Simple Strategies to Crush Cravings

Control Your Appetite: Simple Strategies to Crush Cravings

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It’s 3 PM, and your stomach is growling. Your energy levels have flatlined, and lunchtime feels like years ago. You just resolved to stop afternoon snacking to drop a few pounds. Yet here you sit, exhausted and eyeing the stale muffins in the conference room.

You try to eat healthy. You drink smoothies and choose foods with “low-fat” on the label. But the numbers on the scale keep climbing, even though you go hungry most days. What’s the point of depriving yourself when your skinny jeans never get any closer to fitting and you still feel tired all the time?

If any of that sounds familiar, you’re not alone, and you’re definitely not to blame! From super-sized factory farms to the pharmaceutical industry, there are billions of dollars resting on the fact that you’ll keep eating low-calorie, high-sugar impact, and never lose the weight. It’s time to take back your health.

The strategies below are straightforward and do-able, and they’ll help you crush cravings and burn fat. You’ll see your energy skyrocket and your waist size drop. You can do this! Here’s how:

  1. Stop cutting calories, and go low-sugar impact instead. The nutrition field was built on the idea that cutting calories translates to weight loss. Now we know better! The key to losing belly fat, increasing your energy, and lowering your risk of major disease is NOT to count calories, it’s to eat low-sugar impact. Hidden sugars are everywhere, from fruity salad dressings to “sugar-free” jam. The effects of all that sugar guarantee you’ll pack on pounds, feel fatigued, and suffer from cravings. When you eat sugar you may feel temporarily more energetic, alert, and happier. But then, there’s the crash, when you feel grumpy, tired, achey and brain-fogged.
  1. To lose fat, you have to eat fat. The low-fat boom of the 1980s convinced the public that eating fat made us fat. Wrong! In fact, when you don’t eat fat, your body assumes you’re under threat of starvation. Its response is to hold on to all the fat you have and burn sugar instead. Healthy omega-3 fats from wild-caught fish, olive oil, nuts, coconut milk, avocados, and full-fat dairy (if not intolerant) are key to losing fat, especially around your waistline.
  1. Push the protein – quality counts! Eating plenty of clean, lean protein is vital to weight loss and sustained energy. Foods like organic chicken, grass-fed beef, wild-caught fish, pastured eggs,+full-fat yogurt,+ and beans and legumes are all good choices to help you burn fat and build muscle. Protein shakes (we like Nutragen Pure Protein) are another great option to get the protein you need while boosting your weight loss and energy. (Check out this list of a Dozen Great Protein Sources)
  1. Focus on fiber. Nothing crushes cravings like fiber! It helps you feel full, improves your gut health, and stops blood sugar spikes that can make you feel hungry again soon after meals. Wild rice, beans, and freshly ground flaxseed are great fiber sources, as are fruits and veggies like citrus, apples, raspberries, dark leafy greens, and sweet potatoes. If bowls of asparagus and Brussels sprouts aren’t your fave, try adding Nutragen’s Pure Digestion to your shakes or oatmeal.
  1. Drink more water. The next time you feel hungry or tired, reach for a glass of water. Drinking water has been proven to curb cravings, boost metabolism, and help with weight loss. Being even mildly dehydrated can make your energy levels plummet, so commit to plenty of H2O.
  1. Get good sleep. Skipping sleep starts a chain reaction in your hunger and stress hormones that leads to increased appetite, moodiness, weight gain, and poor blood sugar control. If your life is a non-stop series of snack attacks and energy crashes, you can bet you’re not getting 7-9 hours of deep, restorative rest every night.
  1. Consider taking natural supplements for cravings control. Glutamine, tyrosine, 5-HTP are amino acids that help reduce cravings. Stress reducing herbs such as Rhodiola can help. Chromium balances blood sugar and can help take the edge off cravings. Glucomannan fiber is very helpful to reduce the spikes in sugar and insulin that drive cravings and hunger.
  1. Eat well 80-90% of the time, with a “treat” once or twice per week. Better yet, swap your normal sugar “treats” with a healthier version. If you’re eating sugary foods in the afternoon, you will just end up craving them the rest of the day. We recommended not eating any type of sweet snack after dinner, which interferes with sleep. Another option is to enjoy healthy treat like keto ice cream or other natural low-sugar desserts. You can limit your indulgences to once or twice a week, and you’ll start craving them less.   Keep in mind that you have to be committed to following this plan and keep healthy snacks on hand for the last-minute-munchies.
  1. Manage Your Stress Levels. Stress is a key factor that can trigger sugar cravings so investing a few minutes a day can pay off big-time for your health. Practice breathing exercises, or meditation regularly for 15-20 minutes to help improve your stress. Activities such as jogging, gardening, etc. will both relax and energize your body. Physical activity is critical in maintaining good health while also taking your mind off the sugar fix.
  1. Making changes to your sleep and diet habits may take some time, but stick with it. And if you need a little extra help along the way, it’s okay to call in reinforcements.
  1. Seek Help through Acupuncture. Acupuncture has proven to be one of the ideal ways to help a variety of health problems. Acupuncture helps reduce sugar cravings by reducing stress and harmonizing and balancing the digestion and stabilizing blood sugar.
  1. Try our Nutragen Cleanse to detox, lose those sugar cravings and get to a healthy weight.

Credits for this article: J.J. Virgin, Dr. Mark Hyman, and Dr. Chantelle DeShazer

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