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Why Do We Crave Sugar?

January 12th, 2015 | by Events Staff
Why Do We Crave Sugar?
Nutrition
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How many of you crave sugar on a daily basis? I would say most of you! This is because you are not eating enough. I have been preaching weekly about the importance of eating little and often throughout the day so that your body does not have these sugar peaks and troughs. Trust me, eating every few hours, the correct foods, protein and carbohydrates will help you lose weight.

Serotonin is a brain chemical that makes you feel content and happy. Eating sugar can increase the absorption of an amino acid called trytophan, which helps your body make serotonin, so it’s possible eating sweet things simply makes you feel happy. Or even the opposite might be true. Avoiding sweet things may make you feel depressed. The thing is sugar has calories but no additional nutritional value and the calories add used up very quickly by the body. Plus sweet treats also contain huge amounts of unhealthy saturated and trans-fats.

Understand that a craving is NOT the same as hunger. It’s not your body calling for energy. A craving is driven by the brain’s need for a reward, not your body needing food. My first suggestion is to stay strong and start preparing something healthy to eat immediately.

 

My suggestions;

  • If you get hungry or crave sugar eat a meal/snack containing a protein and a complex carbohydrate source such as brown rice or a sweet potato. Or even a whole meal pitta with some chicken and salad. This has fewer calories than a chocolate bar and is much healthier and more filling! Keep healthy food accessible at all times. As I have mentioned previously on my healthy eating plans Women eat 5-6 small meals a day and men 6-8.
  • Go for a brisk walk to distance yourself. This serves a two-fold purpose. First of all, you are distancing yourself from the food you’re craving. Second, the exercise will release endorphins, which are ‘feel good’ chemicals in your brain, which can help turn the craving off.

 

Other things that can work…

  • Get rid of all junk foods in your house. If you keep junk within close reach, then it’s an uphill battle. Don’t think you’re depriving anyone else around of junk if you don’t keep it. On the contrary, you’re helping them live healthier lives.
  • Have a large glass of water or sugar free squash as some cravings can be caused by dehydration.
  • Make sure you’re eating your protein. I drink protein shakes, low in calories, but good for the body.
  • Sleep well. Getting proper, refreshing sleep is important for overall health and can help prevent cravings.
  • Avoid excess stress. Same as with sleep, avoiding stress can help prevent cravings.

 

Don’t starve yourself. Try to prevent yourself from becoming too hungry between meals. Write your own list of the reasons why you want to eat healthy, carry it with you & put a copy of it on the fridge door. I know it can be hard to remember when you get a crazy craving! Try one of my healthy eating plans. You will never look back and your sugar cravings will disappear.

 

So my top tips this week:

  • Eat little and often throughout the day, a protein and a complex carbohydrate source with every meal.
  • Get rid of all naughty treats from the house!
  • Drink a pint of water or sugar free squash, this will help your sugar craving
  • Go to bed an hour earlier, this will reduce cravings and stress.
  • Don’t starve yourself, your body will only hold onto fat.

 

For more information on healthy eating and bespoke exercise plans contact me at nonevans.com

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