SWEET TOOTH BE GONE: HOW TO CURB YOUR SUGAR CRAVINGS
Learn How to Curb Your Sugar Cravings Naturally with these Helpful Tips!
Modern humans eat more sugar in one day than our ancestors did in their entire lifetimes. Packed with calories and pleasing to the taste buds, sugar and other sweet foods signal to our body that they are energy-rich and we should load up on their sticky goodness as quickly as possible before the next lion comes along.
This was a good thing for humans when fruit trees bloomed once a year and lions prowled about, but life is slightly different today. With constant temptations of doughnuts here, free cookies there, chocolate and ice cream everywhere, you must fight your natural urges to put anything and everything sweet into your mouth.
HOW TO CURB YOUR SUGAR CRAVINGS
Most women don’t just want something sweet, they crave something sweet, particularly during certain fluctuations of our hormonal cycles. Sugar raises the level of the “feel good” chemicals of dopamine and serotonin in the human body, and sweet foods truly do make you feel better for a while. But the sugar high is short-lived, and what lingers on is the energy crash and the belly fat- two things that most certainly do NOT make you feel better.
So how do you fight those fearsome sugar cravings? Just as nature creates the urges for the sweet snacks, nature can help you tame them:
1. Curb your sugar craving by eating a piece of fruit. Fruit contains fructose, which is still sugar but a natural sugar, and the fiber in the fruit will help balance out the buzz.
2. Curb your sugar craving by trying honey or maple syrup; these natural sweeteners are also healthier for the body than refined sugar, and their viscosity makes it harder to eat so much. Try them on hot and cold cereals.
3. Curb your sugar craving by avoiding artificial sweeteners like aspartame. You may think you are doing your body a favor by chugging a diet root beer when you have a sugar craving- but artificial sweeteners are much, much worse for your body than sugar, and the fake sweet taste of the soda only serves to make you crave MORE sugary things.
4. Curb your sugar craving by staying hydrated. Many times we think we are hungry but really we are just thirsty. The next time you feel a wave of crave, drink a tall glass of pure water first- and see if that helps your need for sweet.
5. Curb your sugar craving by keeping your blood sugar levels balanced. If you don’t eat anything all morning long, your blood sugar levels will drop and by afternoon you will be ravenous and chowing down on anything in sight- especially sweets. Eat small, healthy protein-rich snacks throughout the day so you never feel famished. Remember, the number one cause of overeating is undereating.
6. Curb your sugar craving by eating a healthy diet. Our body craves food because we are lacking certain nutrients and minerals, and your brain might mistake this for a need for sugar. Make sure your diet is full of fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains, and take supplements if you think you might be missing something. Menstruating women should always take a multivitamin that includes iron, and vitamin C has been proven to reduce sugar cravings.
7. Curb your sugar craving by not keeping the devil around.Everyone has their weakness. Superman has kryptonite, I have Oreos, and you may be addicted to rocky road ice cream. Do NOT buy these items and keep them in your house; otherwise you are just one weak moment away from gorge-city. Don’t deny yourself what you really love, just buy tiny packages or enjoy a single scoop of rocky road outside the house. Buying a whole gallon is just tempting fate.
8. Curb your sugar craving by trying a cup of herbal or green tea. The cup will give you something to do, the slightly sweet nature of the tea will please your palate, and the stew of healthy herbs will also hydrate you!
9. Curb your sugar craving by chilling out. Many people eat not because they are hungry, but due to stress or other emotions. Pay attention and be mindful when you eat- are you really hungry or are you just searching for the dopamine in that banana split? Tune into your body and if need be, eliminate some stress from your life with yoga, exercise, dancing or meditation.
10. Curb your sugar craving by giving in! A life of denial is no fun, and the first way to wind up gorging on a giant tub of chocolate mousse is to strike all sweets from your diet. Indulge occasionally on the right things, like fine dark chocolate or a thin sliver of pie. Eat mindfully, and slowly, and don’t waist your cravings on a junk bag of cheap cookies or whatever candy just happens to be around. Eat the sweet you want, and then put the fork down.
Shilo Urban is a freelance writer who has just relocated to Los Angeles after her previous homes of Seattle, New Zealand, Paris, Maine, and Austin. She is an active member of the West Coast electronic music community and lives to promote the art that she loves and the people who create it.