We all probably know the urge to indulge our sweet tooth — we need sweets and we need them now! We may also crave pizza or other greasy, salty foods.
Bad urges appear when we least expect them and usually when we are not ready to face them.
What causes food cravings?
Are cravings caused by nutrient deficiencies?
While this may seem like one of the most obvious explanations, there is no conclusive evidence that cravings are caused by nutrient deficiencies. Only certain conditions, such as sodium depletion and pica, have been shown to cause cravings.(1, 2, 3, 4)
- Lack of sleep(5)
- Hormonal changes
- Not drinking enough fluids
- Imbalance of leptin and ghrelin(7)
As there are many things that can increase food cravings, we also have a number of tips on how you can fight the urge to reach for the chocolate bar.
10 Tips to Curb Food Cravings
To help you reduce cravings, these tips are ranked based on how quickly you can implement them. So while you may be tempted to reach for the fastest results, we encourage you to try them all over the next few weeks for the best results.
Here’s what you can do to stop cravings in 5 minutes or less.
1. Drink some water.
The simplest thing you can do to curb your cravings is to a A large glass of water And wait a few minutes. Even if the craving doesn’t go away completely, the fullness of your stomach will reduce it.
2. Play games on your phone
Who knew that playing games on your phone could help curb cravings? Whether you have a glass of water or not, it’s important to take your mind off your cravings for a few minutes. A study has shown that playing Tetris on your smartphone for just 3 minutes can weaken a variety of cravings, including food cravings.(9) It’s too easy not to try, right?
3. Drink some coffee
Coffee can have a greater effect on your appetite and food intake than water. Although more research is needed, it appears that coffee can suppress acute energy intake.(10) what is the meaning of this? Immediately after drinking a cup of coffee, people will eat less than they would without it. So even if you end up cravings, you’re more likely to keep your treat size moderate and not go overboard. Another study found that decaffeinated coffee can help suppress hunger even more!(11)
4. Brush your teeth.
This trick will work in two ways. First, it can trick your brain into thinking the food is gone. But even if Your The mind isn’t easily tricked, the cool minty toothpaste taste will linger in your mouth, making it difficult to eat anything later. At least it won’t taste as good…
Craving something sweet?
Cravings can range from sweet to savory and fatty. But sugar cravings are usually the hardest to deal with — that’s why we’ve got extra tips (and meal replacements) to curb your sugar cravings!
What can you do to curb cravings throughout the day?
5. Eat more protein.
Protein is your ally against crazy cravings, because:
- Increasing protein intake can reduce cravings.(12)
- Eating more protein can help fight cravings at night. (13)
- Protein keeps you full for longer. (13)
6. Do light exercise.
Before you start cranking out 100 burpees, think about this: An intense workout may make you feel hungry, but a lower-intensity activity, such as walk fast or Short body weight home workout It can have the opposite effect. One study found that it can actually make you eat only half the amount of chocolate you would have otherwise.(15)
7. Avoid excessive hunger.
The more hungry you are, the greater the chance that you won’t be able to fight the urge. It’s as simple as that. So don’t look for a solution when it’s too late. Plan your meals in advance and make sure that a A healthy breakfast From you if you suffer from hunger pangs. Often it can also help to eat several small meals a day (for example, three main meals and two snacks between meals) to keep your blood sugar levels stable. That way you won’t have sudden food cravings.
What you can do to prevent long-term cravings
8. Get enough sleep.
Insufficient sleep can affect your appetite and increase cravings. (16) Unfortunately, the The importance of sleep It is often overlooked when it comes to fitness and weight loss.
The problem is that we easily become addicted to less sleep and fail to realize its true effects on us. We get cranky, constantly. hungry, unhappy, And start blaming it on work, stress, or lack of time. But more often than not, the real cause is lack of sleep. If you have trouble sleeping, this 7 Foods That Can Help You Sleep Better!
9. Mindful eating
Mindful eating is related to the general practice of mindfulness. Mindfulness is generally about practicing awareness and being present in the moment without judgment. This can also be done in relation to food and eating.(17)
An Indiana State University study tested the effects of a short meditation before eating or when the urge to binge appears. This involved focusing on one’s awareness of behaviors, beliefs, and emotions associated with food intake. The results suggested a positive effect, as the frequency and severity of hunger attacks decreased for the meditation group.(18)
Although binge eating and cravings are not the same thing, they can appear together. And other recent studies have discovered that meditation can change these behaviors. (15)
10. Think long term.
It would be unrealistic to expect that a craving can be curbed by rational thought, but taking a step back and imagining the long-term consequences helps some people manage their cravings better.
Some of the consequences may include:
- Low energy level
- Mood swings and more negative
- Health risks of obesity and diabetes
do you know?
A study shows that “comfort foods” such as junk food do not necessarily provide a better “feeling of comfort” than eating other types of food. This “comfort food myth” is now being investigated in other experiments. Try to satisfy your cravings with a healthier version of the same food.(20)
The important thing is that you learn to tell the difference between true hunger and cravings for sweet or salty foods. Follow our tips and soon you too will be able to understand your body’s signals.
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