Curb sugar cravings with 5 simple tips to keep your diet on track.
Sometimes, even those with the most willpower are subject to craving a sweet, sugary snack. Ensuring your diet is already rich in vital nutrients will help curb those cravings and help you stay on a healthy track.
“Eating sugar causes the brain to release endorphins giving us a “sugar high” – which is pleasurable,” said HelloFresh’s in-house dietician, Rebecca Lewis. “Over time, you become dependent on sugar for these feelings and develop cravings.”
The first step in keeping sugar cravings at bay is achievable when adding these types of foods into your diet:
Drinking water throughout the day has shown to have significant health benefits. One study showed that middle-aged and elderly people who drank water before meals reduced their appetite and ultimately aided in weight loss (1). A study has actually shown that adults who drank the 1.5 liters of water per day were more inclined to consume more fruits and vegetables and consumed less calories than the adults who did not consume the same amount of water (4).
Looking for another incentive to consume more water? Toss in a scoop of Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides, an unflavored, yet nutrient-dense way to score collagen, protein, and amino acids into your daily routine.
Studies have shown that consuming more protein on a day-to-day basis may curb your appetite and reduce overeating and cravings, as well as helps keep you feeling full and satisfied for a longer period of time (2).
Chicken, Greek yogurt, salmon, eggs, and cottage cheese are all rich in protein. Try making these delicious make-ahead Cherry Lemon Protein Bars that have a whopping 13g of protein per serving.
According to Lewis, all fruits are rich sources of vitamins, minerals, polyphenols, and antioxidants–and typically the more brightly colored, the more nutritious the fruit is.
“The sugar in the fruit is also tied up with lots of fiber. The fiber in fruit causes the body to slow down the release of sugar and prevent blood sugar from spiking,” added Lewis. “That said, some fruits have more or less sugar as well as more or less fiber.”
Blackberries, strawberries, and raspberries are all rich in fiber.
Lewis says that fermented foods like sauerkraut, kombucha, and kefir help to maintain gut health and starve out bacteria which thrive on a diet rich in sugar.
“By adding in gut-healthy fermented foods that are a source of the good bacteria, you rebalance your gut health and reduce the cravings for sugar,” Lewis said.
It’s no secret that probiotics are an immune-system powerhouse. But did you know that adding probiotic-rich foods can help curb sugar cravings as well? Healthy bacteria go head-to-head with Candida (a type of yeast) for space in the intestines—in one study done on mice, the probiotic Saccharomyces boulardii was found to reduce levels of Candida (3). Foods such as probiotic yogurt are sour because of the good bacteria found in them. They fight off and reduce candida in your body, which is why you reduce sugar cravings.
Yogurt, pickles, and kimchi are all rich in probiotics, but adding Vital Proteins Vanilla and Coconut Collagen Whey to your daily smoothie or coffee is a great supplement.
(1) Jang, Soobin, Chunhoo Cheon, Bo-Hyoung Jang, Sunju Park, So-Mi Oh, Yong-Cheol Shin, and Seong-Gyu Ko. “Relationship Between Water Intake and Metabolic/Heart Diseases: Based on Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.” Osong Public Health and Research Perspectives 7.5 (2016): 289-95. Web.
(2) Westerterp-Plantenga, Margriet S. “Protein intake and energy balance.” Regulatory Peptides 149.1-3 (2008): 67-69. Web.
(3) Ducluzeau, D. and Bensaada, M. Comparative Effect of a Single or Continuous Administration of Saccharomyces Boulardii on the Establishment of Various Strains of Candida in the Digestive Tract of Gnotobiotic Mice. ANN.MICROBIOL.1982; 1338: 491-501.
(4) Popkin BM et al. Water and food consumption patterns of US adults from 1999 to 2001. Obes Res.2005 ; 13 : 2146-2152