By far the most difficult part of starting a new diet is dealing with the cravings that replace the foods you used to eat. All of the unhealthy things that were adding weight to you suddenly seem like pure gold that you have misplaced. While it’s true that most modern foods are pumped with sweeteners, salts, carbs, and who knows what else – to make them more appealing to the average person. However, there are alternatives to them. Most of the time, it’s a case of “what you can’t have.” The idea is simple: if you aren’t supposed to have it, you want it. This only makes cravings even stronger. But don’t fear; try these tactics the next time unhealthy cravings strike you.
While giving into cravings can be devastating if it happens all of the time. It’s not the worst thing to deny you the joy of eating. Instead of eating half bag of cookies, try to fill up on fruit. There are plenty of alternative sweets you can eat instead (fruit pops, chocolate covered strawberries, animal crackers) that won’t break the calorie bank. If your junk food of choice is a little heavier (like biscuits and gravy), just find a substitution for it. Instead of having thick gravy, try using skim milk to make your own lighter meal and drizzle it over just half of a biscuit. Will it taste the same? Not exactly, but it may be enough to satisfy your cravings. It may not come easily to everyone to think up alternatives, but that’s what the Internet is for. Plug in “healthy version of (comfort food here)” and you’ll get dozens of recipes in return.
There are numerous diets out there that actually recommend drinking water when you’re hungry. Water fills up the stomach before it makes its way out of our bodies, which might be enough to quell those hunger pains until you get to your next scheduled meal. Many people don’t know it, but sometimes your body might just be telling you that it needs more water, not more food. Try drinking at least one glass at first, and then reevaluate how you’re feeling.
The next time cravings strike you, take a walk. Going out and doing some form of exercise will not only make your body feel great and look great, it will also get your mind off from the junk food. It might take a little while for the effect to kick in, but once it does, you’ll most likely forget the bad food and focus on whatever exercise you’re doing. Also, once you start moving, you’ll remember what you’re doing.
Whether you catch yourself in the mirror or start feeling that sweat come on, working out will remind you why you needed to diet and get moving in the first place. Sometimes all it takes is a little prompting to put your goals back into view.