The 21 Day Sugar Reset Results

Posted 3 April, 2015 by Trish in In the Kitchen / 36 Comments



21 Day Sugar Detox Meal Plan Ideas for Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner

sugar reset recap

Two weeks ago I shared my first week on the Sugar Reset I am doing with Lisa. Saturday is the last day of the challenge (yes, we timed this so we could be “free” on Easter), so I thought I would share my final reflections. If you’re just catching up, this 21-day Sugar Reset was more or less based on the 21 Day Sugar Detox. For 21 days, Lisa and I cut out all processed foods and consumed minimal levels of sugar. You can see more of the dietary specifics on this pin.

Weeks two and three were certainly easier than the first week. I got into a rhythm (more or less) of prepping food ahead of time and had more ideas of what to eat. Though…that doesn’t mean that the last two weeks were without challenges.  I didn’t record every single meal like I did the first week, especially as I had a few repeats, but here is a sampling below. You can tell from the repeated pictures which meal was my least varied.

Sugar Reset Meals

sugar reset meal 2

Breakfast – Scrambled eggs and bacon
Lunch – Sandwich steak with sauteed onions, Greek yogurt, and cucumbers
Dinner – Salad with chicken, avocado, Greek yogurt, cheese, tomatoes, and a touch of salsa


Sugar Reset Meal 1

Breakfast -Fried eggs and bacon
Lunch – Apple with Almond Butter (I was a bad girl the night before and indulged on Margaritas. Paid for it the entire next day…)
Dinner – Steak (from Salt Grass), side salad (which I didn’t end up eating), and steamed broccoli


sugar reset 3

Breakfast – Eggs and bacon
Lunch – Salad with chicken, avocado, Greek yogurt, cheese, tomatoes, carrots, and balsamic vinegar
Dinner – Spaghetti squash with homemade meat sauce


sugar reset 8

Breakfast – Grapefruit and cottage cheese
Lunch – Grilled salmon, green beans, and Brussels sprouts. Probably shouldn’t have eaten the sauce, but meh.
Dinner – Sandwich steak, cucumber with Greek yogurt, roasted cauliflower


sugar reset 7

Breakfast – Omelet with cheese, peppers, and onions
Lunch – Chickfila fail. I thought this cob salad came with grilled chicken. And I didn’t have dressing so I used a tiny bit of theirs.
Dinner – Chicken, bacon, tomatoes, beans, avocado, mozzarella


sugar reset 6

Breakfast – Eggs. I guess? Some days I forgot to eat breakfast…
Lunch – Portobello mushrooms with spinach and mozzarella. So good!
Dinner – Taco salad. This is my kind of salad!


sugar reset 5

Breakfast – Hard boiled eggs
Lunch – Salad with tuna, avocado, almonds, carrots, balsamic
Dinner – Roasted chicken, rice, Brussels sprouts


sugar reset 4

Breakfast – Grapefruit with cottage cheese
Lunch -Turkey with salad
Dinner – Hamburger with sauteed onions, roasted broccoli



  • I’m totally ok with not having sweetened coffee. Just milk (ok, maybe a lot of milk, but still). I don’t think I’ll go back to the Sweet ‘n Low. Even just a plain Latte from Starbucks (rather than my usual caramel) was satisfying.
  • There is sugar in ev-er-y-thing. Seriously, everything. Some mustards. What the heck?
  • I can’t remember the last time I ate this much salad. Maybe ever.
  • Give me a ripe avocado and a dab of yogurt and I don’t even need salad dressing. Ok, maybe a touch of Balsamic vinegar (and did someone mention recently that this is basically sugar? I didn’t read further).
  • When I’m stressed or over the edge I still crave snacking, big time. I had one particularly bad day when all I wanted was cereal for dinner. This was probably the worst craving I experienced. Thankfully Lisa made me feel guilty kept me strong.
  • I feel like I’ve spent quite a bit of money on food the past three weeks. Though I have been very good about not allowing food to spoil.
  • The scale says 6 pounds down. My waist about 1.5 inches (maybe more). I’m wearing clothes that I haven’t worn in quite a while. I’m sure much of this is water weight and I’ll need to be careful if I don’t want it to come quickly back, but it’s a good head start and I love feeling less bloated. I also think my hips feel a little smoother.
  • I feel good! Except I apparently need a better outlet for stress.

