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How to Conquer your Cravings


Break the sinister cycle that makes you overeat!

It’s not about eliminating your cravings altogether. That’s wishful thinking. It’s not about building your willpower, either. Relying solely on self-discipline all-too-often ends with a binge (and then a whimper). No, the way you conquer your cravings is by outwitting them by having a strategy.

Strategy #1 – Give your craving a timeout

Notice your snack urge, and sit with it for five minutes without taking action. Are you actually hungry? Or are you bored or stressed or procrastinating? You don’t have to choose between giving in to your cravings and depriving yourself. There’s a space in between the two, and that’s where you can really break the cravings cycle. Repeating this a few times and it will become easier.

Strategy #2 – Choose an activity that doesn’t involve chewing

What happens if you step away from the freezer and go for a walk, clean up your phone’s camera roll, or make a new Spotify playlist? By immersing your mind or body in an activity long enough, you may run the urge all the way out of your system. Choosing an activity such as walking and building on that habit can be useful if you are prone to snacking at a particular time of day (aka the 3pm munchies).

Strategy #3 – Try an experiment

Hunger and cravings tend to come in waves, rising and falling throughout the day. It’s okay to be hungry! This isn’t about testing your willpower or denying yourself. It’s about giving you a fresh perspective, and reducing the anxiety, discomfort, and urgency you feel the moment hunger or cravings arise. I know it can feel overwhelming, but getting use to the physiology of hunger will help in the long run.

Strategy #4 – Eat the right foods during the day (Protein)

People who overeat at night are often restricting their intake throughout the day—knowingly or unknowingly. What you eat during the day matters. Not so much what you eat on any given day, but what you eat most days. If you have a voracious night-time appetite, look at what you’re eating the rest of the day. You may find if you do a better job of nourishing your body at other meals, you won’t hear that little “feed me!” voice when you’re about to brush your teeth.

And how to nourish better? Eat meals that contain high amounts of protein. If you are eating a two egg omelette in the morning, 200g of chicken at lunch and a protein shake post workout, the chances of you snacking or binging are significantly smaller. Construct your meal protein first, then veggies/salad then turn to carbs and fats at the end (in smaller amounts).

Strategy #5 – Indulge your cravings (under the following conditions)

Really craving a chocolate bar? Okay, have one. But choose a pricey, high-quality chocolate. Eat it slowly, and savor the experience. If a food is in your house or possession, you WILL eventually eat it. Junk food alternatives can be helpful, but they shouldn’t be your only strategy and they are not all created equal. Most of the time you are swapping calories for calories.

Which of these resonated with you the most?

To Your Growth,

Chloe


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