Week 4 of the Year of Fear: Stevia and Quinoa

Morgan’s Week 4, Fear # 37: Eat a food you don’t like 10 times

This week I tried a food I HATE 10 times throughout the week. The food in question was quinoa (barf). I have tried to like quinoa; I even wish I did like it since it’s claimed to be so good for you.

I tried it cooked with cauliflower rice and egg (think: refried rice), I tried puffed quinoa cereal with cashew milk and cinnamon quinoa crunchy things (they kind of looked like puffed corn snacks). I even tried quinoa flakes that I mixed with boiling water, grated zucchini, cinnamon and stevia as a make-shift ‘z’oatmeal’. I tried it in as many ways I could think of to give it a fair shot before I made up my mind once and for all how I feel about this “super” grain.

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The verdict: I still can’t stand the stuff! I tasted like dirty grass no matter how I tried to make it. I can definitely say that I gave it a fair shot and that I will not be sorry to see the end of this week’s fear challenge.

Chris’s Fear of the Week: Giving up Stevia in Coffee

For the week, I decided to give up Stevia. I use Stevia quite a lot: in my coffee typically, sparking water with a bit of lime juice, and my morning smoothies, so this week I went cold turkey and gave it up with the exception of my green hulk smoothies and my magnesium drink which is revolting without something added to it.

Like a lot of my fears this was less of a fear than a challenge and putting my mind into an uncomfortable place. I wanted to see how dependent upon it I was and I definitely proved that to myself.

The first couple of days were not as rough as expected. Sometimes I had to remind myself of the challenge because I would reach for the stevia bottle habitually after I poured my morning cup of joe. I did this yesterday and did not notice until I took a sip. I drank it though which I guess you could say ruined the challenge but it was too good of a cup of coffee to pour down the drain.

I would not say I went through detox. I did not get the shakes or headaches or noticed any energy dips or spikes without stevia. It was more a mental switch and expecting things to be less sweet. After a couple of days of drinking things as they were and unadulterated, it was much easier.

August 15, 2017 at 0721AM.jpgI still missed the taste of a good, sweet coffee not because of the sweetness but because of the overall flavor of it. It’s damn good stuff! That is not to say that black coffee is bad. On the contrary, it is equally good, but in a different way. Without the sweetness of Stevia, I was able to appreciate the subtle tones and interesting bitter notes (Can you see my hipster stache growing?) when I drank, which was a good thing but at the same time I pick up different flavors after drinking it with stevia. Both are equally good but different.

I also noticed though that when things are sweet, I eat or drink them much more quickly. After the first bite, my mind gets used to it so I just gulp it down mindlessly. Without it though, I slow down and every bite and sip is like eating it new.

I think I will go back to using Stevia–most likely not as much as I once was and balance out my consumption–but I will definitely appreciate each bite and sip more after the first and just sit and savor.

It was definitely a learning experience this week.

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