25 Aug 2017

Quitting Sugar as a family - Book review of three top books

 I recently entered a competition to win a copy of  Sarah Wilsons (I Quit Sugar) latest cook book for children. I won the book and I've been reading it with interest and it got me thinking about how much sugar our children are having and how it was affecting them - this will be in a blog post next week.

Did you know that children only need 5 sugar lumps a day aged 4-6yrs and currently most kids have double that in an average day. Shocking eh!

Anyway back to now, as I was walking through the library last week, these three books were together on a display so I picked them all up on a whim. I had a heavy bag that day. Below are my thoughts on all three books and which if any I'm going to follow.

I'll start with the one I know the least which is a lifestyle and health blogger from Australia, followed by Davina McCall and finish with probably the best known sugar free writer Sarah Wilson.

The Healthy Life - Jessica Sepel

 What's it all about?

 "A complete plan for glowing skin, a healthy gut, weight loss, better sleep and less stress"

My thoughts:

It sounds amazing in what you can achieve and I eagerly dived in once the kids had gone to bed that night. It's a fairly easy read and broken down into sections such as 'Gut' 'Sleep' etc and there are lots of recipes throughout and a helpful detox plan to get you started. I must admit, the more I read, the more daunted I felt as its all a bit hardcore for me. There is a gut cleanse detox to do and lots of eliminations and things like 'Quinoa Sushi' in the recipe section. I felt it just wasn't me and I couldn't see myself committing to this, it would be good for young hipster yoga loving women who have time to dedicate to themselves and create these wonderful concoctions.

 Davina's - Sugar-Free in a Hurry - Davina McCall

 What's it all about?

"Good food doesn't have to involve crazy hard to find, expensive ingredients and huge amounts of time in the kitchen"

My thoughts:

Straight away this book appealed to me, I hear you Davina, I don't want to spend hours in the kitchen and I need something I can feed to my whole family. Reading further, it's simple and easy to grasp the facts with Davina's breezy narrative and non judgemental tone. She understands how hard it is to quit and gently reduces the sugar rather than a cold turkey approach, I flicked through and there are so many good recipes that I could see us all eating, better yet - they also have the calories per serving and as I've recently got into recording my calories on my fitness pal, I found it very helpful. Since taking this back to the library I have purchased her original 5 weeks to Sugar Free and Smart Carbs books which I'm starting to work through. I'm hoping to share some of my recipes on here (on a Friday) so keep your eyes peeled.

I Quit Sugar - Sarah Wilson


What's it all about?

"Take a let's just see approach and it will make the process less onerous"

My thoughts:

I immediately felt relieve that Sarah admitted it took her a couple of months to actually quit sugar, she breaks it down week by week and tells you what to aim for and gives ideas on what recipes to try. I found it daunting reading at times, especially as she suggests eliminating all fruit to start with and also some of the ingredients she uses are not that easy to come by in our local Tesco. There are a staggering 108 sugar free recipes to try and great suggestions on living better but I still found it hard to see how I could incorporate this into my hectic life and into my picky children's diet. Things like 'Sausage, Walnut and beetroot Hash' didn't appeal to me and as for a 'courgette cheesecake' I think I'd end up reaching for the doughnuts too quickly. However I do think I'll be trying her kids recipe book and will put a review on here soon.

Final thoughts... I'm going to give Davina's books a go and I'm going to follow the principles but I don't think we will go fully sugar free. To be fair, we do 98% of our cooking from scratch and don't use any processed meals or sauces so it's not that difficult of a transition but it's snacks where I fall down so it's there that we will be focusing (as well on an overhaul on the children's diets).

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