The holidays are around the corner, and the weather has started to become cooler. You are walking home from dance class and pass a McDonald’s, Starbucks, Shake Shack, the $1 pizza joint, Auntie Annie’s, Cake Boss, Amy’s Bread, and numerous other junk food places. It’s a tease to your stomach once you smell the delicious grease from the fried food or you imagine the taste of a sweet something. As a dancer you know you should just keep going home and down a bottle of water/eat a healthy snack. Food cravings affect everyone. Some people are more affected than others and and it can seem impossible to stop. Below are some helpful tips to stop the food cravings.
1. Distract yourself.
Often food cravings happen when you are feeling sad or stressed or angry or vulnerable because comfort food gives emotional comfort. This is ingrained in us as children. A good way to distract yourself is to call a friend, go exercise, or go someplace; anything that will change your focus.
2. Know your weaknesses.
There are the cravings food that you can munch on and feel satisfied after having just a bit. Then there are the foods that you will devour and still want more. Be aware which foods you should avoid and do so.
3. Do not keep unhealthy foods at home.
You are less likely to leave your house to find junk food if it’s not in your house or cupboards. Junk food is on display enough outside of your home, there is no need to make the temptation worse by bringing it inside your house. You will not think about it if you do not see it. If you cannot get your mind off of it all day, then go buy a snack size amount so you are not obsessing over it.
4. Substitute it with a healthier choice.
If you’re craving a sweet, try grapes or prunes which are naturally sweet.
If you’re craving salt, try a pickle which does not have the trans fat like potato chips.
If you’re craving creamy, try low-fat Greek yogurt which is lower in sugar than other yogurts/ice creams.
5. Cleanse your mouth.
Brush your teeth, chew gum, pop a mint, or swish with mouthwash when you are having a craving. This will cleanse your taste buds and will help distract you from wanting your craving. Nothing tastes good after that minty fresh clean taste is in your mouth. If you gave into your craving, cleanse your mouth afterwards to prevent further cravings.
6. Negotiate with yourself.
Most cravings last 20 – 30 minutes. Make a deal with yourself to do something else for an hour. Drink a glass of water and occupy yourself with another task. It could be cleaning, rearranging your room, or getting yourself beautified. After the hour is up, you may have forgotten why you even started in the first place.