How To Cure A Craving

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Today was a verrry long day. It’s Tuesday and the week seems to be dragging on slowly, I’m sure this has to do with the fact that I’m going away on Thursday. Today though, I felt kind of down and I’m not really sure why. Because of this, all morning the vending machine was calling for me to get Cheetos, and this afternoon (after I had my salad for lunch like a good girl) all I could think about was delicious chocolate. This post was a life-saver for me- and my diet!

Four ways to resist your “must have french fries” urges.
Taken from Glamour health section of January 2015.

No one has ever smelled cookies baking in the oven and said, “Gross”; as humans, we’re hardwired to like caloric food. But you can outfox that genetic predisposition: Tufts University researchers found that if you stick to healthy nutritional habits for just two weeks, your brain actually starts to prefer good-for-you-food.  “You’re building healthy neural connections that never existed and putting the bad ones to sleep,” explains study author and nutrition professor Susan B. Roberts, PhD. But how do you survive those two weeks while your grey matter reboots? Resist temptation by using these research-proven strategies.

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Eat Something Healthy With Your Junk.
A Duke University study found that people preferred one cookie with three apple slices to four cookies; researchers saw similar results with baby carrots and potato chips. “Eating a quarter of a serving of an unhealthy food and making up the difference with something nutritious addresses both your desire for something tasty and any health goals you might have,” says researcher Peggy J. Liu, who calls this strategy “vice-virtue bundling”. Try it!
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Distract Yourself.
Playing an engaging, highly visual digital game (CandyCrush Saga or Flow Free, anyone?) for just three minutes slashes food and drink cravings, according to a study by Plymouth University in England. Why? Because all that hand-eye coordination leaves little brain space left to think about ice cream or other treats, says author and psychology professor Jackie Andrade, Ph.D.  Say you’re thinking about chocolate: “That image in your mind sustains a craving,” she explains. “But it’s hard to conjure up an enticing image while you’re watching a constantly changing display”.

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Break a Sweat.
“Aerobic exercise is one of the best ways to strengthen the area of the brain responsible for dietary self-control,” says Peter Hall, Ph.D., a kinesiology professor at University of Waterloo in Ontario.  He found that people with decreased activity in this neural region, called the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, eat more junk food than people with normal levels do.  Aim for at least 150 minutes of cardio each week, or about 20 minutes a day. Bonus: Exercisers are much more likely to get a good night’s sleep, and being well rested has also been shown to boost your anticraving willpower.

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Eat Healthiest When You’re Starving.
And here’s the key truth you can use to train your brain: studies show that the foods you much on when you’re hungry are the ones you’ll eventually start to crave. So if your appetite ramps up a few hours after lunch, plan ahead to have a snack with fiber and protein, like whole wheat crackers and peanut butter, or grapes and a hard boiled egg, on hand. Do it ofter, says Roberts, and those are what you’ll want to reach for.