I’ll be the first to admit it: I can be a control freak. When it comes to my life, I like things to be put a certain place or done a certain way. Is that a crime? Not necessarily, but it can be a pain in the ass. This is an especially annoying trait when I come across things I can’t control, like the weather, other people’s grammar or the drooling that happens when I come within a 10-foot radius of any type of baked goods.
In college, I would actually change my route to avoid a Girl Scouts cookie table for fear of coming home with a box… Or three. I just couldn’t say no to a nine-year-old with a box of Samoas! (Source)
Despite my type-A personality and slight OCD tendencies (Does anyone else need the TV volume to end in a zero or a five?), my cravings for sweets have almost always gotten the better of me. I’m the queen of swearing off sweets, only to succumb to a late night binge-fest of the closest chocolate-covered something I can get my hands on. But no more!
Emotional triggers aside, one of the reasons I’ve struggled with cravings for so long is because I never knew how to deal with them. Sure, I’d chew sugar-free gum until the cows came home and will my cravings away until my head hurt, but nothing ever worked. Whenever these didn’t work (read: every time), I’d dive into a downward spiral of overeating because I felt like a failure. Though I didn’t recognize it at the time, I wasn’t a failure at all—I just failed to handle my cravings in a healthy way.
Since I’ve started my education at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition, I’ve learned ways to cope with cravings, especially ones related to sugar. Are you ready to work toward overcoming your cravings? Check out these tips to get started!
Reduce your caffeine intake. I know, I know… What are you supposed to do without your coffee fix!? Though it might be a rough ride at first, reducing (or eliminating, for the brave souls out there) caffeine will help with problems like dehydration and unstable blood sugar. Since both of these are associated with sugar cravings, reducing them means reducing cravings!
Eat fruits and sweet vegetables. Debating whether or not to have dessert? Go for it—just make it something healthy! Fruits are a light and healthy way to satisfy a sugar craving. Plus, the more you eat, the less you’ll crave the white stuff!
Find other sources of sweetness in your life. Though you might think you’re craving a slice of cake, sometimes what you really need is a little bit of lovin’! Next time you have a strong craving, try to take a step back and think for a second. What do you really want? Often times, your craving can be satisfied by catching up with an old friend, getting a night of restful sleep or de-stressing with a yoga class.
I hope these helped! The best part about them? They’re healthy.
Do you struggle with cravings? If so, how do you deal with them?