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A happier, healthier you

8 Healthy Ways to Sate Your Sweet Tooth

by Yes Health

Summer is in the air—and with it comes BBQs, picnics and, if you have a sweet tooth, drippy ice cream cones! A little sugary treat now and then is okay. (The Yes Health coaches generally encourage moderation across the board.) Sugar gives us an instant energy boost, but what goes up must come (crashing) down. Ultimately, consuming lots of sugar can wind up making us feel more tired than when we started. The trick is sticking to a small sweet, or doing things that divert our cravings all together.

Here are eight tips from our coaches to help you kick your cravings to the curb: 

  1. Skip “wake-up” sugary drinks. Try your morning coffee or tea sans sugar. Reduce the amount of sweetener a little bit every day until you’ve weaned yourself off the stuff for good. Once your taste buds are converted, you’ll be able to better enjoy all the other flavors in your favorite beverage.
  2. Choose a savory breakfast. Starting the day with sugar keeps it on your mind. Try scrambled eggs with veggies plus some smoked salmon for added protein and healthy oils. Or toast whole grain bread and top it with nut butter instead of jam. 
  3. Pack a snack. Being overly hungry fuels carb and sugar cravings. Keep healthy snacks on hand, like carrot and celery sticks with hummus or apple slices with nut butter. Unsalted nuts are also a great choice when you’re on the go.
  4. Stay hydrated. We often reach for sugary foods when we’re actually thirsty. Keep a full water bottle in your bag and drink it throughout the day.
  5. Know the roots of your cravings. Do you eat when you’re bored, or sad or overwhelmed? Lace up your walking shoes and head outside for a brisk stroll instead. Do you reach for sugar when you’re working? Pack healthier options and keep sugary temptations off your desk.
  6. Ditch artificial sweeteners. Using artificial sweeteners can actually make you desire even more of the sweet stuff. Top your cereal, oatmeal and yogurt with fresh fruit for a natural sugar high.
  7. Limit processed and prepackaged foods. Choose whole foods whenever possible. If you’re buying prepared foods, avoid those with sugar, honey, high fructose corn syrup, sucrose and any other words ending in “ose.” The higher an ingredient appears on the ingredient list, the more of that ingredient is in the product.
  8. Savor the flavors. At your next party or BBQ, try having just one chocolate covered strawberry or cookie. Eat it slowly. Enjoy its sweetness. And let it fully satisfy you. 

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