Combating Cravings Before They Strike
For many of us, cravings are the hardest part of avoiding certain foods. It’s hard to say no to that little burst of sugar that promises to get you through to school pick-up, or that shiny soft drink can that will make your afternoon meeting more manageable. Thankfully, there are a few things we can do to try and minimise the cravings.
Eat more protein
The key to stabilising sugar and insulin levels is to include protein in every meal, especially breakfast. If you refer back to the dinner plate we saw in week one, you’ll notice the recommended serving of protein – a palm-size. Nuts, seeds, eggs, fish, chicken or grass-fed meats are easy to incorporate into your diet.
Fat doesn’t make you fat, sugar does. In fact, healthy fat slows down the absorption of glucose and prevents sugar highs and sugar crashes, helping us feel full for longer. Try to include a tablespoon of fat with every meal. Extra virgin olive oil, coconut butter, avocados and sardines are some common examples of healthy fats.
Tip: Eating a teaspoon of coconut oil after each meal helps with sugar cravings especially in the first few days of the program.
Eat the right carbs
Eat an unlimited amount of the right carbs. Did you know that vegetables are carbs? Go ahead and eat all the non-starchy vegetables that you desire – broccoli, cauliflower, kale, asparagus, mushrooms, zucchini, fennel, spinach and artichokes – just limit the amount of starchy vegetables such as potatoes and sweet potatoes.
Cinnamon not only tastes great but it also helps regulate sugar levels. Why not sprinkle some cinnamon powder over your golden milk latte, coconut hot chocolate or toast with almond butter. All these simple and delicious recipes can be found in the meal plan.
Combating Cravings Once They Strike
Regardless of how much cinnamon, kale or avo you eat, you’re bound to have a craving every now and then. Whether it’s something sugary, fatty or salty, the craving will usually pass as quickly as it came about. The problem for most of us is that we often don’t allow ourselves that extra 30 minutes for it to pass – we’re quick to satisfy the craving. To continue to make good food choices, consider dealing with the craving in a different way.
Snack on protein and fat
It’s always a good idea to have an emergency stash of snacks ready for when a craving hits. Snacking on protein or healthy fats helps you stay fuller for longer and helps stabilise blood sugar levels. Easy (and delicious) snacks include:
- Nuts and seeds – macadamias, almonds and pumpkin seeds
- Apple slices with almond butter
- Tin of wild fish such as sardines
- A couple of slices of avocado with lemon juice
- A boiled egg
A great way to soothe the nervous system is with water and water-rich foods such as fruit and vegetables. Your body is made up of 60% water. If you’re not drinking enough water then you can feel tired, crave sugar or feel anxious. Try to have plenty of water between meals, rather than with meals. Too much water whilst eating can lower your natural stomach acid levels and might cause indigestion.
Take a walk
It sounds cliché, but a short walk will always help you curb the craving. A fifteen minute walk will increase oxygen and blood flow, make you feel good and, most importantly, remind you why you wanted to take this mindfulness journey in the first place.
Use a natural remedy
If combating the craving is starting to wear you down completely, consider purchasing Sugar Stop http://theorangepantry.com/product/sugar-stop/– a pleasant tasting liquid formula made up of completely natural ingredients that have been traditionally used for centuries to ease cravings and help self-soothe.
Learning to manage cravings is, like most things in life, something that becomes easier over time – do it the first few weeks and suddenly it becomes a habit.