Eat a real meal. If you are craving something sweet, check to see if you are just hungry. Eating a real, healthy meal can decrease a sweet craving triggered by low energy. When choosing food for your meal. pick healthy foods that will provide energy, such as protein, fiber, and complex carbohydrates.
- Increase protein in your meals, such as fish, chicken, lean red meats, and nuts.
- Avoid packaged meals that are full of sugar and bad ingredients such as salt.
Consume more fiber. Fiber helps you to maintain healthy sugar levels in the body, which will reduce the sugar drop that leads to your cravings. It will also help you feel full for longer amounts of time. Look for foods with larger amounts of fiber, which help fill you up.
- Pick foods such as whole grains, broccoli, artichokes, whole wheat pasta, raspberries, and various beans.
- The daily recommendation about of fiber is 35 to 45 grams for women and 40 to 50 for men.
Have small meals. When sweet cravings are triggered with lower energy through-out the day, another strategy is to spread out meals throughout the day. This will help you avoid the energy decline that comes from periods of not eating.
- Some research suggest five to six smaller meals versus three big meals help maintain a full feeling thought-out the day. Try to increase the healthy amount of calories you intake per day when adding more meals, but don’t eat five to six normal sized meals. This will increase your caloric intake by a large amount.
Read labels. Sugar is hidden in most processed foods. If you cannot read the ingredients or there are a lot of them, it is probably high in sugar. Other common names for types of sugar are agave syrup, brown sugar, corn sweetener, corn syrup, dextrose, fructose, glucose, lactose, maltose, sucrose, high-fructose corn syrup, fruit juice concentrate, honey, invert sugar, malt sugar, molasses, raw sugar, sugar, and syrup.
Choose better sweets. Sweets do not have to be complicated, super fancy, or a huge dessert. It might be best to choose a simple sweet that isn’t full of processed, unnatural ingredients. Eating simple sweets also means avoiding processed foods which are often higher in sugar. Try other options such as fruits and dark chocolate.
- Avoid candy, cakes, cookies, and ice cream.
Drink more water. One of the easiest ways to cut sweets out and decrease your cravings is to drink more water. This will help you avoid sugary beverages as well as keep you hydrated and healthier. Avoid drinks with high sugar such as sports drinks, soft drinks, and some fruit drinks.
- If you don’t like plain water, try all naturally flavored seltzer water.
Skip the artificial sweeteners. Artificial sweeteners are not a solution to avoiding or decreasing sugar cravings. There is also mixed research around the impact of artificial sweeteners and the increased risk of cancer. Artificial sweeteners include saccharin, aspartame, acesulfame potassium, sucralose, cyclamate sodium, and neotame.
- Find a healthier sweetener such as stevia extract. It has no calories and is naturally derived, which means it comes from the stevia plant instead of from chemicals like artificial sweeteners . Stevia has also demonstrated effectiveness in treating high blood pressure and intestinal discomfort. However, stevia has been known to interact with some medications, such as anti-inflammatory and anti-fungal medications. Ask you doctor if stevia is safe if you take any of these medications.