Are you one of those that when you get anxious and stressed get food cravings? I’m raising my hand here ?

What is a food craving? It’s an intense desire to eat something in specific, or I would say, just the need to eat something urgently.

Food cravings come in two forms:

  • Biological: lack of nutrients in our body, unbalanced hormones, etc.
  • Emotional: related to how we feel.

In my personal case, I’m currently in the process of creating a program about healthy eating, and I realize that even when I think and believe I’m advancing at a good pace with my project, my subconscious sneaks in by creating this anxiety that makes me believe I should be advancing faster, I’m not good and smart enough, and lots of other stories coming from the ego.

Luckily I’m able to catch those unconscious thoughts already, otherwise by the time I’ll finish I’ll have a few more kilos. Since I found the cause of my food cravings, I’m able to control them better and take action in a positive way most of the time. Sometimes I fall.

There’s nothing worse than eating and feeling guilty about it. 

~ Kena Siu

Within my healthy eating habits, I give myself permission to make exceptions during the week (rule 80/20, 80% healthy eating during the week and 20% for non-so healthy food), and when I get to eat a delicious chocolate cake, for example, I eat it with pleasure and free of guilt.

With the feeling of guilt, comes at the end feelings of no satisfaction, neither satiety and as a result, I still feel hungry even when I’m full. Has this happened to you? It’s so frustrating.

Identify the root

We tend to crave food when we’re sad, bored, stressed, anxious or angry. We search for something to eat to alleviate those feelings that are uncomfortable for us.

When our body is in the need of nutrients, we also crave food because we do not feed our bodies properly to cover all its essential functions. As a result, it asks for food.

It is relevant to take the time to ask yourself what is causing your craving, let the sensations flow. Identify the root of it, so the next time it happens you’ll recognize the symptoms and you’ll be able to catch it faster than the chocolate bar of the bag of chips.

7 ways to overcome food cravings. 

– Drink a glass of water. Sometimes we confuse dehydration with hunger. Hydrate yourself. Here is a useful article to read: Dehydration: why & how to prevent it.

– Take a healthy snack. If after the glass of water you’re still hungry, have a crunchy healthy snack such as veggies, a whole fruit or nuts.

– Focus on something else. Trick your mind by doing something different. Talk to someone, take a toilet break, read an article, organize your home, do laundry, etc.

– Exercise: You will focus on the activity, you’ll get energized and lose some fat on the way.

– Drink a chamomile tea. It will fill your stomach and it’ll relax you.

– Meditate. It’ll help to calm your mind, observe your emotions and your body. It will help you relax and soothe your state. You can actually use meditation to identify the root of your cravings.

– Do something you enjoy. Get your book, do some scrapbooking, knit, play with your children or pet, take “me time”. Whatever makes you happy.

6 steps to overcome food cravings due to bad eating habits.

– Eat whole foods. Natural and whole foods are the ones nurturing your body. If your body doesn’t get what it really needs you’ll continue with cravings. Fast food and processed foods have no nutritional value to the body, besides they are full of sugar, salt and fat, which are the ingredients causing your cravings in the first place. They are designed to make us addicted.

– Have a salad first. If you’re really hungry, have a salad as an entry. It’ll benefit by satisfying your hunger and you’ll be less anxious and able to make a smart decision for your next meal plate. Besides, you will nourish your body by eating more vegetables and might help with weight loss.

– Use a smaller plate to eat. Hence your portion will be smaller. Another way to trick the mind, and feel satisfied after eating a full meal plate. Your stomach might get smaller eventually. 

– Be mindful when eating. Keep devices away if possible. Savour your meal and be aware of your body so you can notice when your body is almost full to stop eating. You might start eating less by being fully present.

– Finish eating before you’re completely full. This will help the digestion process. You’ll also feel satisfied after a few minutes when you receive the signal to your brain and knowing you did the right thing. Our brain receives the signal that we are full after 20 minutes, so imagine how much more you can eat during this period of time.

– Persuade your mind. Repeat to yourself “I am satisfied”, “I am satisfied”. That helps the brain and the body to believe it and might stop the craving. One thing I do in the morning is to write in my gratitude notebook the intention that I’ll make healthy food choices during the day. Written words are powerful.

What are you really craving for?

Thank you for reading. As you can notice, you are not alone on this road. So do not feel guilty about it, just be prepare to take the right action!

Have you discovered what’s the root of your food cravings? Which food do you usually crave for?

What are you really craving for?

Share your comments below so we can learn and support each other.

Love & Good Vibes, Kena.