On my nightstand is Joanne Chen's book entitled The Taste of Sweet. The subtitle is great: "Our Complicated Love Affair With Our Favorite Treats." How enticing!
Sugar is my life, or so it seems. I have to check my blood "sugar," count carbs/aka "sugar," and when I'm low, think about what I can consume that contains enough "sugar" to bring me up.
I'm only about one-third of the way through the book....but I'm lovin' what I'm readin'. Check out some of my favorite excerpts:
from pg 80
"Where does the power of dessert come from? The answer lies not only in its tastes and textures, [. . .] it also lies in the more mystical elements---the heart that's put into creating a dessert from scratch, for instance, and the conviviality that comes with enjoying it. You can't just fold up your napkin and walk away from that. In a small way, our notions of the perfect dessert are windows into our soul. It taps in to the natural tendencies and secret desires we all share, and cajoles us into putting them in plain view for all to see. That, to me, is the real reason why we think desserts are dangerous. We like being in control, but they won't let us."
from pg 85
"It is human nature to be attracted to people and things that aren't exactly good for us, and dessert, as we've learned from a very early age, falls into that category. [. . .] When Manhattan restaurant consultant Arlene Spiegel added descriptions such as 'sinful' and 'decadent' to the names of certain desserts on a menu, sales tripled in one night."
from page 93-94
"Age-old customs concerning sweets hint that dessert isn't simply about food. It's about following shared rituals and traditions that we can't help but come back to time and again---the wedding cakes, the birthday cakes, the strawberry rhubarb pie at the church picnic, and the funnel cake at the county fair. We all have a bit of nostalgia in us, and desserts play to that."
What I admire about Chen's writing style is her ability to weave personal stories, statistics and examples, scientific elaborations, humor, and, yeah, sweetness, into one fluid book. In her chapter "Always Room for Dessert," Chen breaks down the digestive (and yeah, how carbs work and how insulin SHOULD work---haha) system and explains that even though we might be full, our brains "hungers for food that fulfils a sensory-specific satiety (83)."
I know all about that!
I encourage you all to order a copy of this book from your local library or head to the nearest bookstore. Even though this isn't a book focused on diabetes, Chen has helped me realize a lot about myself and my "complicated love affair" with my "favorite treats."