Three Things You Need to Know About Weaning in a Low Sugar Family

Posted on 15/06/2017 by Antenatal Online | Leave a Comment


At the start of 2015, my husband and I decided to give the I Quit Sugar 8-Week Program a try. After reading Sarah Wilsonís book, I felt that it couldnít hurt to attempt the detox, and experiment with the idea of giving up sugar. 8 weeks later, I felt amazing. After weeks of nasty withdrawal symptoms, I had to admit that my supposedly uber-healthy diet was anything but, and the amount of sugar I was consuming in the form of fruit juice, dried fruit, dates, honey, agave, raw sugar and maple syrup was excessive.


2 and a half years on, I havenít looked back. The longer Iíve been off sugar, the easier it has become. Shop-bought and even most home-baked sugary bakes are far far too sweet to me now and are often accompanied with stomach pains and nausea that simply are not worth it. Eating low sugar has lifted my mood, energised me, and cleared up my skin.


The number 1 motivation for me in giving up sugar was my daughter. I was just starting to wean her when we did the program, and I realised I needed (and wanted) to model better food choices for her. And I wanted to start her off on the right foot. When my son was born at the end of that year, I felt much better equipped to deal with weaning as a low sugar family, and the difference was palpable: while initially my daughterís favourite foods had all been fruits, my sonís was broccoli. Why? Well, I put it down to three main reasons:


1.    I ate better in pregnancy


I used pregnancy as an excuse with my first. In morning sickness, I lived off Cheerios and fruit juice, and I figured pregnancy meant I could eat pretty much anything I wanted. But the old adage of ďeating for twoĒ has long been put to bed (we only need about an extra 300 calories in the 3rd trimester and while breastfeeding), and in truth, pregnancy is a time in our lives where eating healthily is even more important than ever before, because what we eat, our baby eats. Now, donít get me wrong, thereís nothing wrong (in life in general), with an occasional sweet treat (I include all free sugars - fruit juice, honey, syrups, etc - in this). But I was eating these things almost daily, so they werenít treats, they were habits. With my son, I made far better choices, which I found surprisingly easy. Morning sickness struck, but I reached for homemade bread, bananas and ginger tea (and felt better for it!). And once I reached the 2nd trimester, I made sure to include lots of vegetables, particularly leafy greens, in my daily diet. I made a big batch of low sugar snacks to keep in my fridge and freezer for when hunger struck, and my extra 300 calories came from eggs, vegetables, a piece of fruit or organic full-fat milk.


2. I ate better while breastfeeding


Initially I wasnít amazing at this. We moved to a new house in a new city and had a newborn all around the sugary Christmas season, and although it wasnít as bad as it used to be, my diet had slipped into some bad habits. But after a mini-detox got me back on track, I ate as well as I could while breastfeeding to encourage my sonís tastebuds to form according to what I ate.


3. We weaned with vegetables first.


My daughterís first food was banana. She moved on to fruit purees and rice cereal as recommended. My sonís first food was spinach. He loved it. And we moved him on to asparagus, broccoli, beetroot and sweet potato (all steamed and pureed at home, served with a tiny bit of oil or butter to help absorb the vitamins) before bringing in any fruit at all. We skipped the rice cereal entirely with him and gave him wholegrains and good-quality protein when he was able to stomach them. Before he was one he had enjoyed chomping through mostly vegetables, a selection of whole fresh (unsweetened) fruits, oily fish and organic meat, organic full-fat dairy and eggs, and a selection of wholegrains. He still eats like this to this day, as we all do.


My children occasionally have a small amount of sugar, but on the whole, we are a very low sugar family and they do not feel at all deprived. They eat well, enjoy their food (particularly their vegetables!), and have been known to choose fruit over cake on occasion. Parties and holidays can be tough (for me, not so much for them), but we have really learned from our experiences, which is why I put together a 7-day e-course on Party Survival for low sugar families based on what we have learned from our own experience and other low sugar familiesí.


But the truth is, although it is never too late to come off sugar, I do believe that the work we put in in the earliest days of pregnancy, breastfeeding and weaning really made a difference, and laid a solid foundation that made it far easier for us later on!


If you are interested in finding out more about cutting back on or quitting sugar as a family, head over to for information, tips & tricks and recipes.



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