Personally, I don't think that giving up sweets is a good idea if you're trying to overcome sugar cravings. Why? Because sugar cravings are the effect. Not the cause. And fixing the cause is what helps us not have cravings...not avoiding the effect. Make sense?
In this 4-Part Sugar series, I'm going to walk you through how to overcome feeling out of control, without driving yourself crazy trying to quit sugar cold turkey.
Here's what you can expect from the series:
- 5 Reasons Why You Crave Sugar in the First Place
- 5 Misconceptions on the Best Way to Beat Sugar Cravings
- 4 Easy Ways to Stop Sugar Cravings (Even if You're an Addict)
- Dessert Revamp: Free downloadable guide to having the desserts you love while simultaneously overcoming sugar cravings!
I'm going to cover some common pieces of advice I hear about how to overcome sugar cravings. Now, I don't think these concepts are wrong, but I do think that they get misinterpreted by people and in many cases, in a way that makes the sugar cravings worse.
1) Misconception: "Increase your protein"
On one hand, I do agree that your body needs protein as it helps control blood sugar levels. But the thing is, I also believe that when people hear that they "need more protein", they head straight for the animal products like chicken or beef.
And when you have heavy animal protein (which is considered very contractive energy in Food Energetics), the more likely you are to crave something expansive, which is...sugar!
Think about it...are you more likely to crave ice cream after having something like pumpkin soup, or after having a big juicy steak? The steak, right?
So, trying to simultaneously quit sugar while also adding in more foods that create sugar cravings doesn't sound like a great idea.
2) Misconception: "Drink More Water"
The idea is that sometimes your body just needs more water, which is why you're having sugar cravings.
Most people who crave sugar are also people who eat foods that are dry or lack water content. Like a sandwich, for example. The water has been baked out of the bread, and cold cuts don't contain water content in the first place.
Dry foods tend to be more "contractive" in food energetics, which means you're more likely to crave something expansive, which is sugar.
If you start focusing on selecting foods that have a higher water content instead of eating dry foods and then dousing yourself with more water, you're more likely to reduce your sugar cravings.
Why? Because the foods that have more water content are fruits and vegetables, which have the nutrients and flavors you need to reduce a sweet tooth.
3) Misconception: "Eat Fruit, Instead"
If you're already at the point where you have an intense sugar craving, then trying to substitute your craving for fruit will feel like torture (well, at least, it certainly did for me!).
Why? Because fruit has a very different texture and oral experience than eating something like cake. Apples are crunchy, cold, and have a tarte sweetness. Cake is soft, has a subtler (but defined) sweetness, and makes you feel relaxed.
The experience themselves are very different.
Okay, so now that you understand some misconceptions about the best way to go about overcoming sugar cravings, let's continue on with the series!