11 ways to curb those unhealthy food cravings

Chewing some fresh, minty gum is among the most straightforward ways to resist food cravings  it gives you the sensation of eating, without eating
Chewing some fresh, minty gum is among the most straightforward ways to resist food cravings it gives you the sensation of eating, without eating

Eating more protein, tackling stress and getting a good night’s sleep are among the best tips and tricks to curb unwanted cravings according to experts.

Specialists from health and fitness site Vivotion.com have revealed 11 ways those who want to resist unhealthy foods can reduce the number of cravings they experience and avoid giving in to their desires.

Some calorie conscious Brits believe positive dietary choices can be quickly undone by a sudden, unexpected urge for a treat, so experts have listed 11 ways that they can maintain a healthy diet even when temptation strikes.

A spokesperson for Vivotion.com said: “Resisting food cravings can be easier said than done for even the most determined.

“Balanced, nutritious meals and a sustainable exercise regime might not be fully effective if you give in to a quick cookie or two when you feel you shouldn’t, for example.

“But our researchers have now revealed their best advice for stopping and resisting food temptation, to help Brits who want to steer clear of unhealthy snacks.”

Here is the Vivotion.com list of 11 tips and tricks to help curb cravings:

1. Chew gum

Chewing some fresh, minty gum is among the most straightforward ways to resist food cravings – it gives you the sensation of eating, without eating.

2. Step away from temptation

If you feel the urge for some biscuits, often the best way to avoid giving in to your craving is to step away from the cookie jar.

When you’re tempted by an unhealthy snack, try physically or mentally distancing yourself from it by going for a walk, doing household chores, completing a puzzle or checking through your emails.

3. Plan your meals

Organising your food for the day ahead in a morning can remove uncertainty and spontaneity from your diet – if you already know what you’re going to have for lunch, dinner or a snack, a craving is significantly less likely.

To avoid becoming extremely hungry, which is one of the most common causes of unhealthy food cravings, eat regular meals every day and have a selection of healthy snacks readily available.

4. Eat more protein

Consuming more protein could reduce overeating by supressing your appetite – it can reduce the desire to snack by leaving you feeling full and satisfied for longer.

5. Get more sleep

Appetite can be greatly influenced by hormones that fluctuate throughout the day, which can be disrupted if you don’t get enough sleep at night and lead to strong food cravings.

6. Have a glass of water

What feels like hunger or a particular food craving can often just be thirst, so before gorging on unhealthy extra snacks, try drinking some water and waiting a few minutes – if the craving fades, your body just needed rehydrating.

7. Tackle stress

Being unhappy or under pressure can often lead to a desire to comfort eat, so attempt to identify the source of any problems and try to find a solution, to avoid cravings that come from stress.

8. Go shopping after you’ve eaten

Grocery shopping on an empty stomach is probably the easiest way to induce an unnecessary and unhealthy food craving.

If you haven’t eaten for hours before entering the supermarket, it’s hardly surprising if you’re suddenly tempted by the fresh smell of the bakery.

9. Don’t skip breakfast

Putting yourself into calorie deficit before the day has even got going will more than likely lead to major food cravings later in the morning.

10. Keep the cupboards bare

If you always seem to have a desire for crisps, for example, an easy solution is to not have so many packets lying around the house, so that you’re forced to choose a healthier alternative snack when your craving strikes.

11. Start a food diary

Tracking what you eat and it’s nutritional information may guilt-trip you into saying no to your next unhealthy craving – writing down your meals and snacks can be a real eye opener.