How to get over those sugar cravings

4 Mar

I’ve been avoiding sugar for the last 10 years. Invariably I fall of the wagon, and need to work at eliminating it from my diet again. The hardest thing for me is to get over the sugar cravings I get for the first week or so. This is how I get over the first bump.

Don’t wait

There is no better time than the present. You don’t need to give up at the beginning of a week or a month (ignore my example). Jump into it.

Have a final binge

What is something sweet you really enjoy? Something indulgent that you rarely get to eat (think honey chocolate lavender tar). Eat it with great pleasure. Now, when you’ve stopped eating sugar and you are having those “but they are really yummy” thoughts, you can think back to that meal and think “yeah,  those are yummy but don’t compare to that last sugary thing I ate”.

Don’t keep sugar in the house

I have no control. If I had anything sweet in my house I would just eat it. The barrier of leaving the house is often enough to prevent a sugar binge

Indulge

The first week is hard. You aren’t going to be perfect in all areas of your diet and life. In the first week I relax what else I eat. Just yesterday I had sugar cravings badly. As a compromise I had some hot chips with chicken salt. Fatty, umami rich foods tend to be perfect for this.

Have dairy

Lactose is a type of sugar. As far as sugars goes, its not a bad one and since it comes with dairy there is is often enough protein to prevent crazy sugar spikes. When the cravings get bad,  I have some milk. Or poured cream over an cinnamon/bourbon/acv/almond baked apple as I did yesterday when the hot chips proved to be only a temporary fix.

Exercise

Light exercise helps regulate sugar levels. I find when I’m exercising regularly in the mornings I’m in a healthy mindset and feel more reluctant to break my streak.

Sleep

What I’ve written already has a basis in fact, however this point is purely anecdotal experience. If I’m really being distracted by the cravings, having a nap really helps me. When I’m in this state is not hard to fall asleep and I wake up feeling refreshed and not distracted by sugar.

Chromium

Chromium is a mineral that helps regulate sugar levels. Annoyingly, having unbalanced sugar levels often leads to a decrease in chromium levels. Chromium is annoying rare in most vitamin/mineral line ups. I like Blackmores Sugar Balance tablets, as they also control magnesium and zinc which are both also known to help regulate sugar levels.

Keep your social commitments

I find the only way for me to kick the habit is to be strict and fairly uncompromising. But this isn’t going to work if you become a social out cast. For me, I say birthdays are occasions where I will have some sugar, normally in the form of birthday cake. That way, people won’t hassle me about not eating sugar and I won’t be mopey about not even getting any birthday cake.

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What are your favourite tricks to give up sugar and avoid the cravings?

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