Stabilize sugar cravings, sweetly
Does that morning pastry leave you craving more in 2 hours? Do you eat chocolate to combat your afternoon slump, and then drink cola to give you an added energy boost? Do you feel like your sugar cravings are out-of-control, and that eating sugar just makes you crave even more sugar?
Well, you’re not alone! Eating simple sugars or simple carbohydrates can give us that quick energy boost that we need in the short term, but without added protein or fat, we all go back for more. Most of us chalk our relationship with sugar up to will power, but in reality there are physiological factors going on in our body!
Carbohydrates release Serotonin, that “feel good” hormone in the brain, and the taste of sugar also releases endorphins that make us feel calm, relaxed and comforted. The problem is we are often left famished a couple hours later and faced with even more sugar cravings.
According to the American Heart Association, Americans consume about 22 teaspoons of added sugars per day even though the recommended dose is about 6 teaspoons per day for women and 9 for men. Here’s the good news, getting sugar cravings under control can be as simple as making a few small changes to how you eat sweets. Try these simple tips to help you this Halloween and beyond!
1) Give in a little. Research tells us that eating a small amount of what you’re craving can actually help you feel satisfied and not overindulge later in the day.
2) Sweets with protein. Eating Carbohydrates with protein can help to stabilize your blood sugar throughout the day. The added bonus with eating protein with carbs is that you increase your metabolism and it can even help you lose weight!
3) Eat frequently. Eating every 2-3 hours can significantly stabilize your blood sugar levels, curb those undeniable sugar cravings and give you more energy, naturally. You won’t have to grab that afternoon candy bar, and you’ll boost your metabolism, which helps you to lose weight!
4) Quality over Quantity. If you’re going to have sugar it might as well be that decadent chocolate truffle! It’s rich, real and very satisfying. Keep it small.
So, during a month where sweets will be at everyone’s front door, grab some protein snacks — cottage cheese, deli meat (without nitrates!), eggs, yogurt, nuts, fish, and beef — to curb those sweet tooth blues. Happy October! I look forward to meeting you soon. Erin