Going Forward

  • What am I most looking forward to reintroducing to my diet? Wine. I’ve really missed unwinding with a glass in the evening. I’m also kind of looking forward to cereal, and definitely fruits. Especially now that the summer berries are coming out. I don’t miss bread or pasta at all.
  • While I won’t continue this kind of diet and I don’t plan to cut grains/sugar long-term, I do plan to be mindful of what I’m eating. And try to eat less grains/sugars. Especially the overly processed-sugar added types of foods.
  • Of course eating non-processed food also means more work. The good old battle with time.
  • I’m going to try to pair my carbs or natural sugars with protein–eg Greek yogurt with fresh fruit. Hopefully this helps keep me full and without sugar crashes.
  •  I really need to start strength training.
  • But wine! Though I’m wondering just how sweet my normal bottle will taste to me!

So–have we convinced you to take a look the sugar in your diet? Any tips for limiting sugar-added foods?

Bring on the Easter Chocolate! At least one piece…





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36 Responses to “The 21 Day Sugar Reset Results”

  1. Thank you for sharing! You did great and I wish you the best going forward. (wow does this sound like the most boring comment ever, but I mean it. *smiles*)

        • Hi Christine – I did the reset for a number of reasons–the first reason being to curb some of my sugar cravings. I have an incredible sweet tooth!! I did end up losing about 6 pounds over the three weeks but even better than that I felt really great! After the first week anyway. I’m looking forward to doing another reset in a few months to help kick-start getting into shape post baby. :)

  2. Wow – 6 lbs and 1.5 inches sounds like a success to me and it sounds like this did help your cravings! And, it is depressing how many things sugar is unexpectedly in. I usually try to limit my processed food and refined sugar and white flour, but it’s hard when you’re on the go! Sometimes I end up snacking on the kids’ snacks…bad! I have recently started eating an apple with almond butter for snack (when I have time to actually have a snack at home rather than on the go) and it does a good job of filling me up until dinner.

    • The weight wasn’t the goal, so it was just a nice bonus (and hopefully won’t come rushing back on!), but yes–snacks are SO hard. And part of me thinks “I could make that stuff” but who has time for that?? Apple and almond butter is my new favorite snack, too. Yum!

  3. I really do try to limit the sugar in my diet already but it’s hard if you go out to eat or go to someone’s house. You did a great job – I love the photos of your food.

    • SO HARD! We went to my sister’s one night and the only thing I could eat without cheating was the chicken. The salad had crasins and sugar in the dressing (I skipped the dressing) and she tossed her roasted sweet potatoes with brown sugar. Not to mention the mac and cheese. LOL!

  4. Kay

    You did do a good job and I love the fact that you showed us what you ate. I do see a lot of salads there, but everything looks very tasty. I might have been the one that mentioned that balsamic vinegar is not a regular vinegar. Got that from the Year of No Sugar book I listened to. It has added sugar in the form of grape must (what the heck is grape must – will look it up). The bottle on my shelf said 5g of sugar in a tablespoon. That’s why it reduces nicely to that sort of syrup that is drizzled over caprese salad. The white wine vinegar on my shelf has no sugar. Just interesting info. And, of course, I love balsamic vinegar. LOL

    So, bring on the Easter Bunny!

    • Ha! You’re right–you’re the one. ;) I remember checking my bottle that night when I was making caprese salad and I think it’s because of the grapes. I haven’t had a tbsp in any serving so I’m not going to sweat it!!

  5. I am glad you are happy with the results! I know it’s hard to avoid extra sugars, they are sneaky, but I think the best part of your exercise is being a bit more “conscious” of what we eat. I use MyFitnessPal to try to have a week as balanced as possible and even on days that I eat only “healthy sugars” I might pass my sugar goal, and then one day I did great on sugars but oh boy my fat went off the charts (I had eggs and bacon) but…again, and I know I’m started to sound like a broken record, once you find your balance it’s great. I hope you enjoy all the chocolate coming your way!

  6. I’m glad this worked out so well for you! It really does seem like the largest limiting factor is time (looks like a lot of prep work went into your food…). But goodness, I’d miss fruit and wine. ;-)

  7. Prepping is largest part of this diet. No stopping into Starbucks and grabbing a snack. So hard to find low-carb/low-sugar/high protein options sometimes. Especially when you are sick of eggs.

  8. Sounds like it’s been a success, on the whole! I had to cut out sugar (fructose once — that stuff is in EVERYTHING — and just cane sugar the second time) to deal with food sensitivities. The first time, I was DESPERATE for something sweet. I swear I spent hours googling sweeteners that didn’t contain fructose. It eventually settled down. The second time wasn’t nearly so bad. I’ve definitely reduced my sugar intake hugely since a year and a half ago, when all of this started, and I really don’t miss it. It’s definitely possible! I think it’s a matter of (a) prepping (as others have said) and (b) building up a list of (or maybe reprogramming yourself to think first of) non-sugary stuff.

