonverbal sign that I’ve been over-indulging in those substances.

Let’s start with sugar:

Recently I was fighting a losing battle with eczema on my hands. No amount of cream, or use of gloves to avoid detergents, really did much in the way of clearing it up. However, a few weeks of the sugar cleanse and suddenly my hands were clear. I didn’t make the connection until I started to allow sugar to sneak itself back into my diet and…you guessed it…back comes the eczema!

I imagine this is something a lot of people with eczema know, but it passed me by in my research. Perhaps I didn’t see what I didn’t want to see.

Now, all my husband has to do is to hold my hand, and the truth is undeniably apparent. As frustrating as the eczema is, I am trying to see it as a positive thing, an external motivator to keep the sugar in my diet as low as I can.

As for salt, I discovered a year or so ago that a high salt diet has an annoying effect on my bladder! Too much salt and suddenly I’m a frequent visitor to the powder room. I can’t get through an eight hour sleep without getting up at least twice to go to the bathroom. And, as many ladies know, we can often suffer from bladder urgency. Nothing like having to stop whatever you’re doing because your bladder is in charge!

Given both these ‘tells’ it’s easy enough for me – and my wonderful, supportive hubby – to keep me honest and in control of my weight.

As much as I want to curse these particular side-effects of two such addictive substances, they do act as both reminder and cautionary yellow light. Maybe not quite a blessing, but not the curse I tend to consider it to be.

Back to putting down that dang salted caramel chocolate bar…::sigh::


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