Cultural Shock

Ugggg so grossssss.  Tastes like liquid blue cheese.

Those were my famous first words after sipping plain kefir.


If you think I’m going to relate how much I enjoyed the sweet, savory taste of pancakes drowning in good old fashioned maple syrup, surrounded by bodacious blueberries, surely you’ll be disappointed.
If you’re wondering how I got here, well it started after Pancake Tuesday was mentioned in a conversation with a neighbour. Time to step up to the challenge of 40 days and 40 nights without something that is like a staple in my diet.  I became inclined to take another kick at the can labeled Public Enemy #1 – my sweet tooth.



I’ve battled my sugar addiction a lot. At least one or two challenges a year, sometimes with my clients or friends, annually for the last twelve years to try and reduce or eliminate my sweet tooth cravings. It’s hard to give up something that tastes good but little by little, year after year, seems to have more of an adverse impact on my health. It’s like I play Russian roulette with my health, how far can I push something or get away with something before the point of no return? I could go into an in depth tirade about some of the observations I’ve gathered about this habit but I’ll save it for another day. The longest I ever went without sugar was 30 days back in 2007. This latest challenge was also inspired by some research I’d done a few weeks back, I was looking up associations, connections on an energetic and/or emotional level to things like type 2 diabetes, pancreas and sugar cravings in general. Two things grabbed my attention, one was a distaste for bitterness or bitter things. Relatedly, was the harbouring of resentment(s). The latter is more important, for once I honestly thought to myself “What if I am resentful?” It was very possible and has led to more introspection. In that moment of plausible acceptance of my bitter, resentful aspect of self came something I hadn’t achieved in a while, a small sense of peace. Like, ok, if so, let’s deal with it now and see where this goes. Not saying that this challenge is easier but I have a different sense of calm. Even if I come in at a ninety percent success rate, I break an old personal best!




The difference between yuck and yum = 14 g of sugar.  I think I could still enjoy a tolerance level of 10g of added sugar. Wonder why it’s fourteen???



See those three blueberries on the front of the bottle?  I’m sure that’s all they added because there is absolutely no difference in nutrient values for vitamins or fiber.  Which means the taste difference is solely the added sugar.


The perfect way to get a better dose of sweetness was to add a third of a banana or half cup of fresh pineapple and blend.  Additionally, putting in a scoop of my plant based protein sweetened with stevia made a world of a difference as well.


Why kefir over yogurt?  Was hoping there was less sugar but the benefit boils down to the quantity of bacterial cultures present in kefir(probiotic content is at least 3 times as high) and possible impact on digestion, bloating and replenishing/boosting the healthy flora in the intestines.   I wasn’t able to find kefir using goat milk or coconut milk in my area and that will be a future experiment to be found here.

Post written by Merlin X, former owner of theLOFT Fitness Studio and Splurge Organic Juice Bar.