Foods that Help with Cravings
When you think about food cravings, typically the first thing that comes to mind would be some type of junk food. Something that is high in calories, low in nutrients, processed and quite unhealthy. Is that what you tend to crave when a craving kicks in? What is your go-to craving — chocolate chip cookies? A big bowl of ice cream? I tend to crave salty crunchy snacks these days – especially at the end of the day when I’m tired.
I’ll be honest with you — I believe in a balanced life. I’m not saying to never enjoy a sweet treat again. The issue with ingesting processed foods and the chemicals that come along with them on an ongoing basis is the danger of addiction. We absolutely don’t want that, as it can disrupt the way our bodies function and wreak havoc in more ways than you can imagine.
So, if you feel like you may be addicted to sugar and/or processed foods, there is something you can do to help. There are many foods you can add into your diet to balance your microbiome and get your good bacteria back to a healthy place. These foods are generally fermented foods that are filled with the good bacteria that your body needs to balance itself again and rid you of those cravings.
These fermented foods can include kimchi, kombucha, sauerkraut and kefir to name a few. I’d love for you to choose at least one of these to add into your diet this week and get that good bacteria back into your body (I’m a fan of kombucha – feels like a treat since I tend to stick to water throughout the day). Taking a probiotic on a daily basis will help balance your bacteria as well — my favorite brand is USANA. You can check out a cute, short informational video here.
Food Swaps for Popular Cravings…
Another of my favorite ways to combat cravings is to trade out unhealthy foods with beneficial ones.
If you’re craving potato chips… Try some raw veggie sticks & healthy dip (hummus, Greek yogurt, black bean etc) instead for that crunch. You can also try some nuts or clean, gluten free crackers like Mary’s Gone Crackers or Simple Mills.
If you’re craving soda… Try some sparkling water such as La Croix. There are so many flavors to choose from; you’re bound to find one you love — and you can finally ditch that soda! As mentioned above, I love kombucha so I also recommend that as a soda replacement. Synergy has some amazing flavors.
If you’re craving a milkshake… Try a green smoothie instead to quench your desire for something cold and sweet. If greens aren’t your thing yet, blend frozen banana with dairy free milk and cocoa powder for a chocolatey treat. Frozen banana blended with your favorite berries is also a nice replacement for ice cream.
Another helpful tip that I implement is to indulge mindfully. When you do decide to have a treat, enjoy a smaller portion than you’d even like to have. Teaching yourself restraint and how to indulge mindfully is an incredibly useful tool that you will carry with you always.
Remember – the more nutritious your food is (whole foods that are minimally processed), the less your body craves junk.
As always, I leave you with a recipe. Today you get a crucnhy, savory snack: