30 Day Challenges
Every month I take on a new challenge. And, I have become a huge fan of 30-day challenges. Many people used to ask who would you challenge to. But it’s with myself and they are surprised to hear that. How can a challenge be with oneself and not with others?
Because I challenge myself to bring out the better version of myself. I love to challenge in improving myself. My belief about self-improvement is that when I compete with someone else for the betterment of life, it is nothing but sheer stupidity. How can I have an improved quality of life competing with others? It boosts ego and sense of superiority even though in reality it’s not.
Benefits of 30 day challenge
- Challenges as such boosts self-confidence.
- The challenges are mainly related to self-improvement and so it helps in uplifting the well-being in terms of health.
- Completing such challenges gives a sense of accomplishment.
- Taking such challenges provides a sense of adventure because sometimes it’s all about getting out of comfort zone. And getting out of comfort zone takes some real courage, isn’t it?
The beauty is making the change in one small habit at a time. Taking such challenges emphasize on one particular aspect of life and not everything as a whole. So it is easier to change that particular habit instead of trying to maintain too many habits all at once. Most importantly, I love to experiment with myself and the 30-day challenge is a perfect way to do so. If it’s beneficial, I can continue further and if not, I can stop doing it.
Last Month’s Challenge: 30-Day No Social Media Challenge
Do 30 Day Challenges Suck?
There is a group of people mentioning that such 30 day challenges suck and don’t work well. They’re not beneficial and are too demanding at times. And many more things as such… But do they really suck?
I don’t think so. A few months ago, I took on a 30 day cold shower challenge and later, it became every day cold shower challenge. Since it was during the time of winter, it was very challenging. In the initial days of challenge, it was difficult to keep up with the commitment. But as the days passed, I was habituated with it and I kept on enjoying. The benefits were surely following as well. Once a challenge it was and later it became a part of my daily life.
However, I do agree that they are not sustainable. If I have commitment issues, I am sure not to continue it further after 30 days of challenge. But it’s all about commitment issues, isn’t it? The challenges in themselves don’t suck.
No Sugar Challenge
Starting from the mid of last month i.e. February, I started 30 day No Sugar Challenge. Before starting the challenge, it seemed crazy. As a person who loved drinking tea quite a lot and also the sweets, I thought I couldn’t come across the challenge fully.
By no sugar, I mean no added sugar. Natural sugars found in fruits are okay!
Further reading: My story of Quitting Cigarettes!
Why No Sugar Challenge?
One of my friends told me how addictive added sugar can be. By then, I had no idea about the negative effects of added sugar. I studied and I was completely shocked to know the adverse effects of added sugar.
According to the research conducted by the Journal of Clinical Nutrition and Metabolic Care, Sugar is addictive as drugs and it has drug-like effects as well. It was dreadful to know. Added sugar is no extra nutrient. And amongst all the added sugars, liquid sugar is the worst of all. Liquid sugar easily dissolves in the bloodstream and causes sugar overload which is a risk in itself. Knowing more of the effects made me regret why on Earth was I eating sugar all the time without any second thoughts.
Here are some of the negative effects of added Sugar:
Negative Effects of Added Sugar
- Added sugar negatively impacts immune System.
- Added sugar increases the risk of obesity, high blood pressure and also inflammation.
- High risk of oil production and soreness which in turn can cause acne.
- Insulin resistance which is a risk factor of diabetes.
- High risk of cancer.
- High risk of stress and the chances of depression
- Substitutes important nutrients and develops sugar overload.
- Quick skin and cellular aging process.
- Quick energy drain. Causes spikes in blood sugar.
- Develops fatty liver.
- Risk of damage to blood vessels in Kidney, tooth demineralization, added uric acid levels in the body and impaired memory among others.
According to the American Heart Association, men should consume no more than 9 teaspoons or 150 calories a day of added sugar and limitation for women is 6 teaspoons or 100 calories per day. Do we consume within the limit? Most of us don’t and I was crossing the mark way above.
Also, a research conducted by Northwestern Medicine, over the last 30 years, added sugar is the leading cause of obesity among the Americans. Despite the alarming consequences, it is one of the most underreported and underestimated health risks. Isn’t it a high time we consider this unnoticed subject? Maybe we can’t change the world. But how about considering ourselves? 😊
So, with the very idea, I took a challenge not to consume added sugar. And the No Sugar Challenge became a great idea to know how much sugar I was eating in my daily life.
Further reading: My Year 2018 and Welcoming the year 2019!
Overall experience of 30 Day No Sugar Challenge
First two weeks were tough. I felt like I was missing something really significant thing in my daily life. Later, I felt stronger and stable as well. Before, I used to have emotional fluctuations and mood swings at times. Only after abstaining Sugar, I realized that it’s because of too much of sugar in my body.
Benefits of No Sugar Intake
- Now, I don’t have such emotional fluctuations and mood swings as before.
- Getting away from all of the above mentioned negative impacts of added sugar in the human body. I now need not worry about the frightening aftermaths. Happy me! 😊
- Improved and stable energy level. I can feel the difference now.
- Excluding tea in my meal cycle, I have added more consumption of fruits and vegetables.
It’s not that I didn’t have sugar cravings. I did. But what controlled my yearning was the disastrous consequences I had to undergo. It settled all those feelings and I got to back again. Whenever I had a craving, I would drink a glass of water and it’d fade away.
During the fourth week of my challenge, I accidentally drank a cup of coffee with added sugar. It felt weird to me. And I believe, that was a sign of change in my body. The amount of sugar was way less than what I used to consume before the challenge. Still, it was too much for me.
To sum up my experience with 30 Day No Sugar Challenge, it was all about testing my tolerance and I am happy to have successfully completed it. In the days to come, I am avoiding added sugar as well. If it’s harmful, why consume it just a moment of pleasure? Most important of all, I felt happier about resistance and the benefits I was able to accumulate. Because I was away from all the negative consequences. 😊
Similar Reading: Good and Bad habits!
What’s the Next 30 Day Challenge?
In the next 30 days, I will be challenging myself to become a morning person. I will wake up at 5 AM in the morning. Also, it is equally crucial to sleep on time. So I will sleep at 11 PM which helps me in sleeping early.
Let me know if you want to join as well. Also, let me know if you have any progressive habits that can be tried. I would be grateful. Cheers! 😊