Have you ever had this urge during weight loss? You especially want to have a portion of certain high-calorie food and can’t help it, really want it. Don’t blame yourself, it’s not a matter of your willpower. Most likely it is a dietary problem.
So, what should you do then?
Today I share 9 effective, evidence-based ways to manage food cravings.
1. As soon as the craving pops up, give yourself a set of small tasks that you can do right away, such as: calling a friend, listening to music, watching a movie, chewing gum, taking a bubble bath, Distracting yourself by reading a favorite magazine, or going out for shopping, etc.
2. When feeling hungry, the body does not know whether it is thirsty or hungry. When the body is deficient in water, it is easy to crave high-salt foods (such as potato chips). This “craving” is actually “thirsty”, a cup of water can successfully stop this craving for food.
3. During the day, check whether you want to urinate every 1 hour. If the time interval exceeds 1 hour, it means that you are not getting enough water, and you may want to eat a lot.
4. Do not go without food for more than 5 hours. If it exceeds 5 hours, the blood sugar in the body will drop a lot, and it is easier to crave high-sugar and high-fat foods.
5. Eat some protein (eg eggs, fish, meat, etc.) at every meal. Compared with carbohydrates, protein is not only more satiety but also can better control blood sugar stability (rather than high and low fluctuations), thereby reducing the generation of “craving” desires.
6. If you can’t help it before it’s time to eat, you can eat some healthy snacks such as fruit, yogurt, and a few nuts to ease your hunger.
7. You can arrange a special “indulgence day” every 7-28 days according to your own characteristics. At other times, once there is a high-calorie food you want to eat, write it down and wait until that day to eat it, delaying gratification.
8. If it’s night, you can brush your teeth with mint-scented toothpaste, then apply a little lip balm to give yourself a “sealing ritual”, so that you don’t want to spoil it with heavy-tasting foods high in sugar and salt, Your food cravings will be significantly reduced.
9. When food cravings strike, go out for a walk or trot or hit the gym. Fresh air and a good sweat will also help you quench your cravings for high-calorie foods. Many people think that they will eat more after a workout, but the opposite is true. A British study showed that when experimenters refused food intake, ghrelin levels increased, while levels of the hunger-suppressing hormone peptide decreased. At this time, if you do some low-intensity exercise, it will drive away the hunger, and you eat after a workout, but eat less than those who do not exercise.