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Food and self-control tricks

By October 15, 2008 - 2:18pm
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I'm not an over-eater but go through periods during the day when I crave sweets or salty snacks. It's not hunger, just a craving.

I find that brushing my teeth helps, and having a piece of fruit does too, especially to curb sweet cravings.

Does anyone have any other tips or tricks that work for them? Having just a little chocolate or a few chips to satisfy the cravings doesn't work so well! TIA!

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Thanks everyone for your great suggestions!

For me, I just allow myself two 100-calorie snacks (or, there about) per day. I eat plenty at meals, and try to control portion sizes. So, it's all about choices, and where I want to "spend" those calories each day.

I think about my extra food as money in the bank. Do I want to spend it all this afternoon on a 200-calorie snack? Am I going out to dinner with my husband in the evening, and want to have some wine with dinner?

If I do want BOTH options, then I make a plan to workout longer the next time, to "put more money in the bank" (so to speak). It makes that 200-calorie cookie look different if I know I have to jog 2 miles! :-)

So, my plan isn't rigid, as I've allowed space to make different options, while maintaining a healthy weight. Not exactly sure what I'm going to do about Thanksgiving yet, but probably just "control myself" the week leading up to the day with not having extra snacks, so that I can enjoy myself for the day. I think one day out of the year that you "eat until stuffed" is part of a normal eating pattern (as long as it's truly balanced, physically and emotionally) the rest of the year.

October 16, 2008 - 1:40pm

I find that the flavor of cinnamon gum is really satisfying when I'm wanting to snack. It's not a sweet flavor so it doesn't play into my cravings for sweets or chocolate, and it's one of those flavors (like toothpaste!) that is so dominant, other things don't sound as good after you've had it.

I'm in your camp -- there's no such thing as a "few" chips or a "taste" of chocolate. In fact, some of that can make me want more.

Try the bottled unsweetened green teas that some companies are making now. They seem satisfying in a completely different way, especially if it's that time in the day when you're wanting a little pick-me-up.

Brushing your teeth is a great idea. I'll put that in my own bag of tricks.

October 16, 2008 - 8:28am

Water suppresses the appetite, especially ice water.

As far as a late night snack, I happen to like mine. It's very light - a cheese stick and some fruit with hot tea or a glass of water. I don't get up in the middle of the night or in the morning with a rumbling tummy. Plus, the fiber of the apple helps the bodily functions.

October 15, 2008 - 6:11pm

I know how hard this is...especially when working from home!
What helps me is keeping going with my working out...when I see results, I am inspired to eat well.
But, in the moment, it sounds like you have it down!
I sometimes have a small bowl of dried fruit and nuts and mix a few teeny pieces of dark chocolate into it...it really works for me! Dark chocolate in small amounts is actually healthy anyhow!
Eating little and often is better for you than three big meals a day. If you "graze", you end up having lots of teeny meals a day....maybe some tuna, a few walnuts, a boiled egg, some hummus and pita chips, then you are satisfying cravings while eating healthily and not really doing without.

October 15, 2008 - 2:51pm
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