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The Sugar Coated Truth: 3 Confessions from a Triathlete & Exercise Physiologist

By Julia Aimers

My latest “crusade”, as my partner likes to call them, is a crusade on sugar. Recently I read an article written by a heart surgeon who confessed that all those years that he had been preaching to his patients about low fat diets to reduce their risk of heart disease, he was wrong. He describes the process of how it is inflammation caused by added sugars that is actually causing problems for our hearts not just bad trans fats.

My name is Julia, I’m a triathlete and exercise physiologist and I confess, I was a bit of a sugar addict and that my friends is the sugar coated truth!

Confession #1 – I too was preaching low fat diets

Photo source: Philmaffetone.com

Photo source: Philmaffetone.com

Confession #2 – my diet was loaded with sugar.
I started using the My Fitness Pal application which counts your daily nutrients and discovered the sugar coated truth! I was consistently exceeding the recommended grams of sugar per day. A pescatarian, gluten free triathlete who eats too much sugar….who knew? And so the crusade began.

Time to look in the pantry and fridge and see where all this lingering hidden sugar is and exchange it for healthier calories. The no brainer foods are the cookies and chocolates but I continued to dig deeper. The coconut almond milk was traded for unsweetened almond milk, the honey maple gluten free bread was traded for a no added sugar chia gluten free bread, the fruit yoghurt for plain Greek yoghurt with fresh raspberries and yes, the Starbucks chai latte for plain chai tea with steamed milk. The list went on but I was committed to doing this no added sugar crusade for 2 weeks to see what would happen.
sugary stuff
Confession #3 – After 2 weeks, I stopped craving sugar, my appetite dropped and I lost 1.5 pounds.
Hmm… maybe there was something to this. So I continued over three months allowing myself controlled sugar slips on the weekend, and boom! Down 7 pounds!

My weight has never really been a concern to me. Since I was 25 years old, I’ve weighed the same amount, give or take a few pounds: never over weight, never under weight. I have always exercised like a triathlete: 7-12 hours per week and raced successfully over the summer. This latest crusade really wasn’t about weight but about protecting my healthy heart and reducing inflammation; but when I discovered what was happening, I realized that there is something to a low added sugar regime.

I have started trading in sugar calories with my clients and they are having the same reactions. Now I know the results of cutting added sugar aren’t just a fluke. In the coming weeks, I will be going into more depth on the sugar crusade. Follow along on Facebook, Twitter or join my weekly email list for updates. Get inspired to make some great changes in your life! If you would like to start now, I love working with clients one on one. Feel free to shoot me an email: [email protected]

Julia Aimers – Coach
juliaJulia Aimers (BA Rec Admin, Certified Exercise Physiologist) is a NCCP Level 1 Triathlon Coach and Level 2 Technical Road Cycling coach. She has completed her Swim Coaching course and is an Ottawa, Ontario based coach who uses the Total Immersion ™ approach to swimming. To read more about Julia please visit her website: http://www.pbest.ca/team-coach/

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