I normally do not particiapate in events like Lent. I abstain for the same reason I do not make New Year's Resolutions: Why do something special at one special time of the year when you could do it at anytime? Also, when was the last time someone actually kept their New Year's resolution for a whole year?
Well in my new spirit of keeping a positive attitude, I decided to participate in Lent this year. After some general thoughts on what I could give up for 40 days, I settled on sugar and artificial sweeteners.
As an aside, I realize that there is sugar (or some manmade equivalent) in lots of different food products. To keep myself sane, I made it a rule that I woudn't comb through the ingredients list to find every small, trace amount of sugar. I would instead refrain from foods where refined sugar is a primary ingredient (Deserts, candy, soft drinks, ect...).
I do not exactly have a sweet tooth, but I do have an occasional Coke or Diet Coke and always take sugar with my coffee. These were the hardest to give up.
Breakfast has also been a challenge (when I do decide to eat it) because almost all muffins and pastries have sugar.
Drinks have also been a challenge. Drinking tea without sugar just isn't quite the same (not to mention that in the South, you rarely have to ask specifically for sweet tea. If you order tea, 9 times out of 10, it will be brought out sweet). Drinking coffee black with no sugar also took some time to adjust to, but now I think I prefer it that way.
It really hasn't been so hard adjusting to no sugar after a few slip ups the first week. I might just keep this going after Lent..... well maybe I will make a few exceptions.