One of the most common challenges both myself and my challengers face is SUGAR CRAVINGS!!! You know, the overwhelming feeling of needing something sweet after meals, when stressed and when happy. I guess that covers just about the entire day! And don’t forget the LOVE of sweets! I do love sweets of all kinds, cookies, cakes, ice cream, candy, pies…did I forget any? As you can see dessert brings me joy. However, those sugar demons can bring despair!
So my goal is not to completely banish them from my diet, that would make me sad, but to learn to incorporate them without spiraling out of control. I did a little bit of research. There are the common solutions most of us are aware of:
Get more sleep
Brush your teeth
Eliminate artificial sweeteners
I have tried all of these and they may tame down my sweet tooth for a bit but not for long… Can anyone relate? Below are some additional tips and solutions that I came across. I have not tried them all but am definitely going to explore those I have not! Some include the use of supplements so make sure and discuss them with your physician before trying them to make sure that they are safe for you.
Eat Real Food
This is one strategy I have found that helps. I often crave sweets during the day when I haven’t eaten much real food. And if I crave sweets after a meal if I have another (smaller) helping of real food, I often find that the craving for something sweet goes away.
Get Rid of Sweet Treats!
Common sense says if it is not there you will not eat it. You can’t control all situations but you have control over your own spaces such as your home, desk and car. So banish sweets you crave from these areas.
Healthy Sweet Treats
Have fun trying new foods and make sure that you have healthy sweet treats on hand! Now let’s be real, a handful of frozen grapes isn’t the same as a handful of M&M’s, a chocolate frosted cupcake or hot fudge sundae so search for other possibilities that appeal to you. Don’t get me wrong, fruit is great but make it fun once in awhile! Dip it in dark chocolate and freeze it or make a smoothie. Here is one of my favorite fruit dip recipes, Cannoli Fruit Dip! So good and full of protein and the whole recipe is one red container on the 21 Day Fix Portion Plan!
In my research I came across other strategies that I have not tried but are worth considering. As they include supplements, make sure and check them out with your doctor to make sure that they are safe for you.
Try glutamine. Dr. Julia Ross the author of “The Mood Cure” suggests that a few 500 mg doses of Glutamine per day when sugar cravings occur is enough to chase away sugar cravings in a month or two. Read more here: http://www.foodrenegade.com/how-beat-sugar-cravings-glutamine/ (check with your physician first)
This is often recommended by doctors. Have a discussion with your physician and see what he or she thinks. It is used in insulin regulation of blood glucose. It helps balance blood sugar levels. (check with your physician first)
Protein and Healthy Fats
Consuming enough protein and good fats may help reduce cravings as well as decreasing carbohydrates. Notice I said decreasing, not eliminating.
Plan, Schedule and Eat
Make a plan for what you are going to eat when cravings attack you! And make sure you eat throughout the day. Avoiding intense hunger will help prevent going overboard on sweets.
Give in a Little
Don’t forget to plan for sweet treats. Decide ahead of time what you are going to eat, how much and when. Having a plan definitely helps! Enjoying a “little” of what you love can help. Try to stick to a 150 calorie serving.
Quality over Quantity
If I am going to indulge I want it to be GOOD! So skip mundane treats and go for the fabulous ones such as high quality dark chocolate or a small piece of your favorite cheesecake! As stated above plan for that treat and limit your serving.
Don’t Forget Exercise
Feel good endorphin’s are released when you eat sweets. But did you know that the same endorphin’s are released when you exercise? When cravings arise, get some exercise before indulging. Take a walk, climb up and down stairs, go to your office or rest room and do some squats… These may just help you dodge over indulging!
I have to share that Shakeology has reduced my sugar cravings dramatically. It is a meal replacement but for me has helped to control those sugar demons. They are not gone but less frequent and some days I don’t have any. I didn’t notice this until I had been drinking it (in place of 1 meal a day) for about 3 weeks. Contact us if you want to know more or click on this link:
Just like losing weight and working to maintain a healthy weight, reducing sugar consumption is a lifestyle change. And happily results in better health and weight loss! I have also found that having support from others is priceless! We do offer various challenge/accountability groups throughout the month to provide that support! Just complete the form below. And let us know any tips you have for dealing with sugar cravings and addiction! We are always looking for tips to share.
Hi! This is Donna. I am a grandmother, mom, wife, and a teacher. I also love cookbooks, love to bake and really enjoy food! At age 56 I have developed a love of fitness after losing 46 pounds on the 21 Day Fix! I have always struggled with my weight! When menopause struck and things got totally out of control... My weight only went up not down. My muffin top turned into a bakery shelf. I desperately wanted to lose weight and improve my health. I wanted to be able to play and keep up with my beautiful grandchildren. Nothing I tried worked until I found the 21 Day Fix. Now instead of a tight size 16 I wear a comfortable 8 and even some 6's! At age 56 I am in the best shape of my life. My current goals are to improve my strength and to continue toning my body. I along with my daughter, Danielle, am here to help you reach your own fitness goals! You are never too young or old to become fitter, healthier, and stronger!