Nearly every single one of us comes up against the sugar cravings every now and again. For some of us, it’s on a daily basis. So I asked my friends on Facebook how they deal with it and got a few new tips and have also included some of my trusty old tips below too. Hope you find them helpful to deal with your cravings in the future
1. Drink more water
Believe it or not dehydration can cause us to crave sugar. Being well hydrated has a lot to do with our energy levels and when our energy levels get low what do we feel like doing? We feel like eating and we are often after the quick fix. Next time you get a craving, have a glass of water instead and see if that helps to solve the problem. And try to increase your water intake overall. Aim for 1.5-2 litres of water per day.
2. Take a supplement
Supplements are great especially when making the initial transition into a new dietary habit or when eliminating processed sugars out of your diet. A couple I find help most people are:
Gymnema sylvestre – the active ingredients in this herb helps balance blood sugar levels and dulls the senses in your tastebuds for sugary things. You can read more about gymnema here.
Chromium – helps to regulate appetite, and aids blood sugar and metabolism and is great for helping to reduce cravings.
For Aussies, I often recommend the Herbs of Gold Glucoplex. It’s a combination of gymnema sylvestre, chromium, cinnamon and a few other great herbs.
3. Make some homemade cacao chocolate
Quite a few of my Facebook friends said they go for the homemade cacao chocolate so I searched around and found a recipe that tells you how simple it is to make. Personally I’ll avoid the chocalate and prefer to use other methods but if it works for you, then way to go
4. Increase the Omega 3s
Increasing healthy fats in your diet helps on many different levels. They are best known for their anti inflammatory properties but when taken regularly they help to reduce sugar cravings. I often recommend taking flaxseed capsules and having 2 with every main meal. You can also drizzle a bit of olive oil over your meals or add some additional avocado on the side. These methods help overall to reduce cravings and help to regulate appetite too.
5. Cinnamon powder
Thanks to a comment from Clint Bauer on facebook I’ve learnt about the power of cinnamon as a way to control cravings. Simply try putting a small amount of cinnamon on a spoon and eat it. It works to kill cravings straight away. Cinnamon has a calmative effect of the digestive system and may aid digestion, cinnamon is a natural source of chromium, the supplement mentioned above, it helps to regulate blood glucose levels, and is also known for it’s anti inflammatory properties and it’s ability to help kill off candida albicans, bad intestinal bacteria. So other than helping to reduce sugar cravings, cinnamon can also provide other health benefits too.
6. L-Glutamine powder
L-glutamine is an amino acid that plays an important role in protein metabolism and nutrient assimilation. It helps digestive performance, brain function and mental ability, immune system function, blood sugar control, and may help with sugar cravings. Try putting a bit of L-glutamine powder under your tongue next time you get cravings and see if that helps.
7. Eat a piece of fruit
Fruit is natures natural sugar packed in a delicious parcel. Although fruit does contain fructose, which is sugar, the sugar in fruit arrives with added nutritional value as it contains a large amount of water, loads of dietary fibre that helps digest the sugar, along with vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals. I find that eating a piece of fruit helps satisfy my cravings. Have it with some full fat greek yoghurt and your cravings will be gone!
8. Suck on coriander or fennel seeds
If you’re the kind of person that loves lollies or chewing gum this method may work well for you. One of my clients used this simple method to slowly overcome her addiction to eating packets of jelly lollies a day and chewing gum. You can buy the whole coriander and fennel seeds at most health food stores and some supermarkets. They’ve got a refreshing flavour and can also be used in cooking.
9. Licorice tea
Although I haven’t personally tried licorice tea to control sugar cravings (yet), one of my Facebook friends suggested it as a technique they use. I love licorice tea, it has a sweet flavour, much like licorice candy, so I could see how it would be helpful with the sugar cravings. Licorice tea also has so many other great health benefits and I’ve often used it for helping to relieve chest congestion with colds because it’s a natural expectorant. It’s certainly something worth adding to the list of things to try for sugar cravings.
10. Get active
Sometimes when we get cravings it’s not because we are hungry in any way, it’s simply because we are bored and need a little distraction. I find one of the best strategies is to engage in a bit of activity. Go for a walk, do some housework, get in the gym. When you’re distracted and busy you often don’t feel like reaching for the sugar!
As you can see, there is no one way to deal with sugar cravings, it’s more a matter of having strategies available to us and then putting them into action when the sugar cravings hit. To help as a reminder, I’ve made this post into a pdf document that you can print up and stick on your fridge so next time you feel like sugar, just select one of these simple strategies and see what works for you. Click here to download it.
Good luck and please share this post with friends to help them deal with sugar too