When I was a kid I would lay in bed at night and dream that the world was made of food.
The clouds would be marshmallows and the tree stumps were chocolate covered candy bars. I would dream that I would run around stuffing my face and eating the world and it’s deliciousness.
Never getting full or never getting sick.
On top of my twisted imagination, I practically ate this way outside of my dreams. Nothing could stop me from the two pieces of cake, the heaping amounts of ice cream, and my uncontrollable obsession with Peeps and M&M’s. Yes, you could confuse my appetite of that of a hungry teenage boy or a 35 year old man, but I was neither. Just a ten year old girl, eating the food I loved and definitely looking like it. I laugh now as I think of myself back then and how I never imagined the real reason why I couldn’t get the boys to like me. (Unless they were…creepy.)
I mean, did I really think I looked attractive with 2 large cookies on my desk next to my cheesy pizza as I stuffed my mouth and wiped my greasy face with that dirty napkin. Not to mention, I didn’t have the best manors…Literally. With all the ice cream I consumed I had bad gas (we say boofs), and more than once I let it rip in the middle of silent reading…Sexy. All because I couldn’t say no to my double scooped strawberry cheesecake ice cream that I often got after school.
I was a sweets whore.
Over the years I’ve obviously grown up and learned to control my issues, including the boofs, and although I still dream of running through a field of chocolate with my mouth wide open, I keep the reality of my real life under more control.
-I’ve learned how to tackle my sweets cravings.
-I’ve still enjoyed a healthy moderation of sweets (mainly chocolate) on a daily basis w/o going crazy and sucking face with a carton of Ben & Jerry’s.
-And, I haven’t felt like I was missing out ONE BIT!
I’m going to be honest, I crave sweets periodically through out the day, practically after every meal. I don’t know why, and I probably should seek counseling. But I HAVE managed to conquer those cravings as soon as they happen, all the while maintaining a healthy weight. (Except for the fact that my eggo is prego right now…I’m growin’ and I ain’t stoppin’!)
I really believe it’s true that we tend to overeat or snack on unhealthy foods when we aren’t eating the right foods through out the day. This includes getting enough protein, and foods that will keep us full and feeling good. If we eat foods that do little to us nutritionally, and more so don’t make us full enough, make us feel sick, and give us a ‘crash’ a few hours later, we are more likely to make the wrong choices with out next food choice. Foods that contain an unhealthy amount of fat, hidden sugars, and processed chemicals are addicting and if we eat them regularly, we will become addicted to them. We will crave them, and want them and it will be harder to make a healthier choice. So eat what’s good for you often.
AND, on a positive note, if you eat a well balanced and healthy diet daily, when you make an unhealthy choice it will be extremely easier to go back to eating healthy afterwards.
2. Drink water.
Every time you start to feel hungry or get that sweet craving, have a glass of water. I cannot begin to tell you how much this has helped me. I recently saw on twitter that someone threw berries and lemon into their water and it looked SO refreshing! I’ve been doing this often and I love it! Lemon/Lime/or Berry water can fill you up, and maybe even satisfy just what your body needs. We’ve heard it before; sometimes when we think we are hungry, we are really thirsty.
3. Eat fruit.
It’s no joke that I could eat a whole watermelon and a bag of grapes to myself. Eating sweet and cold (even frozen) fruit has been one of my favorite go-to ‘desserts’ when I have a sweet craving. Naturally sweet and satisfying, you can’t go wrong.
4. Eat foods similar to what your crave, but healthier.
Let’s say you love ice cream, but the last thing you want to do is sit down and night with your favorite trashy TV and a big bowl of cold creamy goodness that will go straight to your thighs. (Ok, let me get that straight. Of coarse I would LOVE to watch trashy TV and eat ice cream…DUH!!) And maybe sparingly some nights you do, but if you really want that cold and creamy deliciousness without the guilt, my favorite thing to do is:
Banana Nice Cream
(If you can’t eat bananas, you could try frozen peaches or mangos too! Really any frozen fruit would work, bananas are just the creamiest.)
Take your frozen and chopped banana,
And place in food processor or blender and blend for a few minutes until cream. (You may have to scrape down the sides once or twice.)
You can eat this plain, or throw in a few add-ins such as:
Etc…The list goes on and on!
Oh, don’t forget that you can be daring too!
Throw in a 1/4 c. of greens with a little stevia or sweetener and some vanilla and your not only conquering that sweet tooth, but your eating some veggies as well!
You can also make extremely messy ice cream sandwiches.
Or make your own ‘Frozen Yogurt’ bowl…
Frozen bananas are also great for Milkshakes!
Pumpkin Pie Milkshake:
1 c. coconut or soymilk
½ c. pumpkin puree
1 carrot finely shredded
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
2 tsp. molasses
1 TB. 100% pure maple syrup
1 TB. vanilla
Blend all together until creamy! Sip and enjoy!
Do you crave brownies?
5. Give in…A little.
If I drank some water, or had a bit of fruit, but I still really want some chocolate, I eat it. Does this mean I have a piece of chocolate cake? No. This means I grab a handful of chocolate chips, or a few bites of a pure dark chocolate bar. I’m indulging, but not over indulging.
6. Give in…A lot.
Life is meant to be enjoyed, and I believe every person should try a piece of rich chocolate fudge cake every so often. If I am going to a birthday, or out for a celebratory dinner, or having people over and dessert is going to served, than I know that day I have to eat very well and balanced. Not a lot of heavy foods, tons of veggies, and good sources of protein. That way, when it comes time for dessert, I can have some of that chocolate cake or a chocolate chip cookie and not feel guilty.(Rule #1: NEVER feel guilty for eating…That isn’t healthy!) I don’t believe in restricting our selves, because the more we restrict, the more we want, and the more we give in…and give up. It’s ok to eat chocolate, it’s ok to stick a fork in a peep and cook it over the stove and scream out, “Merry Christmas! Praise the peep!” Should we do this every day, after every dinner, and every weekend…No. But if I want to eat cookies on Sunday night with my family, then by golly I will!
Remember to enjoy life and the food you eat, and that a little bit of chocolate a day definitely keeps the doctor away…
Because a life without chocolate is definitely something that would send anyone straight to the looney bin!
And speaking of cookies and cookie dough….
Sugar Free Chocolate Chip Cookies….on my NEXT post! (NO splenda(yuck!), maple syrup, agave, honey, OR stevia!! Naturally sweetened!)