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4 Ways to Stop Craving Unhealthy Foods

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For many, cravings are the biggest barrier standing in the way of being the healthiest version of themselves. I used to let one craving derail my past clean eating streak. Once I gave in to an urge, I saw it as a reason to give up on all my healthy eating goals. This cycle would continue endlessly. My diet would fluctuate between strictly eating natural, low-calorie foods to binge eating countless junk foods. But, these days, I've gotten a better handle on my cravings. Although trying to curb my unhealthy desires has been a huge mental challenge, combining that with physical habits has made it much easier for me to resist cravings. Ahead, I'm sharing the four ways I eliminate cravings and maintain a healthy diet.

1. Drinking water out of a tumbler

 

 
 

Thirst is often confused with hunger or food cravings. Drinking water will quench your thirst, and consequently eliminate any irrational cravings. If you are still feeling hungry after drinking water, that may be a sign to fill up on a healthy meal!

For me, sipping water from a cute cup makes it so much more fun. I find myself subconsciously grabbing my water tumbler, even when I don’t feel particularly thirsty just because I enjoy drinking out of it.  Drinking lots of water has become habitual, all thanks to a decorative water tumbler with a straw.

 

2. Always start the day off strong with a low-sugar breakfast

 

 
 

Mornings are when people usually feel the most motivated to eat healthily or get stuff done, so take advantage of that! Start the day off with a clean breakfast that isn't high in sugar.

When I eat a sugary pastry for breakfast, I crave more sugary desserts throughout the day because my tastebuds have gotten used to high levels of sweetness from that first bite of pastry. Remember that you have the power to control your sugar tolerance levels by carefully curating your diet. Eating fruits and low-sugar foods like plain oatmeal for breakfast can reduce your sugar tolerance and cravings.

3. Satisfy your cravings with these healthier alternatives

 

 
 

The stronger the craving, the more tempted you are to indulge. But by indulging in these healthier alternatives, you can “trick” your brain into satisfying those cravings without eating the high-calorie junk food.

  • If you're craving sugar, have a small piece of dark chocolate.
  • If you're wanting a salty food, munch on some popcorn (plain is best).
  • If you're in the mood for spicy foods or candy, try tropical fruits with tajin.

 

 

4. Aim to brush your teeth and go to sleep right after dinner

 

 
 

I like to brush my teeth right after eating dinner because food doesn't taste pleasant after brushing has left a strong, minty flavor in my mouth. That minty flavor always leaves my pearly whites feeling fresh, and I don't want to mess it up by eating a bunch of chips or ice cream. Since that minty, clean feeling can't last forever, going to bed right after brushing is the best way to stop those midnight cravings from creeping in!

Do you have your own tips for eliminate cravings? Let us know in the comments below!

 

 

 

Tiffany Marie Tran is currently a high school senior in San Jose, CA. She loves the challenge of writing: her poetry is in the Articulation is Power anthology, and she writes monthly activism articles as the Editor-In-Chief of Youth Art Magazine. Hoping to become a political journalist, she spends her time preparing for policy debate tournaments, organizing community events as a city council intern, and participating in the Santa Clara Office of Women's Policy Girls Advisory Team. To stay healthy during a busy week, Tiffany Marie enjoys figure skating or gardening.