Managing Your Sugar Cravings
Two hours after eating breakfast, you catch yourself opening your desk drawer at work in order to grab a candy bar. You silently chide yourself for wanting to eat your third, sugary treat at work this week. Despite your best efforts, you can’t seem to control your raging, sweet tooth. If this scenario sounds frightfully familiar, one or more of the following common causes of sugar cravings might be to blame.
Diet Soda Addiction
If diet soda is your beverage of choice, you might want to switch to water. Amazingly, diet soft drinks are hundreds, or even thousands, of times sweeter than real sugar. When you drink them regularly, your brain becomes programmed to prefer sweet tasting foods over every other type of food. While your favorite brand of diet soda might contain little to no calories, it may make you crave a doughnut, a piece of chocolate cake, or a slice of pecan pie after you drink it.
A Stressful Schedule
Do family, work, and social responsibilities leave you feeling stressed much of the time? Unfortunately, stress seems to trigger cravings of sweet foods in some people. Whenever you feel stressed, your body increases its production of the hormone cortisol. As your cortisol levels rise, your sugar cravings may increase too. Whenever you start to feel tense, consider taking a brisk walk, a scenic bike ride, or a refreshing swim instead of binging on sweet treats.
Deficit of Serotonin
The neurotransmitter serotonin is responsible for feelings of happiness. Because consuming sugar can raise your serotonin levels, you might always feel temporarily better after downing your favorite sweet treat. Unfortunately, relying on unhealthy foods to improve your mood will expand your waistline. Thankfully, some healthy foods are also believed to boost serotonin levels. These foods include:
- Pumpkin seeds
- Brown rice
- Whole grain cereals
In order to lose weight and keep it off for good, learning to manage your sugar cravings is paramount. To help you accomplish this seemingly impossible task, investigate the possible causes of your desire for sweet treats. The aforementioned reasons for sugar cravings are a great place to start.
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