Beating Your Food Cravings

The average person begins a weight loss diet with the best of intentions. However, these good intentions can easily be sabotaged when the food cravings begin. Are you trying to lose some excess weight? Are regular food cravings threatening to undo all of your good work? If you are struggling with your weight loss diet, read on to learn how to beat those food cravings into submission.

Watch the Clock

Fortunately, food cravings eventually pass. The average food craving lasts for between eight and fourteen minutes. If you can wait that long without giving in, you will probably succeed in beating the craving. Hence you might find it useful to purchase a stop watch. Start the stop watch when the food craving commences. Set the timer for fifteen minutes. If you can resist the craving for fifteen minutes, you should find it gives you a feeling of control and empowerment. These positive feelings should make it easier to beat the next food craving.

Healthy Snacks

Most people find that their food cravings generally occur at a specific time of day. When you have a food craving, make a note of the time. If you know when your cravings generally occur, you will be able to prepare a healthy snack in advance.  It is a good idea to choose a snack that you find satisfying.  Try something that contains protein such as a low fat yogurt. If that doesn’t work, next time choose something that contains complex carbohydrates.

Hydration

It is easy to misinterpret the signals your body is sending you. For instance, you may think you’re hungry when you are actually dehydrated. Therefore you might want to try drinking a large glass of water whenever your food cravings strike. Drinking plenty of water helps because it tricks your brain into thinking that your stomach is full.

Sufficient Sleep

If you do not get enough sleep at night, you will lack energy the next day. This lack of energy will make you feel hungrier than usual. That’s because your body looks for ways of replacing the lost energy. If you want to reduce food cravings, you should aim to get eight hours sleep each night. You can regulate your sleeping pattern by going to bed at the same time each night, and setting your alarm clock for the same time every morning.

Empty the Cupboards

If you do not have any fattening snacks in your home, you cannot succumb to the temptation of eating them. Therefore you should seriously consider getting rid of all the foods that are likely to tempt you. That means you need to search your cupboards and refrigerator for cookies, cakes, ice cream, chocolate, and anything else that contains lots of sugar or fat. You can either throw these snacks into the trash can, or give them to someone who is not on a diet.

At the Supermarket

There is no point throwing out all of your sugary and fatty snacks if you end up replacing them the next time you visit the supermarket. When you are food shopping, you should avoid walking down the aisles that have tempting snacks. Instead, look for the healthy alternatives. Healthy food products usually have clear labels showing that they are a smart choice. Hence finding healthy snacks to eat is not difficult.

Find Distractions

What are you usually doing when your food cravings strike? People who are dieting often find that their food cravings occur when they feel bored. If boredom makes you want to eat fattening snacks, you might want to find something to distract you. For example, you could read a book or play a computer game. Do whatever it takes to stop you from thinking about food.

Avoid Stress

Many people find that eating the foods they like best provides a feeling of comfort during times of stress or anxiety. If you are inclined to comfort eat, you might want to find some effective ways of avoiding or eliminating stress.  Regular exercise can help diminish stress levels, and it also augments weight loss efforts. Meditation and yoga are also good for beating stress. You should always include time in your schedule for the activities that help you relax. 

Portion Control

If the temptation gets too much and you end up giving in to your food cravings, try to control how much you eat.  For example, you could limit yourself to one or two hundred calories worth of your favorite snack. Sometimes eating just a little bit of what you fancy is enough to stop the craving without ruining your diet.

Don’t Give Up

There may be times when you give in to your food craving completely. If this happens to you, do not despair or think negative thoughts. Loathing yourself will not help you to lose weight. What’s more, giving in on one occasion does not mean that you have failed. If you give in, remember that tomorrow is a new day and you can continue with your diet efforts then.