It can be hard to follow a healthy diet when cravings kick in. Whether you crave sweets, salty treats, soda or any other junk food, you’re not alone. Knowing how to handle your cravings can make all the difference in it turning into a full unhealthy indulgence. According to Florida Hospital Registered Dietician Sherri Flynt, “Cravings happen to us all, and the best thing we can do is to be prepared to handle them appropriately when they arise in order to avoid always giving in to them.”
Next time you find yourself wanting something unhealthy, try one of the following strategies to curb your craving:
1. Keep yourself busy – Try going for a walk, listening to music, calling a friend, attending an exercise class or reading a book. If your mind is busy focusing on another activity, you’ll be less likely to think about food.
2. Focus on your breath – Take a moment to focus your breath and ask yourself if this snack is something you need or if it’s something you just want.
3. Find a healthy alternative – Trade that bowl of ice cream or bag of chips in for a homemade fruit popsicle. Try this recipe for Strawberry-Pineapple Frozen Bars.
4. Grab a stick of a gum – Sometimes cravings stem from your mouth being bored. Try chewing on a piece of gum and move on to doing something productive.
5. Track your cravings – When a craving arises, ask yourself if you’re really hungry or if your “hunger” is actually stemming from something else. Dehydration and fatigue can increase a person’s appetite, so try drinking a glass of water or taking a quick power nap first.
6. Treat yourself – Forbidding yourself to indulge from time to time might only make you end up overindulging. Occasionally allowing yourself to enjoy a small portioned treat is perfectly acceptable.
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