Cravings

Mar 08, 2021

Most people experience cravings for specific foods. First, it is important to identify your cravings. Do you crave carbohydrates (breads, pastas, rice), desserts (ice cream, cake, pastries), or fried foods?  Once you identify the craving it is important to learn how to control and prevent them. Cravings can sabotage your diet and increase the likelihood of weight gain. Food cravings typically last up to 20 minutes, but it can feel a lot longer when you are on a diet. The good news is cravings are time limited! For most people, there are times during the day when they are more likely to sabotage their diet and experience a loss of control. If you identify that time, there is a greater chance you can learn to control your cravings.

Preventing yourself from satisfying a craving might feel uncomfortable at first. It’s important to find comforting activities to help break your craving. When you experience a craving drink a large glass of water. Sometimes the brain mistakes the signal for thirst with hunger. Drinking water will help remove unrecognized thirst. Another tool to help reduce cravings is to eat on schedule and not skip meals. This is why it is imperative to eat smaller meals throughout the day!  If you wait long hours between meals, your cravings will be strong and difficult to break. Sleep is also important to combat cravings. The less you sleep the more likely you are to feel hunger and crave certain “unhealthy” foods. Therefore, maintaining a healthy sleep schedule is extremely important!

Stress is another barrier to fight cravings. The more stress you experience the more likely you are to eat “comfort” foods. Out of sight, out of mind is another approach to thwart cravings. If you have “junk” food in the house, you will eat it. If you have to leave your house to get the food you crave, you are much less likely to eat it. If you live with someone who has a junk food consider talking to them about keeping these foods out of the house or in a place you won’t see it.

 
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