A big challenge for all dieters is to say no to sugary foods. Here are some tips to help you gain control over your sugar cravings.
Sugary foods are capable of transporting us to a happy state of mind, unlike any other foods. Experts say this is because sugar stimulates the release of serotonin, a happy hormone, and substances called endorphins that promote a sense of relaxation.
In fact, we humans are hardwired to crave sweets from the moment we are born. Once we indulge this craving, it’s hard to stop wanting more. But eating too many sugary and fatty foods is responsible for the obesity, that pre-disposes us to diseases such as diabetes and cancers.
So, work on limiting the sugary foods and drinks you consume, using the ploys below.
#1 Drink water
This is the simplest and most effective way to beat sugar cravings. Drinking two glasses of water induces a feeling of fullness, helping you overcome your urge to reach for sugary and fatty foods.
And staying hydrated throughout the day by drinking at least 8 to 10 glasses of water, is a good strategy in general.
#2 Eat regular meals
A big gap between meals leads to irrational eating behavior. So eat small portions of protein and fibre rich foods that are calorie dense, every 3 to 4 hours. Also, make sure your meals are nutritionally complete, so you don’t have any vitamin and mineral deficiencies.
A shortfall of nutrients induces all kinds of cravings. If you feel like having a snack, make a healthy choice such as a low fat smoothie, sprout salad, poha, or Greek yogurt.
# Eat some fruit
The healthiest form of sugar can be obtained from fruit, so reach out for a portion of fruit when the sweet craving hits. Keep apples, bananas, oranges, and other seasonal fruits handy. Besides being full of nutrition and fibre, they impart a sense of satisfaction and fullness. Or, go for a handful of nuts to curb your sudden hunger pangs.
#4 Get enough sleep
Getting enough sleep is essential for a healthy body and mind. Sugar cravings and hunger are often linked to tiredness. The lack of sleep disturbs the body’s hormonal balance, intensifying cravings. So do whatever it takes to ensure you get 8 hours of sound and deep sleep daily.
#5 Reduce stress
Habitual stress takes a toll on the health. The link between over-eating and emotional distress has been well-established; many of us reach for chocolate and ice-cream when we are feeling low.
So, learn to manage your anxiety through means such as meditation, regular exercise, yoga, and other therapies. Aside from helping you feel more in control of yourself, you will also end up making healthier food choices.