Cookies and ice cream and chips – oh my! I don't know about you, but temptation seems to be everywhere. We all know that we need to cut back on the amount of junk and processed food we eat.
But knowing and doing are two completely different things!
Don't get me wrong – I enjoy the occasional treat once in a while. But, it can sure be hard to stop once you pop open that package. And sometimes our snack attacks can get a little out of control.
Most times we're snacking out of habit, or because we're bored. We also crave food when what we really need is connection with others.
We've become a society focused on gratification versus fulfillment.
I don’t think we will ever NOT have cravings, so we need to learn how to deal with them.
Luckily, I have learned some skills over the years to help me out when I have a snack attack. Here is something you can try the next time you’re faced with temptation!
Step 1: Delayed gratification: Tell yourself you can have it later, if you still really want it.
Step 2: Distraction: Get busy doing something else, like going for a walk.
Step 3: Conscious indulgence: Once you’ve waited for at least 20 minutes, check in with yourself to see if you are truly hungry.
Because if you’re truly hungry, you’ll eat anything!
We may need to redefine "comfort food" and look for other ways to satisfy our needs when it isn't hunger that's driving us to eat.
Because if there's one thing I know for sure, it's that no amount of food will feed that empty feeling inside!
Cravings can also be important messages that something in your body is out of balance. When we properly nourish our bodies, we can actually start to trust our cravings, and figure out what we really need and do our best to make choices that support our health and goals.
Once you understand what your body needs, it's much easier to get your cravings under control.
The three main causes of cravings are nutritional, hormonal and emotional.
For example, when you have a craving for chocolate your body could be low on magnesium. Craving salty food can mean you're low on potassium.
Your changing hormone levels throughout the month (and as you age) can cause you to crave sugar and highly refined carbohydrates like bread and pasta. Unfortunately, eating more sugar and refined carbohydrates leads to weight gain, unless our activity level can compensate!
Try keeping a food and mood journal so you can track your feelings and your cravings, then you can start to make connections and notice patterns.
When you understand the connection between WHAT you eat, WHY you eat, and HOW you feel, you will feel more in control and be able to make better choices.
Try to determine if some of your cravings are based more on habit or what you may be keeping in the house and look at how to best address that to make changes.
I do a lot of work with my clients around cravings. If you would like help and support to get your cravings under control, then click the button below to book a chat with me.
YES! I want help with my cravings!