Tips to Curb Cravings

What you put into your body can determine how you think, feel, and act. Controlling your cravings with healthier foods can not only help you lose/maintain weight, but also make you feel better overall. Healthy foods give you energy by providing your body with necessary nutrients. 

When your body craves a certain food, it usually means that it is lacking something that it wants or needs. Cravings happen often when following a restrictive diet, which can lead to overeating and guilt. Eating a balanced diet that allows you to enjoy foods that you love in moderation can help you control your cravings and overeating. 

Here are a few tips to help you overcome unhealthy cravings. 

Plan out healthy meals for the week
This will help you keep track of what you are eating each day, which leaves fewer opportunities to choose unhealthy meals.

Find a new hobby
Taking your mind off of your food cravings by picking up a new hobby can be a great way to be productive and find new interests. Hobbies or pastimes can include joining a recreational sports team, reading, knitting, yoga, etc. This will help you focus your energy on other activities besides whatever you’re craving. 

Write down what you are craving and why you are craving it
This will help you understand whether your cravings are because of strong feelings or your current situation or environment. Maybe you tend to crave salty foods when you have a packed schedule, for example. This information can help you in the future through developing a better understanding of your cravings, and how you can overcome them. 

Keep healthy snacks handy
When you are having a craving or think you are hungry, it is great to have healthy snacks available. If you’re hungry enough to eat a full, balanced meal, then definitely do so to meet your daily nutrient requirements. However, if you are hungry because you are bored, then grabbing celery sticks, cucumbers, or other veggies can be a great way to curb your hunger and stop you from overeating.  

Put the unhealthy snacks away
The saying, “out of sight, out of mind,” is true with foods. Put the treats in a place where you don’t normally see them, and you may find you’re thinking about snacking less. Or, don’t keep those sugary or salty snacks in the house, so it’s inconvenient for you to get to them.  Utilizing both of these tricks will help you think about snacking less, and help curb cravings.

It is always okay to have foods that may not be the healthiest for you so long as you eat them in moderation. This takes time and practice, so try to improve on eating healthier foods each week, such as having a bowl of strawberries instead of a handful of fruity candy. Making those swaps every day can build self-control, limit the amount of unhealthy foods in your diet, and ultimately reduce and eliminate cravings. 

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