“I could really go for (insert food of choice here) now!” Admit it--how many times have you said these words this week? Once, twice, thrice? Here at FN, we’re not strangers to cravings ourselves. We could be right in the middle of writing an article when all of a sudden, we’d feel the need to snack on chocolate chip cookies. But these are merely cravings—they’re all in our heads. In fact, according to WebMD, “Areas of the brain responsible for memory and sensing pleasure are partially to blame for keeping those food cravings coming.” But we already know that, don’t we? The problem is, how do we keep ourselves from giving in? Here are a few suggestions:

1. Think of the consequences. When you feel a craving surfacing in your thoughts, think of what would probably happen if you do give in. Will it reset your diet plan? Will it make fitting into your dress next to impossible? By focusing on the aftermath, you would be able to persuade yourself to save the munchies for later.

2. Hydrate. If you’re not particularly hungry, opt to drink water. It will make you feel fuller, and prevent you from going through with your bingeing plans. Besides, you could probably use more fluids anyway.

3. Eat with your five senses. If you keep rushing through your meals like there’s no tomorrow, you’ll be more likely to give in to your cravings later on. However, if you enjoyed your last meal, you’d feel a lot fuller.

4. Keep calm and carry on. According to WebMD, cravings kick in especially when we feel stressed or anxious. We may find ourselves craving for carbohydrates because they boost our serotonin levels, which in turn, make us calm. We may also crave for a combination of fat and sugar which supposedly has the same effect on our body.

5. Set specific limits. If you must give in (meaning you can no longer concentrate on work unless you satisfy your craving), keep your consumption to a minimum. Instead of a whole slice of chocolate cake, eat only half.

(Photo by Kimberly Vardeman via Flickr Creative Commons)

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