Are you battling sugar cravings?
Sick of feeling like you have no will power when it comes to sugar?
It’s everywhere… Cookies, soft drinks, ice cream, chocolates, sweets… pulling at you like a magnet from all directions.
You try and resist the urge, but eventually, give in and find your hand back in the cookie packet. And, after your sugar fix, you feel weak and frustrated. Why can’t I control myself? What’s wrong with me?
You lose confidence in yourself and your willpower.
You try and fail time and time again. It becomes a vicious circle and you’re sick of it.
I’ve been there and here to tell you, there is hope.
Here are 7 ways that have helped me find a better balance in my body and liberate myself from sugar cravings. Now I’m in control, and you can be too.
1. Fill up on foods that don’t cause blood sugar spikes.
Refined sugary foods are broken down quickly in the body, resulting in sugar spikes in the blood. When blood sugar levels spike high, they fall later, which can cause you to crave something sweet to pick you up again.
Healthy whole foods like whole grains, fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds, proteins, and eggs, are a different story. These foods are broken down slower in the body, which prevents sugar spikes.
And so, instead of focusing on cutting out sugar, eat more whole foods. That way you’ll keep your body’s blood sugar levels more balanced and prevent sugar spikes that can cause cravings.
An article you may enjoy: Stop Dieting and Start Nourishing
2. Experiment with alternative healthier treats.
It’s important to remember that you can reprogram your taste buds over time. And so, instead of feeling denied of all life’s sweet pleasures, start looking at all the other healthier alternatives you can try.
Make a list of all your favourite sugary fixes. Now, have some fun researching healthier alternatives for each of them. Think about what you like about your treats and open your mind to new and nourishing options.
Instead of milk chocolate, opt for darker chocolate. Enjoy a bag of raw nuts instead of a bag of chips. Instead of sweets opt for berries. Give your taste buds an opportunity to adapt to a new and healthier normal.
3. Be prepared for your next grocery shop.
It all starts with what you choose to buy and bring into your front door. If you have biscuits and sweets in your cupboard at home, the temptation is that much higher. And so, before your next grocery shop, go prepared.
Firstly, go with a shopping list that includes your new healthier alternatives to your typical sugar fixes. Secondly, before you go shopping, make a decision to avoid the sugar aisles. With this focus, you’ll help beat the temptation.
Without temptation ready-to-eat in your kitchen, you’ll have no option but to reach for something healthier. This foundational step is essential in supporting you on your quest to conquer your cravings.
4. Crowd out cravings with sweet fruit and vegetables.
Most fruits and some vegetables are naturally sweet. And although they don’t offer the same kind of sweetness as a doughnut, they help satisfy some of the sweetness your body is craving.
Enjoy your favourite fruits for breakfast, snacks or dessert. Or, add vegetables like sweet potatoes and squash to your meals. Both fill you up and give you some of the sweetness you desire.
Sometimes cravings are a sign of a nutrient deficiency, and whole fruits and veggies are a great way to nourish your body with tons of essential nutrients. And, at the same time, you’re getting some of the sweet taste you’re craving.
5. Balance your body with more sleep.
Sleep has a big impact on the natural cycle of the body. A lack of sleep disrupts this cycle and can lead to cravings for unhealthier sugary and fatty foods, as well as overeating.
Two hormones that help regulate hunger are Ghrelin and Leptin. Ghrelin stimulates appetite and Leptin decreases it. Interestingly enough, when sleep-deprived, Ghrelin increases, which leads to an increase in hunger.
So, make quality sleep a priority. This way you help keep these hormones balanced and prevent additional cravings from flaring up and wreaking havoc with your will power.
6. Stay focused WHY you’re on this journey.
Battling your sugar cravings can be tough, especially in the beginning. You’ll find yourself in tough situations, where your sugar dragon will rise up and test your strength. This is when you remember your WHY.
At the start of your journey, write down why you want to conquer your sugar cravings. What is the deeper reason behind this decision? Keep it written down somewhere you can easily refer to. In tough moments, go back to it.
No matter if you fall off the wagon countless times, your WHY will motivate you to get back up again. And, over time, you’ll feel more and more in control of your cravings. And this will motivate you to keep going.
7. Accelerate your progress with a sugar detox.
All the tips above will help you gradually reduce your sugar cravings. But, if you want to accelerate your progress and transform your relationship with sugar, put your brave pants on and do a 30-day sugar detox.
On a detox, you basically cut out all refined sugars for 30 or more days. This includes any processed foods that have added refined sugars, sweet or savoury. From soft drinks and sweets to ready-made sauces.
There are many sugar detox guides online, so do your own search and find something that works for you. The Whole30 Challenge worked particularly well for me, and completely changed my relationship with sugar forever.
Ready to kick those nagging sugar cravings out of your life?
You are more than capable of breaking free of your sugar cravings and discovering a wonderful world of delicious food without the urge to reach for the white stuff.
Pick one of the tips above, and give it a go. Make the commitment, prepare yourself, and keep getting up no matter how many times you fall off the wagon.
Eventually, as you try some of the strategies above, you’ll recalibrate your body and your taste buds. That’s when you’ll start to choose when you want to indulge, instead of letting your cravings decide for you.
Oh man, how good it feels. Trust me, it’s worth the effort.
You’ll be the one in the driver’s seat. And after you’ve conquered your sugar cravings, you’ll feel like anything is possible!
Keep going for your dreams