Are you one of those people that look at your watch at 3:30pm & automatically go looking for a chocolate bar? Or maybe it’s the need for a sweet treat to finish off your meal? Do you find you want more sugary satisfaction after you’ve already had your 4th biscuit? You’re not alone! It’s not rocket science though, you eat lots of sugar = you crave lots of sugar. But why do you crave it?
Why do we crave sugar?
The sweet taste is the one that is most preferred from birth & we are hardwired to lean towards it. Carbohydrate metabolism stimulates serotonin release (our feel-good hormone.), and many sweet treat foods will trigger the release of endorphins & a ‘food high’.
Causes of sugar cravings:
-low protein it the diet & overall poor diet
-low energy (i.e. poor sleep, poor diet )
-stress (i.e. excess cortisol, adrenalin)
-low in energy co-factor foods (i.e. B vitamins)
-excess intake of artificial sweeteners
-health concerns (i.e. thyroid, menopause, PMT )
How do you beat it?
-check your food intake, keep a food diary & get it check by your qualified health professional
-regular meals & VARIETY= no energy dips = not reaching for sugar as a ‘pick me up’
-protein at every meal = level blood sugar levels
-make food swaps ie: fruit & nuts, veggie sticks & a boiled egg, yoghurt & cinnamon
-increase cinnamon (1tsp per day) = improves blood glucose control
-increase chromium foods: onion, tomatoes, meats, broccoli, green beans, mushrooms. Chromium is an essential trace mineral that plays an important role in carbohydrate and fat metabolism and helps body cells properly respond to insulin
-skip the artificial sweeteners they only make you crave more sugar
-don’t reward your hard work with sugary treats, pick a different reward i.e. shopping
-check your labels & portions! you may be surprised how much sugar are consuming, here is a good example below: