Food for Thought

Amen Clinic Article

6 Ways to Outsmart Your Cravings

Do you struggle with a lack of willpower and self-discipline? If you see a tray of warm, fragrant brownies
or a deliciously cheesy pizza, is there just no stopping you?

For many of us, cravings can be the culprit that derails our good intentions to stick with a brain-healthy
program. However, you can make simple changes to your daily habits in order to get better control of
your cravings. Here are 6 secrets for conquering your cravings.

  1. Keep Your Blood Sugar Balanced

What we and other researchers have found is that when your blood sugar drops, the blood flow to your
brain decreases. This means you are more prone to making bad decisions because you do not have full
access to your brain function.

So how do you keep your blood sugar balanced?

    • Eat frequent small meals throughout the day
    • Make sure to start your day with breakfast – skipping it only makes you more likely to make poor
      choices later on
    • Stay away from simple sugars and refined, processed foods because they cause your blood sugar
      to spike and drop erratically as well as work on the pleasure centers of the brain leading to addiction
  1. Get Rid Of Artificial Sweeteners

These substances are up to 600 times sweeter than sugar which leads to your taste buds and brain
expecting sweeter and sweeter foods which can stimulate cravings. Additionally, artificial sweeteners
activate the appetite centers of the brain making you crave even more food and more sugar.

  1. Stress Management Program

Anything stressful can trigger certain hormones that activate your cravings , making you believe that
you NEED the mashed potatoes, macaroni and cheese, or ice cream. Chronic stress has been
implicated in obesity, as well as addictions, anxiety and depressive disorders, Alzheimer’s disease,
heart disease, and a host of immune disorders, including cancer.

Utilize techniques like:

  1. Outsmart The Food Triggers

Are you triggered at the movie theater to want to eat popcorn? Does going to your mother’s house
always make you want to eat her homemade pie?

Know the people, places, and things that fuel your cravings and plan ahead for your vulnerable times.
Eat a light protein-rich snack before going to your mother’s house or bring your own brain-healthy
snack to the movies.

  1. Deal With Hidden Food Allergies

Hidden food allergies and food sensitivities can trigger cravings. For example, did you know that if
have wheat gluten or milk allergies and you eat wheat or dairy products, it can reduce blood flow
to the brain and decrease your judgment?

That makes you more likely to give in to your cravings . In addition, many of the symptoms associated
with food allergies, such as headaches, sleep problems, lack of concentration, and anxiety, can
increase stress and cravings. If you suspect food allergies or sensitivities, ask your doctor to test
you for it or try an elimination diet.

    • Use Supplements To Deal With Cravings

Research has found that increasing omega-3 intake can actually decrease cravings for things like
nicotine, alcohol, and sugar.

Additionally, BrainMD’s Craving Control contains six active ingredients that work synergistically to
help calm the craving centers in the brain, balance blood sugar and insulin levels, and promote a
positive mood with clinically studied, all-natural ingredients. In addition, it can diminish the frequency
and intensity of your cravings, helping you to more effectively achieve better control over your behavior.