Beating Those Food Cravings - Excell for Life

Beating Those Food Cravings

We all have them — times when you just HAVE to have something sweet, or salty, or crunchy, or all of the above!  It’s especially hard to resist when holidays or times of celebration occur, when everyone is anxious to share food and try out tasty new recipes.  And it’s spring—a time when many of us are trying to get back into better shape for warm weather clothes.  So other than sheer willpower, what can we do so that we don’t cave to the cravings? Here are a few tips to help you beat the urge to overindulge!

Drink your water!

We are all supposed to be drinking half our body weight in ounces per day.  For example, if you weigh 140 pounds, you should be drinking about 70 ounces of water a day.  Many times we think that we are hungry when in reality it is our body’s thirst that we are feeling. Try always going for a glass of water first before eating.

Think before you eat.

Try to be sure that the calories you consume are really worth it.  Think also about your weight and health goals.  I have tasted food that looked really good but the “taste reward” was not great and therefore, not worth the calories consumed.

Protein:

Make sure you are getting enough protein in your diet.  This will help you to feel fuller and more satisfied for longer periods of time.

Fiber:

If you are having a hard time shaking a craving, try to find healthier alternatives that will satisfy you. Good quality fiber like our Fiber Plus powder is a great, easy way to support blood sugar balance and reduce cravings! Add Fiber Plus powder 1 scoop to a large glass of water 2-4 times a day is easy and is so great for your digestive system as a prebiotic!

Sweet / Flavor Cravings:

A great product that has helped so many of our patients reach for to “cure their sweet tooth” is diaxinol. Diaxinol is used to maintain balanced blood sugar levels. This product helps those with insulin resistance also.

Adding healthy foods to your diet like Greek yogurt for sweet, an apple for crunch, or salsa for salty helps curb cravings.  And speaking of apples, they are a great way to cut down on cravings.  They are full of a fiber called pectin, which can help to regulate blood sugar. Buy organic apples so that you can eat the peel, which has lots of this pectin in it.  Just try eating an apple for a snack and you will see what I mean!

Minimize your stress.

  • Take 20 minutes in your day to pray, meditate or do yoga.
  • Get enough sleep—try to go to bed at the same time every night and try to get 7-8 hours of sleep a night.
  • And if it’s late at night, stay out of the kitchen and go to bed.  Don’t eat your emotions!

Wait out the cravings.

Distract yourself.  Take a walk, pick up a book, or play with your kids.  An added benefit– playing with your kids is good for them as well!  Go outside and get some sunshine!  Regular exercise can also play a part in controlling those cravings.

Set a timer. Often times if you wait about 10 minutes before indulging in that craving, you will find that it is not as strong after all.

Avoid grocery shopping when you are hungry.  Your stomach will bypass all of your brain’s best intentions if you haven’t eaten in awhile, and you will be more susceptible to buying those cookies.  If you must be in the grocery store when you are hungry, eat a protein bar or a piece of fruit to help with self-control.

Find a baseline.

Keep a food journal. My Fitness Pal is an awesome way to track what you are eating with the ability to track how many fats, carbs, and protein you eat and helps you to plan meals to get a more optimal balance. Many health coaches use this to really motivate and help their clients! Sometimes just the thought of having to track or write down what you are eating is enough to help us get past a craving. Reviewing your food journal is a great way to help recognize eating patterns and the triggers that make us consume more than we actually need.

It’s best to not deprive yourself completely. Many times if we don’t allow ourselves an occasional treat, we end up bingeing on something high calorie.  By allowing yourself the occasional treat, you can satisfy a craving.  I have a friend who keeps a very strict diet during the week, but on Sundays she allows herself to have dessert.  She has found that this plan really works for her.  Find what works for you and stick to it!

Happy Easter and blessings to you!
Nurse Anne

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