It’s been a stressful morning at work, but you survived that conference call “from hell” as well as a few other minor obstacles, so now you’re wicked hungry. What do you do? You hit the break room and scarf down two remotely stale jelly doughnuts. How do you feel? Well, you’ve satisfied your cravings, but you can’t help feeling a little out of control. Your blood sugar has peaked and crashed, your insulin levels are out of whack, and you’re feeling tired. It won’t be long before you’re hungry again, for all the wrong foods- pizza, candy, chips, etc. There’s a better plan of action to conquer those hunger pangs that wreak havoc with your waistline and energy levels. Here are some surefire suggestions to help you to eat healthier as you keep those pesky cravings at bay.
First of all, never ever starve yourself. Skipping a healthy, substantial breakfast and then not eating all day will result in a sluggish metabolism as you lose not only fat, but valuable lean muscle as well. In addition, you will actually store fat more easily and rapidly since your body will sense that you are starving and denying it proper and sufficient nutrition. A healthy, low-fat breakfast of carbs and protein will light your fire and keep you fueled and less susceptible to sudden sugary junk food cravings during the day. Although it requires some extra planning, make sure to prepare and keep handy simple meals and snacks so that you can eat every 2-3 hours throughout the day. Chicken breasts, sliced turkey, yogurt, fresh fruit, bags of chopped veggies or nuts are healthy alternatives when those cravings hit hard.
Second, keep unhealthy foods out of sight, out of mind and out of your mouth. Clean out your kitchen cupboards and fridge and restock them with fresh, healthy snacks and easy to fix meals. At work, fill your desk with protein bars, sacks of nuts and fresh fruits and protein drinks; spruce up the break room by tossing stale trays of doughnuts, cookies, and other tempting junk. When you go to a party, take a fresh fruit or veggie tray with you so that you’ll have something to snack on as others chow down on ribs and wings. You’ll also impress your host with your generosity.
Third, remember to drink plenty of water all day long. Did you know that often when you feel a sudden fit of hunger, it’s just a sign that you are dehydrated? It’s true, and you can bust that craving just by chugging a big tall glass of water! Try adding some freshly squeezed lemon in your H20 for added zest and a Vitamin C boost for the immune system. Steer clear of sugary sodas with their extra calories, loaded energy drinks, and caffeinated beverages like coffee and tea which act as diuretics. Diet sodas are just as bad for these and various other reasons, so beware, and stay away from them.
Finally, don’t deny yourself an occasional tempting treat. If you have a sweet tooth, a chocolate craving, or a hankering for something salty, it is easier to treat yourself with a little piece of your favorite snack throughout the week, but I mean a little piece. Reward yourself, but avoid binging!
Tom Bonanti is a certified personal trainer and licensed massage therapist (MA#40288) with his own studio and one on one gym www.pumpnincgym.com at 1271 NE 9th Avenue, Ft. Lauderdale, Fl. 33304. Contact Tom with questions [email protected] or call today (954) 557-1119 to schedule a free fitness consultation.