How to Beat Cravings

Snacking is the diet plan’s worst enemy. Beat the cravings with these handy tips.

When food cravings hit, they can be difficult to ignore, especially if the food you’re craving is something you particularly enjoy. It doesn’t help that more often than not, the foods we crave are foods that are bad for us, or high in sugar or saturated fat.

Giving in to cravings is one of the primary struggles faced by people trying to stick to a diet plan, either for weight loss or for their health. Here’s how to beat the cravings for good.

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Drink lots of water.

Thirst is easily confused with hunger or food cravings. If you’re suddenly craving a specific food, try drinking a big glass of water instead and see what happens. If the craving goes away, you know you were just thirsty. Drinking water is also great for you in general and can reduce appetite and speed up weight loss.

Up your protein intake.

Eating more protein can help you feel fuller for longer, reduce your appetite, and prevent overeating. Eating a high-protein breakfast, in particular, can help fight food cravings throughout the day and reduce the desire to snack mid-morning by up to 60%.

Plan meals.

When possible, plan your meals in advance. This can be just for a few days or an entire week. If you know exactly what you’re going to eat and shop accordingly, you prevent yourself from being able to grab something that may not be the best choice spontaneously.

Distract yourself.

When a food craving hits, try to distract yourself from it by doing something else. Take a shower, go for a walk, and read a book – whatever it takes to take your mind off what you’re craving. If that still doesn’t work, distract your mouth with a piece of gum. This has been proven to reduce appetite and get rid of cravings.

Don’t get hungry.

To avoid cravings for bad food, keep yourself topped up with good food options, and avoid getting to the point where you’re so hungry, and all you can think about is cheese. Eat regularly and keep good snacks close at hand to stop yourself reaching the point of extreme hunger.

Stay calm.

Stress can increase food cravings and influence us to eat bad foods. Studies have shown that people eat significantly more calories, and experience significantly more cravings when stressed than when their stress levels are normal. Stress can also increase the levels of cortisol, a hormone that can increase belly fat. Increased fat around the organs can increase the risk of developing several diseases. Minimize stress by planning ahead, being mindful of possible stress factors, and practicing meditation if needed.

Be mindful.

Mindful eating teaches you to be more aware of your eating habits, emotions, hunger, physical sensations, and cravings. It helps you to understand what your triggers for cravings are, which in turn can help you overcome them, and distinguish cravings from actual hunger. Studies have shown that eating mindfully can significantly reduce the risk of binge-eating.

About Mohit Tater

Mohit is the co-founder and editor of Entrepreneurship Life, a place where entrepreneurs, start-ups, and business owners can find wide ranging information, advice, resources, and tools for starting, running, and growing their businesses.

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