Remember that old Lay’s potato chip slogan “betcha can’t eat just one?” Well America lost that bet. Big time. We can’t eat just one. We can’t stop at two either. Or three. Or twelve.
Americans are eating more junk food than ever before. But don’t blame Lay’s catchy marketing. Blame highly processed and manufactured foods that actually make us CRAVE more junk. As if eating healthy wasn’t hard enough!
If you’re trying to lose weight, or get healthy, cutting back on junk food is a must. But it can be SO. HARD.
We find all kinds of reasons to eat the cookie (I’m tired, I worked out today, I deserve it) but not enough reasons NOT to eat the cookie (we don’t need the extra calories, we’re not really hungry, we WORKED OUT today.)
The key here is, obviously, self-control. Stop making excuses, focus on your goals, and decide what is more important. Less than a minute of “pleasure,” or hours of guilt?
We do feel guilty when we give in, don’t we? Oftentimes before your stomach has even started digesting that cookie you’re already beating yourself up about it.
My advice? Don’t spend a lot of time wallowing in guilt. It just makes you feel worse. You want to feel better. Instead, use that guilty feeling as motivation the next time a craving comes.
When you start to think you really want that snack (whatever it is) STOP. Inhale. Exhale. Pause for a moment and think about the risk versus the rewards. You’ve made progress. Is this a step backwards?
If you decide that, in fact, it is worth it and you really have to have that treat, have it. Then move on.
Think about what it was about today that led you to that choice, and it will teach you about yourself. And you can use that information to become stronger. To know your triggers and find other ways to treat them.
Here are some suggestions for dealing with cravings:
A cup of tea with lemon does wonders for sugar cravings. I’m not sure why, but it makes mine go away every time.
When I have weak moments, I go online and look at pictures of some of my favorite fitness competitors, or even my own pics of when I was happier with my body. Images like these can help remind you of your goals and reenergize your motivation.
Healthier versions of your favorite treat can also satisfy those cravings without sabotaging your waistline. Try my Sugar Free Peanut Butter Cups, or whip up this instant version to stop a craving fast:
2 tbsp PB2
1/2 tbsp Unsweetened cocoa powder
dash of almond milk
a few drops of stevia
a few drops of vanilla
Mix the PB2 with just enough almond milk to make it a peanut butter-like consistency. Spoon into a muffin liner. Mix the cocoa with the vanilla, stevia, and enough almond milk to make it liquid. Pour the cocoa onto the PB2. Freeze for an hour. Enjoy.