Food cravings can become a dieting devil on your shoulder – here are some genius ways to get rid of them!
What causes food cravings?
When you’re trying to lose weight, food cravings are really annoying. You’re all set up for success, ticking every box…and then an urge pops up out of nowhere and takes control of your thoughts - we’ve all been there.
Food cravings can be caused by a few things, some of them psychological and physical, and others to do with our environment. If you’re in a calorie deficit to lose weight, then some hunger and food-related thoughts should be expected. But if cravings are causing misery, here’s what you can do.
3 ways to stop food cravings before they start
Don’t go too long without eating
There’s a hunger hormone called ghrelin (sounds like gremlin….coincidence much?) Ghrelin kicks in when you’re getting low on energy, to signal that you need to eat. Useful in the wild, not so handy when you’re trying to lose the last half stone. Space your meals out so you don’t run the risk of getting too hungry.
Identify your triggers
Spend time working out what kicks off a food craving. Is it food smells, seeing fast food adverts, seeing food accounts on Instagram? You can crush a lot of cravings by simply knowing where they originated.
Manage your environment
Once you know your triggers, rejig your environment to minimize them. Unfollow the foodie Instagram accounts, change your commute so you don’t drive past the corner shop, stand away from the café at the train station.
5 ways to crush pesky food cravings
Have a hot drink
Try drinking hot squash or a cup of herbal tea to occupy your hands and give your tastebuds something sweet.
Try an alternative
You can get lower-calorie versions of most things from puddings to crisps – try a portion-controlled amount.
Make your meals filling
Lean protein, veggies and fruit make your meals filling and high in volume. Salads and stir fries will keep you feeling full on fewer calories.
Brush your teeth
If you’re at home when the craving strikes, get straight up and brush your teeth. Having a minty clean mouth might banish the urge to eat.
A little of what you fancy
Sometimes the only way to crush a very specific craving is to have a small amount. You’ll need to be disciplined with this approach – measure out a small amount (never eat from the packet), eat it mindfully, then move on.
You’ve got this! We’re here to support you through all the challenges – and celebrate with you on all the wins.