We all know that cravings are the enemy of weight loss. If you’re trying to lose some weight, you’ll want to learn how to beat your cravings so you can stick to your diet plan, exercise routine, and every other healthy habit you’re trying to incorporate into your life. There are tons of ways to do this—you may have to experiment with different techniques until you find what works best for you—but luckily, we’ve got 10 great ones that might help you kick your cravings to the curb! (more…)
1) Focus on long-term goals
When you’re trying to make a change in your eating habits, it’s important to focus on your long-term goals. You might be tempted to give in to your cravings, but if you can keep your eye on the prize, you’ll be more likely to stick with your healthy eating plan.
2) Eat more often
Eating more often can help reduce cravings because it stabilizes blood sugar levels. When blood sugar levels are stable, the body is less likely to crave sugary or high-fat foods. Try eating smaller meals or snacks every three to four hours.
3) Drink water
Water is often overlooked as a tool for fighting cravings, but it’s extremely effective. When you’re feeling a craving coming on, drink a glass of water and wait 10 minutes. In many cases, the craving will pass. And even if it doesn’t, you’ll have taken in some extra fluids, which is always a good thing.
4) Get enough sleep
If you’re well-rested, you’re less likely to make poor food choices out of fatigue or crankiness. Aim for seven to eight hours of sleep per night. Consider going to bed and waking up at the same time each day to help regulate your body’s natural sleep rhythm. Avoid caffeine and alcohol before bed, as they can disrupt sleep. Create a relaxing bedtime routine, such as reading or taking a bath, to help ease you into sleep.
5) Get social support
There’s nothing wrong with admitting that you need help when it comes to conquering your cravings. In fact, asking for support is a sign of strength. So tell your friends and family about your goals and ask them to help you stay on track.
6) Use smaller dishes and utensils
If you’re trying to lose weight, you know that portion control is key. But did you know that the size of your dishes and utensils can also play a role in how much you eat? Studies have shown that people tend to eat more food when they use larger plates and forks. So next time you’re feeling hungry, reach for a smaller plate and see if it helps curb your appetite.
7) Avoid being bored while eating
- Keep yourself busy while you eat. Try reading a book or watching a movie.
- Drink lots of water. Thirst can often be mistaken for hunger.
- Eat slowly and mindfully. Pay attention to the flavors and textures of your food.
- Distract yourself with something else. Call a friend or go for a walk.
- Fill up on healthy foods first. Eating nutritious foods will help reduce cravings for less healthy options later on
8) Don’t starve yourself
If you try to starve yourself, you’re more likely to give in to your cravings. Keep your hunger at bay by eating small, frequent meals throughout the day. That way, you won’t be so ravenous come mealtime that you end up overeating.
9) Exercise and relax before meals
When you’re trying to lose weight, fight cravings, and make healthier choices, it can feel like you’re constantly at war with your own body. But there are things you can do to make it easier. Start by exercising for 20 minutes before meals. Research has shown that this helps people eat less throughout the day, which means that they don’t feel as hungry when it comes time for a meal. Make sure to relax as well – meditating or reading a book will help reduce stress levels and lower blood pressure, so you’ll be less likely to overeat or have high-sugar foods on hand when hunger hits.
10) Cognitive reframing
If you’re trying to lose weight, cognitive reframing can be a helpful tool. This technique involves changing the way you think about food and your relationship with it. For example, if you’re trying to stop eating ice cream when you feel down because of your break-up with someone special, instead of thinking that ice cream will make you feel better, focus on how much better off you’ll be when the weight is gone. It’s difficult at first but gradually those positive thoughts start outweighing the negative ones. In other words: Stop craving bad for good!