Halloween is such a fun time of year…the costumes, the parties, the kids out trick-or-treating, and yes, the treats themselves! Candycorn, Caramel Apples, etc…they are all just a part of the celebration and fun that night. But what about the days and weeks after Halloween? Do you find yourself sneaking your sticky fingers into your kids candy loot? Sneaking “just one more butterfinger”…..6 times a day? Refined sugar has been found to have effects on the chemistry in the brain similar to the effects of drugs. Plus it creates a cycle of craving, binging, and even withdrawal! No wonder candy consumption gets so out of control! You know that eating all this sugar is not good for your health OR your fat-loss efforts. You know you are self-sabotaging! What on earth can you do to stop the cravings? Here are a couple tips I find useful:
1. Get it out of the house! ….Take it to work and give it to someone who you do NOT sit close to! Throw it away, do whatever you must but get it out of sight! Out of sight Out of mind is so applicable here. Now this tip may be super easy if your kids are very young and won’t really notice that you stole their “stash”…if you have kids who are older and fiercely protective over their candy, it might not work so great. Fortunately you have other tips at your disposal!
2. Drink lots of water. This keeps your mouth busy, your stomach full, and your digestion speeding along. You want to detox out all the sugar and gunk in your system!
3. Protein at every meal/snack. Hard boiled eggs, Meat (organic, grass fed preferably), cottage cheese, protein powder, greek yogurt, scrambled eggs, etc. This helps you to keep full and keeps your blood sugar levels even so you don’t get uncontrollable cravings. Plus, protein helps you to maintain your muscles so you can keep a high metabolism!
4. Don’t let yourself get too hungry! We all know the feeling of being RAVENOUS and tearing into the kitchen with the intent to eat anything that gets in our grasp. This always leads to bad eating choices and loads of regret. Plus, when you don’t eat all day, you tend to justify it to yourself: “I haven’t eaten all day…a bit of candy won’t hurt!” *Binges*
5. Keep yourself, and your mouth, busy! If you are just snacking because you are bored, go for a walk or call someone. (It is rude to talk on the phone with your mouth full, in case you are wondering. Some people still don’t know this!) If you are just wanting to keep your mouth busy while you do computer work or whatever it is, try going for hot coffee or tea! The warmth fills you up and it is a great distraction from snacking. Just don’t put sugar in your drink! Brushing your teeth, peppermint gum, all of these things are going to keep your mouth occupied without adding the sugar to your body that candy will!
6. If you really are craving something sweet, try substituting something healthy! Frozen grapes and berries are slow to eat and really are very sweet, but won’t make your blood sugar go wild! Apples are delicious on their own, even without caramel! Besides the lower sugar content of fruit, fruit is full of fiber to keep you full.
Try these tips the next time a craving for candy attacks you, and remember, cravings only last a few minutes, but the damage they can do can last a long, long time. Stay tuned for more tips on keeping on the fat-loss path during the Holiday season!