Let’s talk about cravings for a sec — they are something we all deal with at some point, and while some of us may crave all the sweets, others may crave savory, more decadent foods. No matter what the case, it always seems like food cravings tend to pop up towards the end of the day. Maybe it has something to do with our energy levels plummeting in the afternoon, or that we’re just more likely to reach for something sweet that’s within reach when the afternoon business sets in. No matter what the case, we’re sharing five healthy ways to combat cravings that you may have never thought of.
Oh, and these tips are total wellness game-changers too because not only may they help you combat cravings, but they are also pretty amazing ways to practice that daily dose of self-care we all deserve.
5 Ways to Combat Those Pesky Afternoon Snack Cravings
#1 Stop & Be Present
Afternoon cravings coming on strong? Stop right where you are and just breathe. Be present in the moment and take a few breaths before giving in to that craving. Be mindful of why you’re feeling the need to reach for the sweet snack, but don’t pass any judgment. Just acknowledge those feelings and let them pass.
With practice, you may be able to catch yourself craving something, stop, and take a breath, and walk away from the snack bowl. It may become second nature to bring more mindfulness into your life not only when cravings hit, but when other areas of your life get a bit tense too.
#2 Brew a Cup of Tea
Sometimes when we’re craving something even though we may not necessarily be hungry, it may be a sign that we actually need some hydration. So, brew yourself a mug of tea with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, and add some added metabolism-boosting spices like ginger or turmeric with a drizzle of raw honey for an added boost.
Sip and enjoy before giving in to those cravings — it may do just the trick to help you easily say no to that bag of chips.
#3 Treat Yourself With Something Other Than Food
Ever notice how you tend to crave more sugar when in a bad mood? There’s some science to back this up, suggesting that a bad mood can lead to increased cravings. This gives us yet another reason to make sure that we are prioritizing self-care.
Schedule in a few things to take care of you each month, and get it on the calendar! Whether it’s a manicure and pedicure or massage, just pick a few things that make you feel good.
And, when those afternoon snack cravings come on, combat cravings by distracting yourself with a quick workout or pull out a good book and sip on a cup of tea. Not only are these distractions a great way to practice self-care, but they may leave you totally forgetting about the food craving in the first place.
#4 Fuel up on Balanced Meals Throughout the Day
Afternoon snack cravings may come on if you’ve gone all day without eating anything, and your body is craving nourishment. This is where fueling up on the right foods throughout the day is a key way to combat cravings while keeping those blood sugar levels in check.
Here are some healthy foods to mix and match to create nourishing meals to keep your belly full, your body nourished, and your cravings at bay.
- Rolled oats
- Sweet potatoes
- Dark leafy greens
- Cruciferous vegetables (cauliflower and broccoli)
- Low sugar fruits (berries, grapefruit)
- Wild-caught salmon
- Nut butters
- Nuts & seeds
- Coconut, olive, and avocado oil
And, if after your balanced meals, you’re still hungry for a snack, check out our list of 10 quick sweet snack ideas to help beat cravings while still satisfying that sweet tooth.
#5 Keep Yourself Accountable
Let’s face it, accountability is everything when it comes to long-term fitness success, so why would it be any different with healthy eating? We have to have accountability to ourselves, and a great way to practice this is to write down everything you eat.
Yes, seriously — jotting it all down will mean that you’ll have to write down what you ate if you gave into those afternoon snack cravings too.
And, if you do indulge in that favorite sweet snack from time to time (because that’s totally all a part of a balanced lifestyle), there’s no shame in that game, but for the majority of the days where you are striving to eat clean, writing it out can help keep you on track.
And, when you look back at your daily food log and see that you didn’t give in to that craving, it may cause a ripple effect of wanting to continue to combat these cravings head-on.
Combat Cravings Like A Boss
Take control of cravings and show them who’s boss. For real, you totally have control here, and with these five healthy ways to combat cravings, you may find yourself inching one step closer to reaching your goals.
You have got this!