Following a weight loss plan can feel difficult when you first get started. For most people, an eating and exercise regimen becomes much easier after the first few weeks, as you begin to create healthier habits. But still, cravings do happen. Even people who have faithfully followed a healthy diet for years can experience the occasional craving!
When temptation strikes, you might find it helpful to ask yourself these four questions before giving in to the urge.
Am I feeling stressed? Foods that contain simple carbs and sugar are known to temporarily boost serotonin, the hormone that is associated with happiness. It’s understandable that during times of stress, we might automatically reach for something that our bodies recognize as a “quick fix”. However, the unfortunate downside is that this quick fix also wears off pretty fast. This leaves you craving more empty calories, and does nothing to solve the actual problem.
Am I feeling tired? If you’ve had trouble sleeping lately, the hormones that regulate appetite can be disrupted. Your body will begin to crave easy sources of energy, like sugar. Of course, this will only provide a temporary solution and then you’ll be right back where you started. Analyze your sleeping habits and make changes to get a better night’s rest, and you will find that some cravings subside.
Am I dehydrated? Our brains actually confuse thirst and hunger signals. If you experience any signs of dehydration, like dark yellow urine and feelings of tiredness, you might need to re-hydrate yourself before considering a snack.
Am I bored? It sounds funny, but because we tend to associate eating with pleasure, many of us experience cravings when we’re simply bored. If you suspect this is the case, head out for a walk or bike ride, call a friend, start a craft project, or otherwise occupy your mind. You will find that the craving subsides when you stop thinking about it.
If you do find that you’re actually hungry, choose a snack that better fits your weight loss plan instead of giving in to a craving. But do remember, an occasional small treat is acceptable.
We can help you balance your diet, choose the right nutritious foods to help you meet your goals, and more. Just give us a call to schedule an appointment, and we will discuss a weight loss plan that addresses your needs while promoting better health for life.