Frequently Asked Questions – Health

Have a question for Unsweetened Caroline? Check out the FAQs below or reach out to us directly!

Why did you stop eating added sugar?

I avoid eating added sugar because in my teenage years, I had constant, uncontrollable cravings. I felt like sugar was controlling me and I was binging several times a week. At that time, avoiding added sugar helped me recover and improve my relationship with food. I now focus on fueling my body instead of focusing on restrictions or calories. I enjoy a variety of foods and don’t restrict my diet. Focusing on having a good relationship with food is much more important than eating a perfect diet.
I want to be clear that I DON’T recommend quitting added sugar. I personally just avoid having them at home because I know what works best for me. I don’t stop myself from having small amounts of added sugar on occasion.

Can avoiding added sugar help with weight loss?

Quitting added sugar is not the solution to losing weight. Changing your relationship with food is. Try not to focus on your weight. Try focusing on feeling well and being happy, no matter your size. Again, I’m a firm believer that the key is having a good relationship with food.

Do you still get cravings?

Yes, I do get cravings. I’m still human! When I do get cravings, they’re typically less intense than they used to be. I’m usually able to satisfy my cravings by eating a piece of fruit, a small treat, popcorn or even a piece of unsweetened chocolate (seriously!). I do eat more than usual some days. The way I see it, those are “normal cravings”. I don’t isolate myself to binge like I used to. My cravings aren’t as urgent and they can be satisfied with less. Eating 2-3 cookies is nothing compared to 12 and more. Bottom line is: I’m not perfect (whatever that is) and I don’t expect to ever be.

How often do you make/eat fruit-sweetened desserts?

I make them weekly, sometimes more, depending if I’m testing a dessert recipe or not. I almost always have no-bake granola bars, energy bites or other treats I’m testing on hand.
I would say I eat one portion in average per day. Sometimes none and sometimes more. As I’ve said before, I don’t restrict myself.

How do you deal with sugar cravings?

I wrote a blog post with my top 22 tips for managing sugar cravings. You can find it here.

Have you ever cheated and eaten something with added sugar?

Again, I don’t like the word cheating. It leads to unnecessary guilt. However, like I mentioned several times on the blog, I’m not stopping myself from eating something with a little bit of added sugar. For example, I still eat SunButter, condiments and store-bought bread regularly. I also don’t stop myself from tasting a bite or two of a dessert Shaun might be eating when we’re travelling for example. I do what works for me and I’ve learned a lot about myself along the way.

Are you vegan or vegetarian?

No, but 99% of my diet is vegetarian and probably 90% of my diet would be vegan. At home, I eat a lot of whole grains, vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts and seeds. I do eat eggs, cheese and yogurt at times. I eat fish or poultry occasionally, usually when I’m at someone else’s home and that’s what they’re making. The only thing I absolutely don’t eat is red meat and processed meats.

What ingredients do you always have in your pantry?

To get a full list of ingredients I keep in my pantry, you can check this page.

What foods do you eat every single day?

It changes from one day to the other, but I tend to always eat a banana, nut butter, oats, seasonal vegetables and fruits, legumes (often chickpeas or black beans) and soy milk.

How many times do you eat per day?

I always eat 3 meals and typically 2 snacks (morning and afternoon). I rarely eat after supper, mostly because I go to bed early enough that I don’t feel hungry. If I do have an evening snack, it would be popcorn while watching a movie (maybe once every few weeks).

What would be your go-to cheat meal?

First, I don’t like the term “cheat meal” (there’s place for treats in a healthy diet). However, I love a good vegetarian pizza. I also like to make popcorn from scratch with a little bit of margarine and sea salt. That’s our go-to treat while watching a movie at home. I also have chips a few times a year.

Do you drink coffee or any other warm beverages? If so, how many per day?

Yes, but it’s always decaf. I used to drink about 2 cups of regular coffee per day, but recently, it started making me feel too anxious and shaky. Now, I drink one decaf coffee in the morning and sometimes a second one in the afternoon. I sometimes drink English breakfast tea or a matcha latte instead. I also like to have warm lemon water for a warm drink in the evening sometimes. For a treat, I like to make my peppermint mocha or hot chocolate.

Can I get a meal plan from you?

I do have meal plans available here, including a vegetarian, vegan and omnivore meal plan. They’re not restrictive or intended for weight loss. I simply developed them to help others shifting towards plant-based diets or looking for meal ideas and nutrition tips!

What do you do for exercise?

I do a variety of things. I recently gave away my car and I now bike to work, which gives me 1 hour of exercise a few times a week. I like to do yoga and a few strength exercises most days of the week, usually from 15-30 minutes. I also hike regularly in our local trails and run occasionally. It changes from one season to the other, but that’s what I generally like to do!

Is there another question you’d like to see in the FAQs? Let me know in the comments and I’ll do my best to answer them!

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