When you try to lose some weight, one of the worst nightmares is food cravings. If you follow some fad diet (that we do not recommend), the problem is even bigger, as you probably spend your days feeling hungry, angry, and miserable. Nobody said dieting was easy (except for scammers) and if you think you can just wish weight away while you secretly munch on chocolate chip cookies or potato chips, then you still need to learn a thing or two about how reality works. Eliminating food cravings is a process and one you should be mindful about but it should not be about eliminating entire groups of foods, giving up on what makes you happy, or walking around like a murderous monument of starvation. Today we will see how to curb food cravings the healthy, easy way.
1. Mind Your Sugar and Your Meal Plan
If someone tells you to throw away your chocolate chip cookies and go cold turkey on everything sweet, walk away slowly. Our brains function on sugar and hypoglycemia can throw you in a world of hospitalized hell, just as hyperglycemia does. Now, processed, refined sugar should be kept in check, granted, but sugar altogether keeps you alive. If you walk on the brink of malnutrition, your brain will start craving for food.
The hungrier you get, the more likely you are to feed on unhealthy foods, especially the “addictive” ones (mixing sugar, salt, or fats). The easiest way to handle things is to get consistent meals every five to six hours throughout the day to keep your blood sugar stable and lessen cravings. A cookie will benefit you greatly if you eat it at the right time.
2. Mind Your Stress
Many times we eat because we want something to alleviate our life pain. We mostly eat junk foods that make us happy because they boost our serotonin levels just as drugs do. The mechanism is simple: when you are feeling a bit down, or tired or angry, you think that a bagel or a bag of chips will make things better. They do, temporarily, as a boost in carbs, salt, sugar, fat, and other good stuff make us feel jollier by providing us with the serotonin we so need.
If you want to know how to curb food cravings, become more mindful and more self-centered when it comes to your feelings and moods. Do you want to eat something good because you are hungry, or do you want to munch some troubles away?
And, for the love of everything good in this world, get your seven-eight hours of sleep right and some beauty sleep sessions as well. Exhaustion throws your brain into a frenzy and it will not turn down that slice of pie – more than that, it will command you to buy it and eat it whole.
3. If You Have to Munch on Something, Munch on the Healthy Stuff
How many times did you succumb to your cravings and self-negotiated a bag of chips during your diet? Either you were hungry, or you were in need of a quick mood fix, that bag of chips messed with your dietary plan. If you must munch, pick the healthy stuff instead of the unhealthy one. Raw carrots, fruits, raw cauliflower, or some nuts may not equal bagels, popcorn, or chips, but they will fill your stomach, tell your brain it gets good sugars, and keep your unhealthy cravings in check.
4. Drink Water
Sometimes we mistake hunger for thirst. If you feel a sudden crave for food, drink a large glass of water and wait for a few minutes. Chances are your craving will go away, because you were just thirsty. If the hunger does not go away, refer to step 3. If you are serious about dieting, do not put yourself in the position of feeling guilty about those cookies.
5. Balance Your Diet
You may not follow a strict diet and yet you might want to cut back on some cravings. Changing your dietary patterns and making some lifestyle changes will keep you healthy and slim without much effort. Your plate should contain plenty of protein, fibers, and good fats. They will keep you satisfied, well nourished, full, and stable blood sugar-wise. There are probably thousands of excellent dieting recipes mixing eggs, Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, veggies, fish or lean meats, nuts, seeds, oils, and avocados. Fruits and whole grains should also make your list.
6. Get Your Matrix Straight
If modern times programmed us to do anything, it was that you cannot see a cinema movie without popcorn and soda, and you cannot watch TV without some snacks. We are so socially conditioned, that we tend to overlook the fact that we associate even the most ordinary of activities with eating. We eat in front of the TV, we end up eating while we shop, we munch on something when we work at our computers, and so on and so forth.
Surely, you crave for some nachos with your movie, but do you really need them? Are you hungry? One way to fight the Matrix is to realize you live in it. In other words, practice mindful eating. Think about what you crave to eat, when you crave it, and why.
Do not go to the movies on an empty stomach, do not go to the supermarket hungry, feed on some salad before you go out with friends for coffee, understand that we no longer eat to survive, but to comply. Chances are you will cut back on two of the three binge-eating sessions.
Instead of starving yourself and harm yourself by eliminating some types of food in your life, you can get more aware of how your body works and what triggers you to eat. You can also practice some meditation and some weight loss yoga to keep your moods and pounds in check, make some different lifestyle choices, and learn how to curb food cravings the healthy way.
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