For many people, cravings could be the downfall to all their hard work when trying to live a healthy lifestyle. The one thing we need to realize is that even though a lot of us get cravings it isn’t a part of us and we can get over them.
But before we go into teaching you how to get over your cravings we have to first make sure you can identify what a craving is.
It is very easy to mistake a craving for a hunger cue; it’s an understandable mistake. The simplest way to differentiate between a craving and a hunger cue is: when hunger strikes you just want to eat, anything really; when you are craving something you want to eat a particular food.
A good trick is to wait a little while. If the feeling goes away it is just a craving, if the feeling is still there you are probably hungry.
You should also note that to satisfy a craving it only takes a few bites. If after having a couple of bits your craving doesn’t go away – note to self: you’re hungry so stop eating what you were craving and find yourself some real food.
The best way to get over a craving is to not get them at all.
I am sure you are wondering, “How is that even possible, it comes on its own.”
Well the truth of the matter is in most cases cravings come because of a life occurrence or event. For example, when you feel stressed, happy, angry, feeling down about yourself (just to name a few) it causes you to crave foods that you associate with comfort.
These situations are called trigger points. You must figure out your trigger points and stop yourself from falling in to the trap so you will never have to face your cravings in the first place.
Trigger points are important to find but sometimes we can’t help it and the cravings come anyway. What can you possibly do then?
The first thing you must do is notice that the cravings aren’t a part of you; it’s just your brain telling you that you’re craving something.
Now, I’m not saying that a craving is a bunch of nonsense and you need to just man-up, not at all. What I am saying is that the cravings are coming from your brain, they are real, but you don’t have to act upon the brain massages.
I know it is hard and can be uncomfortable at times not to act upon what your brain is telling you but you must know that the more times you act upon your brain messages the stronger the cravings become.
To help you get over the uncomfortable sensation and help you on the road to breaking the habit of giving in there are 2 major steps you can take:
1. Notice & Name
You first must notice that the cravings are your brain telling you to do it. This can easily be done by just being conscious and becoming aware of what is going on.
Now that you have read this blog and have become aware that cravings are just a brain message and isn’t something you need to act upon you can start noticing the craving for what it is.
Once you notice what the cravings are you must name it for what it is. This would be a simple action of naming it “craving” or you could even get creative!
The point of this exercise is for you to become consciously aware of what is happening. It isn’t good enough to know that cravings are just from the brain and you don’t have to act on it. You must become conscious about it while it is actually happing in your daily life. This is what will help you break the habit.
Once you have noticed and named the craving as it is happening you don’t want to push it away and say it is nothing.
Unfortunately, for a lot of people, cravings are so engrained into our system that ignoring the cravings won’t work in the long haul. Before you know it you will give in and make yourself feel worthless and you can’t better yourself. That is the last thing we want to happen.
Instead what you want to do is refocus your energy on something else – something that is productive to you, while at the same time tell yourself that the craving will go away. It might take 10 min, it might take a couple of hours but the cravings are going to go away!
If you don’t have anything you can focus on try and postpone your action.
Tell yourself that you are going to wait 15 min before your going to act on your brain message. When the 15 min are over try and hold off for another 15 min until eventually the craving will go away.
To sum it all up, cravings aren’t part of you and shouldn’t hold you back from having the body of your dreams. You must take matters into your own hands and change the way you act when you start craving unhealthy foods.