Today we are going to talk about the biggest obstacle standing in the way of your vibrant health -- food cravings.
Everyone has them. I'm sure you know yours. But do you know why? And more importantly do you know how to overcome them?
Cravings are slippery little suckers they sneak up on us the moment we feel vulnerable.
How many times have you been on a roll taking care of yourself only to fold at the first sight of a donut?
Maybe you were working on a tight deadline or up all night with the kids, and that donut seemed like the perfect ‘pick me up’. You don't remember eating it because it happened so fast. But you certainly remember how you felt afterwards; awful and disappointed.
Here's another issue you may have faced, how often do you find yourself thinking about food; breakfast, lunch, dinner, every snack, every sip right before bed, when you first wake up, every moment in between. It's an obsession, right!
Now imagine how good it would feel to heal that obsession and get your valuable brain space back. Picture what your life could be like if you had control over your cravings and even if you did eat something crappy how great it would feel to shake it off and get right back on track.
When it comes to cravings we tend to think of it as an epic battle that requires willpower and when cravings win we feel inadequate and beat ourselves up.
Well, I've got some good news for you; you're not weak, you're human!
Willpower won't and can't win every time, because willpower is mental but cravings are both mental and physical. Certain foods create a physical addiction and the standard American diet is loaded with stuff that tricks our brain into feeling good.
Before we delve into how to overcome these cravings let’s explore what we are most likely to crave. These are the foods that trigger reactions in the brain when we eat them.
- Sugar & starchy foods (think white bread, white pasta, cakes)
When eaten these foods trigger the release of endorphin's. These are our ‘happy hormones’ that make us feel happy and relaxed making us want more and more. The same thing happens with drug addiction. In fact a recent study shows that sugar can actually have a more intense feeling of reward than cocaine. It's that powerful.
But what’s with cheese? Now I can't count the number of my clients who have a hard time giving up cheese. I had a hard time too. There's a really good reason for that, casein (the main protein in milk) causes the production of opiates called Kesomorphins and guess what, Kesomorphins make you feel absolutely fantastic. Hello brie-addiction, right? I’ve been there!
Unfortunately the more we eat foods that ‘feed’ our cravings, the more the cycle of addiction continues. Here’s my top 3 solutions;
Solution #1: Crowd out the damaging addictive foods
Here's the good news because I always have good news. Eating our veggies and other plant based foods helps to rewire our brains, heal our addictions and crave real foods instead.
Start by downloading the ‘7 Day Starter Kit’ (see form below). In this you will get a 7 day menu, shopping list and all the recipes for a full 7 days of wholesome, delicious, plant based meals.
You might just be surprised at how delicious these recipes are because let's face it if it tastes like cardboard you're probably not going to want to eat it.
So rather than focusing on what you can’t eat, focus on finding tasty, nourishing foods you love and use them to create mouth-watering meals. That way without even knowing it, you begin to crowd out the damaging foods.
Solution #2: Prep & Planning
When you plan and prep your food for the week, you plan and prep your success for the week. And the more success you string together, the closer you’ll get to your health goals. Otherwise your goals are nothing more than a wish list.
To make this easy for you the ’7 Day Starter Kit’ has a menu and shopping list for a full 7 days of whole food plant based meals. Just try it and see how you feel.
A word of warning, if this type of eating is new to you then you will be getting more fibre than ever before. This fibre will go through your tummy like a tumble weed gathering up everything and shoving it along, possibly causing you to feel bloated, but stick with it, it will pass.
Solution #3 De-Stress
When we dial down our stress and make a consistent effort to eat better, stay hydrated and get more rest, we automatically dial down our cravings. Take a few minutes out of your day to practice yoga or mediate. When you do this you will be so much more effective in your efforts to eat better and feel so much better in yourself.
I also want you to be realistic with yourself because I really want you to succeed. When you change your eating habits it's natural to have setbacks, you're altering behaviour and biology that's been deeply ingrained in your system for years. So I want you to keep in mind that, regardless of the setbacks in your life, you've always got a comeback in you.
Need Extra Support Busting Your Cravings?
Because that chocolate bar looked so good at 4 pm after skipping lunch to get one more thing done on my to-do list! Sound familiar?
Impulse eating is definitely a major issue. But it is also something that can be controlled.
If you've never tried Slim & Sassy, you might want to stock up. It helps reduce cravings in the first place.