  9. Sounds like a huge success. Even if you don’t cut out sugar forever (and who would want to?), just cutting down drastically has a huge effect. I know everyone thinks it takes way too much time to cook and prep fresh foods, but I don’t really consider it work (but I don’t have little ones). Cereal: consider making yourself a big batch of homemade granola so you can control the amount of sweetener. I make ours and it’s really pretty easy.

  10. You’re right about sugar being in everything — and it’s really hard to avoid. But it does make a big difference when it comes to weight loss. Congrats on making it through this challenge!

  11. Susan in TX

    Kudos to you for sticking with this long enough to be happy with the results. I never cease to be amazed at how much sugar is added to nearly everything (esp in the guise of corn syrup!). Looking at the different things you ate reminded me of one of my own “substitute” discoveries – the spaghetti squash. That’s one way to cut out pasta in a meal and feel a little healthier in the process which to me, didn’t feel like I was missing anything. I’ve been GF for about 2 years now, and one of my dds found a recipe for making pizza crust out of spaghetti squash. Sounds weird, but it is really good – and much tastier than the avg. store bought GF frozen pizza crusts, which generally taste like cardboard and have zero nutritional value.
    Congrats again! And thanks for sharing your journey (and meal ideas) with us!

  12. You are doing great! Big pat on the back for you, you’re an inspiration! I have found that when you get away from a food item it never quite makes it back into your diet in the former quantities. I haven’t had soda in years now. I got off them for a bit and when I had one after a month or so, it was just too doggone sweet. Now I don’t rent them at all.
    Ooooo, my fav Starbucks used to be caramel too!

  13. Now you have me inspired. It’s funny that I am so inspired while I am pregnant and can’t do this, but of course it’s easy committing to things at times like this. It’s amazing really what all products have sugar. My big thing I want to do is cut processed food. I’m nowhere close to being there but really want to get there. I’d love to make my own bread and not buy any canned stuff, which is a lifesaver for weeknights. Oh well, let the kiddo come out first and then we’ll see how much of these can be done. Congrats to you though! I always love it when I don’t miss some of the “must-haves” in my diet after one of these programs – bread, pasta, most sugar.

  14. The idea of a re-set is a good one! I cut back on sugar and carbs in general and was doing pretty well for a while, but let the creep start and so I could really use a re-set to get my idea of acceptable levels down a little lower again!

  15. You have inspired me to go back on Paleo! I messed up yesterday on the whole 30 caused everything was closed for Easter. gahhh.. oh well. I remember the year that I stuck it out I felt AMAZING!! As time goes on ypu get less and less hungry so food is not as expensive. The only downside is the prepping.

  16. I try modified carbs which I’m back on the wagon with today until Vegas in May. I think the food prep is the hardest, especially with salads. All dressing has something, and for me, if I’m eating salad, I need a good dressing.

    I am so happy this worked for you. I think it’s a good reset and then be conscious going forward. We can all use a reset from time to time.
    I’m proud of you Trish. You are inspiring and I mean that!

  17. Great job!! That’s a huge accomplishment. It sounds very similar to the whole30, which I did last year. Only on whole30, you can’t have dairy but you can have limited amounts of all fruits.

    I’m surprised they let you have regular bacon on this plan! All the bacon I see in stores is super processed with lots of sugar. When I did whole30 I bought some bacon from a butcher that didn’t have sugar, but it was kind of gross.

  18. I’ve just gone paleo again for April, now that all the vacation stuff is over. I cheated a bit on Easter, and I’m sure there will be a few more cheats as I have friends visiting at least three times this month (whoa!). But I really do feel good eating this way, despite prep time. I don’t think I could eat main-dish salads every day though!

  19. Wow 21 days! I’m doing this for 10 days again starting April 20. Thanks for the meal ideas! I know – it’s so crazy how much sugar is in everything. Seems totally unnecessary!

  20. You are quite the inspiration, Trish! I’ve been trying, but haven’t been nearly as successful as you! I gave up Splenda in my coffee and now drink it black. It took a few days to really get used to that, but after trying it once with Splenda back in, I couldn’t drink it. Too sweet! Wish I could say the same for wine. I just can’t give up that treat after work. I usually have a glass while cooking dinner and sometimes a second glass with dinner, but once we started walking after work (before dinner), I was able to limit it to just 6 oz. at dinnertime. I don’t have a tough time with cookies, ice cream, etc., but the hidden sugars are hard to avoid. Keep up the good work!

  21. Emerald

    I really find this interesting and really really need help cutting sugar either out of my diet or mostly out for my health. Any advice that could be given would be amazingly appreciated!!!

    • Good luck!! The first couple of days are the hardest, but then a routine will set in. And if you come across any favorite snacks–come back and let me know! That’s always my trouble spot.