12 Apr Simple Swaps to Satisfy your Sugar and Carb Cravings
Even when you begin changing your eating habits for the better, incorporating cleaner foods and better practices, you can still fall victim to carb and sugar cravings. Sometimes, we attribute these cravings to a bad day at work or a stressful week with the kids, but carb and sugar cravings can also come from physiological imbalances.
When you feel stress, cortisol, the stress hormone, skyrockets along with your blood sugar. To compensate, your body releases the fat storage hormone, insulin, to help bring your blood sugar back to stable. When that happens, the insulin tends to overcompensate, and your blood sugar dips lower than it should. Your body becomes confused and thinks it needs more energy, and thus, a carb or sugar craving arises.
Now that you’re empowered with this knowledge, you can take steps to outsmart your body when it comes to cravings. First, you can take steps to reduce your stress or learn healthy coping mechanisms for when it arises. Next, you can make some simple swaps to satisfy your sugar and carb cravings without derailing your progress.
Here are a few favorite swaps…..
The Salty Swap. Next time you can’t shake your craving for a crunchy, salty snack like potato chips, go for something that gives you what you want in a healthy way. For example, roast chickpeas or air-pop popcorn, sprinkling each with a little sea salt to fulfill your saltiest desires. Another option is carrot and celery sticks with a side of hummus to fill you up and fuel you for the rest of your day.
The Sugary Sweet Swap. Sweet tooth at it again? Next time you’re longing for a dessert, trick your brain with something naturally sweet that isn’t full of refined sugars and processed junk. A square of dark chocolate, as long as it’s at least 80% cacao, with a handful of almonds, is a satisfyingly indulgent choice that won’t derail your healthy habits. You could also have a banana “shake” using almond milk, a dash of cinnamon, a spoonful of nut butter and a few drops of vanilla extract to satisfy your sweet tooth, guilt-free. Or, swap out the vanilla extract with a tablespoon of raw cacao (or 100% cocoa powder) for a chocolatey banana smoothie – and add a handful of spinach to make it even more nutritious.
The Pasta and Bread Swap. There are staple items you may always eat with every meal – because that’s what you’re used to. Rice, pasta, bread, even cereal…these are all high-carb foods that can derail your efforts if you eat them too often. Cauliflower is a more nutritious swap to make pizza crust, breadsticks, mashed “potatoes,” and rice. Using a spiralizer will help you make noodles out of vegetables, like zucchini, carrots and sweet potatoes, that taste amazing too. These vegetable swaps will satiate you, leave you feeling more energized, and provide additional nutrients.
Now that you’ve gotten some ideas on how to tackle those carb cravings — arm yourself with these ingredients in your kitchen at all times, so these swaps become second nature.
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Does this sound familiar?
- You plan to have a few chips, and the next thing you know, the bag is empty!
- You’ve had a rough day, so you “deserve” a glass of wine.
- You swear tonight you aren’t going to eat after dinner, and then you demolish that pint of ice cream on the couch while you watch netflix…..
If you want to reduce your sugar and/or starchy carb cravings, but can’t seem to do it alone…. Join our accelerated 10 Day Sugar Reset program to help you manage your sugar and starchy carb cravings.
Take a break from sugar and starchy carbs to increase your energy, feel more in control of what you eat, avoid the sugar/carb crashes and ultimately have less dependence on sugar and starchy carbs.