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Learning to controle cravings???

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Old 07-15-2011, 03:14 AM   #1
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Default Learning to controle cravings???

I'm slightly addicted to sodas. And my boyfriend drinks Mountain Dew constantly. It's so tempting to just drink a glass of Coke. I have terrible controle over my sweet tooth cravings and I need some advice on how to replace the sodas and snacks.
Another problem of mine is eating way too mant tv dinners. I'm a frozen food lover. Any advice would be greatly Apreciated.
Please and thank you <3
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Old 07-15-2011, 03:34 AM   #2
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What I've found best works for me is not to try and will my way through the cravings. It doesn't work for long.

I try to be strategical about it. Maybe you can try portion control - less soda and TV dinners. Or if you want to cut them out of your diet completely or nearly so, I'd recommend finding substitutes. Maybe try tea with lemon juice (my favorite), and making your own "TV dinners" out of meat, potatoes, etc. that you prepare. Maybe that will help quell the cravings.

Good luck!
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Old 07-15-2011, 03:43 AM   #3
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Hello Candice,

I totally understand your issue! I was/am the same. What makes the biggest difference for me is excercise. Knowing that I just worked my butt off means I am in no way gonna pump those calories back into my body again with cola or dr pepper. (My favs). Also, eating more healthy makes me feel cleaner and my perception of food has changed more - the though of putting such 'icky' stuff with bad fats, e-numbers and massive amounts of sodium into my system just doesn't seem as appealing as it did anymore.

Next to that, I allow myself a glass of dr pepper twice a week, after a long day. Just one, icecold glass! And it's even so much nicer now, because it tastes even better as a treat than as a daily routine.

Goodluck with it - and don't try to change too much about your lifestyle at once! Little steps... eat only tv dinners 4 times a week instead of 7, and get half of the soda..
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Old 07-15-2011, 04:01 AM   #4
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what about late night snacks? I know midnight snacks are all together a bad idea but is there anyway to Have a healthy late night snack?
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Old 07-15-2011, 04:45 AM   #5
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Late night, fruits or veggies (If you must)...you don't want to eat anything high cal etc before you sleep...
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Old 07-15-2011, 04:57 AM   #6
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Omg, Candice... I get you. You are not alone, my friend.

It is hard. My fiance drinks mountain dew as his main beverage of choice. While he is cutting back, sometimes it's really hard to be around without swaying. When we moved in together, my diet coke intake skyrocketed. Whenever he would get a 2 liter, he would offer to get me one. He could go through 2 2 liters in a day at that point. Bad news.

I think the biggest difficulty (for me at least) is having it available. If I can restrain myself enough at the store not to buy it, I don't miss it all that much... I say that now, but I haven't bought a soda since May. The first couple weeks were hard. It's habit. I couldn't go into the store without the temptation. I get the sweet tooth part, but from what you said, it sounds like there might be the habit part too.

I have a Trenta cup from Starbucks that I reuse, filling it with water. Yeah, there are plenty of teas, coffees, and powders in my cabinet. But just having a big thing of water (with a straw!) next to my usual couch spot seems to act a a good replacement for the casual soda-drinking that was adding up to so many empty bottles.
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Old 07-15-2011, 05:23 AM   #7
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Couple of things that help me/ a lot of people on this board:

Eat full meals, not "mini-meals" throughout the day. Some people like eating small mini-meals 6 times a day, but others find that eating 2-3 full, large meals a day of equal calories to the 6-mini meals person keeps them fuller longer and not thinking about food as much.

Replace your habits with a new habit- don't just try to quit something completely. If you love eating a pint of ice cream in one sitting, completely giving it up probably won't work. Instead switch to a pint of low-calorie frozen yogurt. Later, educe the portion size to a cup. Then start going without it from time to time.

Similarly, start trying to drink diet soda instead of regular. Or take fizzy water and add fruit juice to it. Then work your way towards water, tea, or another low/no-calorie beverage. Break habits down slowly.

Keep regular treats in your diet, deet For most people, cutting out all candy, desserts, potato chips, etc leads to falling "off the wagon." For these people (myself included!) permitting one small serving of foods I love once a day or once a week keeps me from going crazy and keeps me on-plan (That said, for some they cannot eat certain foods because it leads to a binge, so be aware of that.)

Learn to cook delicious foods. Healthy foods do NOT have taste bad. Foods cooked homemade with fresh ingredients can be incredible. Foods we often consider "bad"- cakes, cream soups, etc- can often be made healthier without sacrificing taste. Learning to make healthier versions of traditionally high-calorie food can help satisfy cravings and help keep you wanting to stick to plan.

Eat LOTS OF HIGH NUTRIENT FOOD! I can't stress this enough. I really think Michael Pollan is spot-on when he says one of the reasons we crave junk food (and are not satisfied with just one big mac, but need to go back for another one) is because most of our food is so poor in nutrients. Something that processed offers very little to our body and it craves more food to crave more nutrients. When I eat whole foods, natural ingredients, with very little processing, I am much more satisfied than when I eat processed, fast food, or junk food.

Also---
Quote:
Originally Posted by mateosmama2005 View Post
Late night, fruits or veggies (If you must)...you don't want to eat anything high cal etc before you sleep...
It's an old dietary myth that when you eat calories makes a difference. Even if your metabolism is higher or lower when you digest a meal (such as when your body is at rest), the SUM TOTAL or net of what your body burned throughout the day and what it consumed through food all evens out.

