Umm, sugar is so yum. How can anyone have coffee or tea without ‘S-U-G-A-R’!! But it is also the most contagious ingredient and the biggest enemy of the heart! So let’s ‘manage’ it. Bring a balance.
1. DIAGNOSE IT CORRECTLY: sugar cravings are a lot more about something else and a lot less about ‘sugar’. We crave sugar for a reason other than the sugar. The sugar has a potential to give our brain ‘happy signals’ so what else is your brain missing which could bring the ‘Happy Feeling’? Love? Nutrition? Food when hungry? Relaxation?
2. EAT MORE DARLING: S-T-O-P starving!! It never helps, not in the short term and it 100% harms in the long-term. You rather eat 6 small meals a day every 2.5 to 3 hours than have 3 large plate-fulls.
3. PLAN AHEAD: What are you eating at the next meal? Decide before you wrap up this one. That way you are not scrambling for food when your stomach is screaming ‘Hunger’. What choices to make at the party / travel? E.g. eat ahead and then leave, pack health food, plan to visit places that give you healthy food options, etc.
4. SEEING IS BELIEVING: Our brain is so programmed to ‘see’ things before interacting with them. So let your brain interact with the healthy stuff more and you have won your battle half way through. Right now check what your pantry and snack drawer shows you when you open it? Do you see more sugar or more health? Also, keep your meals READY in See Through containers right at your vision.
5. ATTRACTION IS THE KEY: You are building a RELATIONSHIP with your food, so better make it attractive!!! While you decide on MORE salads, soups, oats and juices, add some nuts, seeds, cilantro, dates, raisins, strawberries or whatever your require to make your body CRAVE for the healthy food in the same way as it craves for the sugary foods.
6. RAKE THE FAKE: Rake out or throw away all your fake sugars – sugar free, diet cokes, Splenda, etc. are very harmful to our brain since they are more processed and contain essences or ingredients that are chemically harmful. You rather have a whole bar of chocolate with sugar in it than have one piece of sugar free chocolate. Your body can fight out the former much more easily since it is much less complex food!
7. CUT THE BRANCH: Stop ‘Hanging Out with your Guilt’ forever. You ate it, that moment is gone forever! You criticizing yourself, thinking about it a 1000 times, beating yourself up will not help one bit. Rather take a pen-paper, write your next goal, stick it on the wall
8. WHO ARE YOUR REALLY?: Ask the Sugar – “Who are you really?” Is the sugar your hurt from past relationships, resentment and bitterness towards your parents, partner or friends? Is it your habit from childhood to protect yourself or to make yourself feel better? Is it your way to relive your happy moments that you miss or just the lack of enough sleep?
9. SLEEP EARLY: Do this for 30 days in a row, sleep before 10.45pm and a 100% you will see a dip in your addiction, weight, stress and a growth in your health. Now, I am in the challenge too, I need to be accountable as well.
10. FOOD JOURNAL: My Dietician Anuvi taught me this in 2006 and it has been my savior whenever I put my mind to it. Note down every little thing you ate, in each of its amount and time of the day and run back on your notes each week. You will surprised how many times you told you mind – “I am only having a little bit” Food Journals have great ‘mirroring’ power, use it to your benefit.
11. KNOW YOUR FOOD: Carbs is also sugar. The chapatti and grapes are sweet tasting because they have carbs which convert into sugar in our body. Do your best to include more proteins, fiber and less sugary veggies in your diet.
12. BUNK THE CALORIES: In the 18 kgs I shed in a year, not once have I looked at calories. Eat clean carbs, more protein and some fats.
Article Credit: Inspired by Kathy – my once upon a time, Fitness Trainer Friend
Image Credit: Flickr found on Google images.