How to Combat Sugar Cravings that Just Won't Go Away
Okay okay okay, sugar is awful for you, I get it. It doesn’t help that it's everywhere, in almost everything, and it feels as though our bodies crave it. I know mine does; I have the worst sweet tooth in the world!
Like most, I am constantly struggling to manage an excruciatingly powerful sweet tooth while trying to eat as well as possible. My goal is not to cut out sweets completely (yours shouldn’t be either if you enjoy them) but to enjoy them in moderation.
As you can guess, this is not an easy feat. However, I have learned a few things along this “sugar in moderation journey” and because I know I am not alone in this I wanted to share with you ways I have learned to cut back on sugar and when to allow yourself to indulge a little bit.
First and foremost, it’s always good to take steps BEFORE the craving occurs.
1. Drink Water:
More often than not I have not had enough water to drink. It is recommended adults drink 8 8oz cups of water a day. That is a lot! It takes quite a bit of work if you’re not a big fan of water (like me). If you’re hydrated and eating full healthy meals, you’ll feel nourished, full, and might not even crave sugar.
2. Eat protein, complex carbs, and healthy fats with every meal:
Like drinking enough water, eating enough of the right foods will fill you up as well. Usually if I start to crave sugar or junk it is because I did not prepare my meals properly that day and allowed myself to become hungry. Once I’m hungry, I want to eat anything and by anything I usually jump right into wanting something sweet.
Drink water and eat healthy meals. Usually this mitigates those random sugar cravings. If it doesn’t and you’re still wanting something sweet, there are a few things you can try.
3. Eat Fruit First:
If the craving starts to kick in, grab yourself some fruit. Fruit has natural sugars that may fill that void. I personally love apples, strawberries, and mandarin oranges. I take fruit with me to work every day because it’s delicious and I love it but also because it’s super helpful if I’m craving something sweet.
4. Control What You Buy:
Everyone always says that if you don’t buy sweets, you don’t have them in the house, therefore you can’t eat them. WRONG! I hate this. I’ve found that if I do not have any sweets in the house I will inevitably become extremely angry, drive to the store, buy a bunch of junk, and binge (just being honest). I always try to have some sort of sweet in the house in addition to fruit. I usually go with Annie’s Homegrown Cookie Bites, Brookside’s Dark Chocolate Pomegranates, homemade energy bites or homemade cranberry/chocolate chip energy bites (Recipe here! You don’t want to pass this one up).
5. Treat yourself:
If you’ve tried everything and you’re still craving something sweet. Treat yourself! You deserve it. There is nothing wrong with enjoying a piece of cake, a candy bar, or anything else every once in awhile. Everything in moderation!
Are you trying to cut back on sugar? What works for you?