Christmas tends to be a time when we indulge. Celebrations include cakes, Christmas biscuits and mulled wine. Sugar is added to everything. After the initial sugar rush, it starts to become the norm and by January you start to need it. Spring however is now on the horizon and it’s time to ween yourself off the sugar. Here are some tips of how to overcome the crave and eventually get your sugar intake to a minimum.
Accept that you are going to have to deny yourself and use your will power. Denying yourself can cause stress but sometimes you have to use the power of your mind and yes sometimes you are just going to have to ‘suffer’ and go without. Like anything that you know that is not good for you and you want to give up, you are going to have to have some will power and say no to the desire.
Choose a High-End Product
To avoid the stress of total denial, give in to a small treat, but make it a good one. Make it a high quality, expensive treat that you eat in small bites and savor every mouthful. I find dark chocolate is a good choice. It has many good qualities. Dark chocolate (70-80% cacao) is not only sweet but also bitter and contains nutrients as well as being an antioxidant. That doesn’t mean eat as much as you like, but instead choose wisely and go for a high-end product that does not contain any additives.
Combine with other Foods
Combine sweets like some dark chocolate or dried fruit with some nuts or seeds. Dried fruits should also be organic and without any additives. They hare vitamins, nutrients and are antioxidant rich as well as containing fiber. However, because they are concentrated, they are very high in calories and sugar so they should also be seen as a treat and only eaten in very small amounts. Avoid all dried fruits that are candied. Combine with pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds and almonds so as to reduce the sugar content.
Drink plenty of water. So often people think they are hungry or in need of something sweet but in fact they are dehydrated. Water is neutral in flavor and quenches your thirst making it a perfect alternative to sugary drinks. Herbal teas are also an option if you are looking for some flavor. Some studies have even indicated drinking water burns calories and is a natural appetite suppressor.
Choose a Healthy Alternative First
Eat a carrot or a piece of fruit before having any chocolate or dessert. It may just be enough and if not, it will mean you need less of the more sugar dense dessert. As you know you can find simple sugars in fruits and vegetables. About 45% of the calories in a carrot comes from its sugar content. While it has sugar, carrots are however also packed with potassium, vitamin A and fiber, none of which you get from sugar itself.
Find a Hobby
Mind over mind. The mind is a powerful entity and we are often in conflict with ourselves. We want something even though we know it’s bad, but we don’t know how to say no to it. For some they have the will power, for others it is more difficult. Try to refocus. Do some sport or do some interesting research on a topic you are interested in or just go for a walk. Anything that works to take your mind off your cravings.
It can be difficult to give up on things especially when you are constantly craving them. But take one step at a time and try all these methods that will help you curb the cravings and allow your body to get back on track. It may take time but you’ll definitely feel better for it.