When considering a sugar detox, the first benefits that may naturally spring to mind are the health improvements you'll achieve, some of which I wrote about in an earlier post here. However, as I've discovered along my own sugar detox journey, there are a number of ancillary benefits that aren't health-related that you can enjoy.
Here are four of the top non-health benefits of going on a sugar detox:
1. You'll learn how to cook differently — if not better.
Don't consider yourself a good cook? Well, if it's one thing that the sugar detox teaches you, it's how to prepare good meals. Naturally you'll be cooking more because it's incredibly challenging eating out or ordering in on a sugar detox since you have less control of what goes into the meals. This translates into an expansion of your culinary repertoire and competence in the kitchen.
2. You'll save money.
This may not seem obvious at first, but cooking at home is easier on the pocket book. We all know — especially those of us in major metropolitan areas — that eating out is expensive and we tend to do it way too much. But how much more expensive is it? Turns out that the average American eats out 4-5 times a week, which translates into around 18 meals per month consumed outside the home.
Ten dollars is what the average American spends eating out for lunch, but New Yorkers, for instance, are anything but average. A 2012 Zagat survey found that New Yorkers dish out around $39 at a restaurant with a whopping total of 49 percent of meals being eaten out or taken out! All of this, according to the US Bureau of Labor, tallies up to around $2,625 being spent on dining out while $3,977 is being spent eating at home per annum. With the proper sugar detox meal plan, I've found that I can eat extremely well for $5 or less/meal —something I'll be highlighting in an upcoming post.
3. You'll forge friendships.
It's amazing the friendships you can build around your dinner table if you don't keep your healthy cooking to yourself. Restaurants tend to be busy, loud, and quite frankly, far less personal. Sure you may pick up the tab as a nice gesture (there goes the pocket book!), but nothing is more endearing than gathering around the campfire, so to speak, and cooking a meal for a friend. After doing a successful sugar detox this summer, and embarking on that journey again, I realize how important it is to include the people whom you love spending time with, not only to help ensure your own success, but also to bring people closer.
4. You'll inspire others with your results.
When you do something good for your health and your life, you'll find that you want to share your story. Whether you have the intention of helping others or not, this will naturally get other people re-evaluating how they eat. Since doing my own sugar detox, I've had countless friends and strangers write and say that they're joining me on the journey. As such, I've asked them to share their recipes and experiences with me and on Instagram with #sugardetoxme so that we can all continue to inspire one another.