Do you ever feel helpless to your sugar & carb cravings?
You walk into the grocery store with the best intentions and then you walk past the bakery and the smell hypnotizes you, or you’re standing at the checkout line and the candy bars scream your name?
Maybe you grew up having ice cream after dinner and you can’t imagine not having something sweet after your meal.
Or perhaps you are in the middle of a project and you find yourself staring at your pantry even when you know you are not hungry so that you can feel better? Can you relate? You are not alone.
The above scenarios are not random.
They are my own personal experiences.
As a child, I don’t remember ever having any cravings that made me feel out of control.
But as I got older, things changed.
I started to feel like I had NO CHOICE and sometimes, I knew I was emotionally stuffing my feelings. Other times, it felt like my body was seriously craving carbs and sugar.
As a health coach, the #1 struggle my clients have is dealing with cravings.
We all know that the quality of the food we consume greatly affects how we feel, our weight and of course, our overall health.
But have you considered that beyond the nutrients, there are OTHER factors that influence our cravings?
What I've found throughout my training and experience was there are 3 main reasons why we have cravings, and nutrition is only 1/3 of the equation.
Identifying why you are having a craving can be very frustrating.
Sometimes it can feel like they come out of the blue, and others you can see the signs of stress. Your brain is saying NO, but your body screams YES!
Through my training and experience, I discovered that our cravings are a SIGN that we are OUT OF BALANCE in one area of our life.
This can be attributed to a nutritional, emotional, or even physical imbalance. Food is connected with memories and feelings so there is an emotional component that can OVERRIDE logic or reason.
And, as we age or have low nutrients in your body, our cravings are HEIGHTENED.
This is NOT about eating "perfectly," or depriving yourself of anything sweet or savory. The key is that it is a CHOICE that you make when you are feeling hungry or you decide you want to have a treat.
Feeling out of control and frustrated with your food choices is only going to make you spiral more.
Below is a list of food swaps that will help avoid the sugar roller coaster and keep the munchies away!
Here are my top 7 Food Swaps to Crush Your Food Cravings
1. Coconut Water vs. Diet Soda
When you start to get tired in the afternoon, instead of reaching for a diet coke or a sugar-filled Frappuccino— drink coconut water.
Coconut water quenches your thirst while adding a hint of sweetness and will give you longer-lasting energy than any junk-filled "energy" drink. My personal favorite is Harmless Harvest. I don’t know what I love more; it’s pink color or it’s yummy taste.
2. Greek Yogurt
By having a Greek yogurt with fruit on top— not only are you fueling your body, you're also increasing satiety (feeling full) so you're less likely to indulge your cravings.
Add some chia seeds and blueberries on top and you are setting yourself up for success! Look for organic plain varieties that are not sweetened.
If you need to sweeten it up try adding a touch of honey.
This will satisfy your sweet tooth while putting you in control of the amount of sugar added.
2. Trail Mix
If you are craving something crunchy or salty reach for some nuts or trail mix!
The protein and healthy fats from nuts like cashews, pistachios, pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds help fill you up, while the sugar from dried fruit like cranberries helps to hit that sweet craving.
It’s very easy to overeat with nuts and trail mix. So, I recommend pre-measuring out a handful and putting in a bowl. I get my raw nuts and trail mix at Sprouts and even Aldi has some healthy alternatives as well.
Yes, it's possible to eat chocolate and still be perfectly healthy, lose weight, and maintain your health goal.
The trick is to choose a higher quality chocolate that has healthy fats and low in sugar. Oh, and only have a few squares— not the entire bar. 😜
A few of my favorites: Endangered Species, Alter Eco, and Green & Blacks.
Organic popcorn is an excellent choice to curb those salty cravings and a low-calorie snack.
Upgrade to organic varieties to avoid GMO’s and opt to buy the kernels and pop them in a saucepan or air-popper yourself. If you are running out of time, and want to grab something on the go, I recommend Boom Chicka Pop.
5. Frozen Grapes
This is one of my favorite ways to indulge.
Simply freeze your grapes and enjoy!
Be sure to eat them frozen and don’t let them thaw out or they will be squishy, & not quite as enjoyable.
6. Chia Seeds
These amazing little seeds are high in magnesium, which is an essential nutrient to combat cravings.
Concentrated in healthy omega-3 fatty acids, carbohydrates, protein, fiber, antioxidants, and calcium, they are an unprocessed, whole-grain food that can be absorbed by the body as seeds (unlike flax seeds).
I use them in my smoothies, oatmeal, yogurt, or even in desserts.
For chocoholics (like me), add some raw cacao and boost your antioxidants!
7. Green Smoothies
Greens are awesome because of the fiber and micronutrients that they offer your body. When you blend them in a smoothie, your body absorbs them much quicker than eating a salad, so you get a boost of energy and avoid the sugar roller coaster.
Here are a few of my personal favorites.
So, there you have it!
When you fuel your body with the proper nutrients, get plenty of rest, and practice mindfulness throughout the day then you will reduce your cravings.
However, the other aspect is the EMOTIONAL component.
Identifying WHY you do what you do is the part that is so tricky.
That is why I developed 5 Simple Steps to Beat Sugar & Carb Cravings Forever.
If you already feel confident with what you are eating, but you’re still struggling with CRAVINGS or not seeing the VISUAL RESULTS you want,
Sign up for my free group coaching experience: 5 Simple Steps to Beat Sugar & Carb Cravings Forever
In this webinar, you’ll discover:
This is a PERSONALIZED webinar so space is limited. Reserve your spot today!
I’m curious, do you experience cravings and how do you handle them? What are your favorite food swaps?
I’ve discovered a unique, fascinating way to embrace your cravings without guilt or depriving yourself of chocolate.
5 Simple Steps to End Sugar & Carb Cravings Forever