It’s not your lack of willpower. If you want to lose weight but are struggling with food cravings, it isn’t that you can’t control yourself or that you hate food that is good for you. It’s simply that your body is suffering from food addictions may not even be aware of.
Here are some easy-to-follow tips to help you stop food cravings:
- Avoid Trigger Foods- The foods you eat are what cause the cravings, so in order to avoid food cravings you’ll have to cut out the foods that result in cravings in the first place. Avoiding those trigger foods can help you establish a different palette, and soon instead of craving a greasy glazed doughnut, your body will want fresh fruit.
- Eliminate Temptation and Give In- Depriving yourself of all your favorite foods can actually make things worse. It’s ok to eat trigger foods as long as you know what your body will do in response. But by keeping yourself under such strict lock and key that all you can think about is breaking the rules, you’ll only make tempting foods harder to resist.
- Chill Out- Your body responds to stress by producing a hormone called cortisol. This hormone has the ability to actually stimulate the appetite especially in women. This response tells your body so seek out carbs and fat, fueling your toughest cravings including those for sweets, croissants and other sugar-based foods. If you are feeling overly anxious and/or stressed take a 20 minute nap, read a magazine or take a short walk to help ease that stress reaction in your body.
- Re-Energize- If you have lingering cravings, you might need to really get to the root of the problem. Emotional and biological triggers may be what is causing your cravings. If you: do not get a full 8 hours of sleep, have low magnesium or iron, skip meals, or do not drink enough water you may be creating triggers that can keep those foods in the forefront of your mind.
- Plan to Avoid- Consider this, a movie theater experiment reported that most participants ate popcorn even though they had already eaten. And the popcorn was stale! The Wansink study showed that participants ate more candy from a dish on their desks than from a desk just one step away. Bottom line is, if the food isn’t right there in front of you, you are less likely to eat it, especially when it comes to those tempting foods like popcorn, and candy. (1)
If you want to avoid food cravings, choosing food substitutions that help develop new habits so you start craving healthy foods instead of unhealthy foods, can really make a difference.
Instead of chocolate; eat nuts, seeds, legumes and fruit to provide your body with the Magnesium it’s craving
Instead of sugar-filled foods; eat broccoli, grapes, eggs, fruit, cabbage, cheese, and sweet potato to provide your body with the Phosphorus, Carbon, Sulfur and Tryptophan it’s craving.
Instead of bread, pasta and other simple carbs; eat chicken, fish, nuts and beans to provides your body with the Nitrogen it’s craving.
Instead of fatty or salty foods: eat milk, cheese, yogurt, legumes, fish and leafy green vegetables to provide your body with the Calcium and Chloride it’s craving.