I am often asked "why am I always hungry at 3pm" and "how do I stop munching on sweets after dinner". The answers to those questions vary from person to person. There are a variety of tricks and tips you can try. Here is a list of the top 5 tips to control those cravings:
1. Create a Craving Busters list - This is a list of activities and diversions that you can use instead of giving into a craving. The list might include calling a good friend or family member, going for a walk or reading a book. Think of activities that you enjoy doing and will distract your from eating. Write them out and carrying the list with you so you can pull it out whenever you feel the urge to eat and it is not mealtime.
2. Don't go more than 5 hours without eating - Think back to when you had your last meal. Was it 2 hours ago or 4 hours ago? If it was 2 hours ago then you are probably not hungry. Your feelings may be based on boredom or stress. Instead of giving into those cravings, go to your Craving Busters list. However, if it is 4 or more hours after your last meal, you may be experiencing true hunger. Instead of giving into a craving for sweet or salty, consider having something healthy and satisfying. That could even be a yogurt with fruit or a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.
3. Brush your teeth immediately after your meals - This will keep you from eating more right after having a meal.
4. Have a cup of herbal tea in the evening - Herbal tea such as chamoile can be very soothing and relaxing. It helps with the emotions that sometimes accompany those cravings.
5. Is it worth it? - When your coworkers bring in sweets, assess the value. Are they home made or store bought? If your coworker baked delicious home made cookies, enjoy one without guilt. But if the sweet is Dunkin Donuts or boxed cookies, resist the temptation.