CRAVINGS! UGH! Let’s face it, we all have them and we rarely crave kale or boiled chicken! We usually crave sweets or overly salty and fattening foods, you know, the yummy stuff we really need to avoid or at the very least eat in moderation. These intense cravings can sabotage even the best diet or weight loss plans. Triggers and stress or even just poor preparation can lead to you succumbing to the temptations. So what can we do to avoid potential unwanted weight gain from giving in to cravings? Try these effective tips to keep you on track.
8 Great Tips to Conquer your Cravings!
1. Drink water. A refreshing glass of water can help you feel full and satiated. Keep a water bottle with you and refill it often during the day.
2. Plan out and prep your meals. Avoid spontaneous and “fast food” eating by prepping your meals. If you have a specific time of day you are prone to cravings, have a little protein snack during that time-be prepared for it.
3. Eat Protein. Some studies show eating protein can help reduce your appetite and keep you satiated for longer periods of time.
4. Keep a good schedule and avoid getting overly hungry. This is back to meal prep and planning and always having access to a healthy snack option. Don’t go long periods of time without eating. Feeling like you are “starving” can push you into making poor food choices.
5. Get a good night’s sleep. Tired, moody, sluggish-these feelings can trigger poor eating.
6. Keep your stress at bay. Cortisol has been shown to increase food cravings and overeating. Find a stress relieving activity and take care of yourself.
7. Exercise! You can physically get away from the temptation AND trigger your metabolism with some healthy movement.
8. Avoid or do something contradictory to eating: chew gum, brush your teeth, take a walk, call a friend, take a shower, get out of the kitchen; do an activity that makes eating impossible.
Remember, we all experience cravings. With some patience and some behavior changes, we can handle them. At first it may seem difficult to resist, but using these tips can really help you avoid and mitigate your cravings. Finally, if total avoidance and abstinence from eating to satisfy your craving seems impossible, the trusted adage of “everything in moderation” is great advice!