Fed Up Challenge

There’s a new documentary buzzing about a few select theaters in the United States called Fed Up.

Being in the field I’m in, this is something my friends and I chose to go see on one of our first days out of class.  The crowd exiting the theater was buzzing with discussion.  I am going to recommend that you see this movie with an open mind, critical thinking to stimulate questions and discussion and a potential willingness to change what you’ve been doing.  It is well worth the $9 to sit through.

If you don’t want to spend the time or money on it, here are some key thoughts to consider about sugar:

  • It can be put into food under 56 different names like high fructose corn syrup, sugar, xanthan gum, sucralose, honey and agave.
  • Of the 600,000 food items available in grocery stores in America, 80% of them have added sugar.
  • The recommended daily amount of sugar (by the American Heart Association) is 6 tsp for women and 9 tsp for men.  There are 17 tsp in a 20 oz. soda.

The movie goes into the politics of the food industry, comparing it to the tobacco industry of the late twentieth century.  Regardless of where you stand on policy beliefs, I can assure you that extra sugar in your diet will give you a headache of health problems down the road.

So what to do?

The producers of the movie have put together resources and support for a ten day Fed Up Challenge that encourages you to give up added sugar for just ten days.  Can’t be too hard right?  It’s just for ten days!  As you begin to read labels you’ll realize sugar and its sweet cousins are in 80% of what you have available.

Here’s how to start:

  1. Read all your labels – go through the food in your house and toss things that have any of the following ingredients listed.  If you don’t want to trash them because it would be wasteful, put them somewhere off limits for the 10 days.  Things you wouldn’t expect like ketchup, flavored yogurt (even Greek!), granola and salad dressing will be off limits!

    Toss foods with these ingredients

  2. Grocery shop – Print the photo above and take it grocery shopping with you.  You’ll be mostly sticking to foods like fruits, vegetables, nuts (be sure to look carefully at peanut/almond butters – victims of added sugar!), eggs and meat.
  3. Other things not allowed – Coke, even diet.  Artificial sweetners, including Truvia and Stevia.  Flavored creamers (use half and half if you must).  Non-fat and low-fat anything usually have sugar added to supplement the loss of flavor.


I have some family members already on board and into their 10 days, some clients preparing to jump on and after cleaning up a few things in my diet, I’m on board today as well.  Will you join us and see how you can improve the way you feel (look is a positive bonus too) and live?

At the end of the 10 days I’ll post some suggestions for continuing on, or modifying so that some of the foods you miss most can be reintroduced.  Look for #fedupchallenge on Instagram and Twitter to join the thousands others who are taking a stand.  I’ll also review the changes I feel, post recipes of some of my favorite things to fix and discuss how it’s affecting my higher level training.

I hope you’ll join us!

If you’ve seen the movie, what did you think?  If you’ve only watched the trailer, what did you think?


5 thoughts on “Fed Up Challenge

  1. In the last few years, I’ve switched from buying 80% of my groceries in boxes and bottles to 80% of them as produce. In fact, most of my lunches now are largely green with minimal vinaigrette (which would be where I’d get a sugar spike). It’s great! Not only has my weight been almost completely stable, but it helps with my running. And let’s face it, anything that helps with running will instantly become a lifestyle habit.

    I’d definitely watch this.

    • Sounds like you’d enjoy it. I’ll be interested to see how it affects my training given that it’s a leap away from conventional carb-loading wisdom. Only time will tell!

  2. Thank you, Jessica for highlighting this! The movie has not come to our area yet but I can’t wait to see it. I completed the 10 day challenge anyway and am so happy about it! I didn’t stop at 10 days and am still focusing on yet another huge healthier change in my life!

    • That’s great Julie! You would enjoy the movie – I hope you get a chance to see it someday. Will be interested to hear about your continued progress with the raw challenge!

  3. Pingback: Strawberry Avocado Salad | Coach Sprenkel

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