Medically reviewed by Dr. Muhammad Ashraf Shera.
You are on your bed at 1 am and suddenly the need to fill yourself with a sugary donut rises, or, you have finished a hard workout and all you need is a sweet treat. Yes, all of us face this ‘craving’ challenge sometime or the other.
Most often, people tend to act on the craving, then count the calories and be guilty, only to repeat it over and over again. Therefore, in this article, we talk about those ‘untimely sugar cravings’ and how you can fix it with these tips.
Sugar rush in the body
The human body wants sugar for various different reasons, and mostly each craving is different for each person. So let’s take a magnified view into why you crave sugar when you do.
· The sugarcoated habit
It has been rightly said that the chains of habit are generally too small to be felt until they are too strong to be broken. If you have a habit of eating sugar then you won’t slow down any time soon, as certain neurochemicals in the brain cause addiction to sugar. Moreover, you might have a habit of craving sugar when you are happy. This is because dopamine gets released when you experience happiness, and as a consequence, your brain will habitually want sugar.
· Give me my reward, sugar!
All of us want a reward when we achieve something, and the same applies when we are trying to get fit. The idea is to reward oneself with sugar for further motivation. But, this might not be the brightest idea as this can lead to sugar addiction. So like, cut down on those rewards and eat something healthy instead!
· Brain-g me some sugar
Your brain needs glucose in order to function properly, therefore it craves sugar. You don’t need to eat sugar to feed your brain glucose as it gets all it wants by breaking carbohydrates into simple sugars. However, your brain could be craving nutrient as a way to get what it wants even if it doesn’t need it. So beware if your mind is tricking you into a craving for sugar when you aren’t really.
Putting a salty end to these sugar cravings
If you’re on a mission to stop sugar cravings, then it might be pretty difficult at the start. But, you need to keep at it to set your body up for success. Therefore, here are a few tips that can help you finally shed a tear and bid farewell to these sugar cravings.
· Round 1: Fiber vs. Sugar
Your mother must have told you to eat a lot of fiber, and she is right. Eating fiber tends to help better cardiovascular and colon health. It also reduces the risk of obesity and cancer. So instead for reaching out for sugary foods, get foods like vegetables, beans, whole grain products, and legumes. These foods will help curb cravings as fiber helps to slow the absorption of foods you eat, and, also fulfill your fiber needs.
· Round 2: The Lean Meat Punch vs. Sugary fall
Lean protein is beneficial for your health for numerous reasons. Lean meats like chicken, salmon, etc. help to fill you up and keep you feeling full for longer. This means that your blood sugar levels will be managed well to reduce the risk of getting a sugar craving before the next meal.
· Round 3: Plain Healthy Water vs. Unhealthy Sugary Drinks
Water makes up most of your body, therefore making it a necessity for you to replenish your water stores as much as possible. Your sugar cravings can be due to you being thirsty. Sometimes, your body can be tricking you into thinking that you need sugar when it actually wants that H2O. So throw away all of those sugary drinks and food items, and instead drink about six to eight glasses of water daily to stay hydrated.
The ‘real’ sweet end
Stop sugar coating your life and start finding healthy substitutes instead. Eating excess sugar can lead to a lot of problems, and guess what? Sugar doesn’t care about your problems; it won’t ever care about them. So eat foods that are beneficial for your body, drink water when you face a sugar craving and start walking on that pathway that leads to a healthy life!
Guest Credits: Asma Qadri