Anectodal evidence if you don't believe me : Europe, Asia, and South America all eat 9-10 PM dinners and do not have skyrocketing rates of obesity! (Let me know if you want more scientific support than just this correlation.)

The reason eating at night is bad for some people is that it leads to late-night binging or grazing. Not eating after their dinner helps them stay on plan. However, for others who like to eat late it's fine. Just be cognizant of your habits and tendencies.

Good luck!!
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Old 07-15-2011, 05:27 AM   #8
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Couple of additional comments--

There are TONS of healthy substitutions for snacks. Make homemade sweet potato fries (baked) instead of french fries. Use mashed banana or applesauce instead of oil when you are baking. Use yogurt in lieu of sour cream and mayonnaise for your tacos, tuna salad, etc. Eat pomegranate seeds instead of candy. Go for a small piece of very dark chocolate bar instead of hershey's. Do a little research online and you'll come up with TONS of ideas!

Also, why do you think you like frozen TV dinners so much? I would bet if you start to cook homemade meals and find recipes you like you'll enjoy them so much more and be satisfied more quickly (thus curbing the need to binge). Start to train your tastes to enjoy fresh, whole foods instead of frozen, processed ones. It's not an easy process but it's an important one for your healthy, weight, and wellbeing!
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Old 07-15-2011, 05:28 AM   #9
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The pop was a huge issue with me, too - I am a Coke/Pepsi addict. And addiction to pop (the caffeine, that is) is a real thing. You know you're addicted when you can't say no, when you experience withdrawal effects, etc. I finally quit just a few days ago because I was up to drinking several glasses a day, like it was water. And then I started getting these weird stomach cramps that hurt pretty bad, and I knew it had to be the Coke/Pepsi because it was the only really horrible thing I was consuming. That was a wake up call! I had to quit.

For me, I went cold turkey. I quit for eight months once, but someone convinced me to have just one glass as a celebration of something, and I was right back on. Addicts have to completely cut themselves from what they're addicted to. I don't know if this is your problem, but if it is, that may be the reality for you.

As for the frozen dinners, I like the above suggestion of creating your own! And also to cut back the number of days you're eating them.
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Old 07-15-2011, 07:48 AM   #10
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How are you with herbal teas? The ones which are a blend of herbs and spices are often sweetened with a bit of liquorice root, which provides sweetness without calories.

I also quite like water with a bit of pink grapefruit juice in it. I don't usually like diluted fruit juices, but grapefruit is quite strong and tastes better diluted. The ordinary grapefruit juice is too sour for me, pink grapefruit juice gets it just right. That would provide you with a pleasant fruity drink for minimal calories and no additives, and I imagine would be nice made with sparkling water if you want something fizzy.

If the convenience of frozen meals is a factor, try making recipes where you can cook in bulk and freeze portions. I sometimes make a big pot of vegetable chilli and put it in meal-sized containers with rice, for instance. Frozen and reheated rice isn't ideal, but it's perfectly passable, especially with a nice tasty chilli on top.

I'm guessing that you're not much of a cook? Get some nice cookbooks. Think of which restaurants/take-aways you like the most, and explore cuisines from different countries. Many of them are much healthier than standard American food, especially the home-cooked versions. And many of them are fairly quick to put together as well. I am devoted to miso soup with tofu, rice and vegetables for lunch, and apart from putting the rice on to cook in advance (and you can skip this step if you use fresh noodles), the whole thing takes about three minutes to cook. A stir-fry for one person is very quick as well, and if you make a big stir-fry you can put the leftovers in the fridge.
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Old 07-15-2011, 07:59 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Esofia View Post
Think of which restaurants/take-aways you like the most, and explore cuisines from different countries. Many of them are much healthier than standard American food, especially the home-cooked versions.
When you say "standard American food" do you mean American cuisine or do you mean what Americans tend to eat now (highly processed fast, frozen food?) I thin you mean the latter, and if so, I agree. If you mean the latter, I'm going to push back on that claim a bit. There's nothing inherently unhealthy about American cuisine (as in, homecooked standard American fare). Portion control is critical, but that's true with every cuisine.

Anyway sorry if I misinterpreted, I just didn't want the OP to read that and assume that she MUST eat less American traditional fare because it's unhealthy.

(All that said as a huge foodie who LOVES international cuisine I totally agree with you that incorporating a variety of Mediterranean, Spanish, Mexican, Thai, Indian, Japanese, etc food is incredible for diversifying the palate and ensuring an engaging and enjoyable diet!)
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Old 07-15-2011, 08:07 AM   #12
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My saving grace is Fiber One Oats and Chocolate bars because they seriously taste better than a candy bar (in my opinion) and Yoplait's light yogurts. I know this sounds like a commercial but seriously there are so many different flavors. I love it. These are both relatively low in calories.
Addendum: and I agree with whoever said that you just cannot keep your trigger sweets in the house. If there is nothing really sweet & delicious you won't eat!
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Old 07-15-2011, 08:29 AM   #13
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As far as the coke goes, I switched to coffee and I allow myself 1 tbsp of a flavored creamer in each cup. I also drink tea sometimes, which is a plus since I drink that black. I also added in a lot of water.

For late night snacks. Are you really hungry, or are you tired? If I am really hungry before bed I will eat a banana, or a yogurt.

You do not have to change everything at once. You can start by changing one or two things a week.
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Old 07-15-2011, 09:33 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by indiblue View Post
When you say "standard American food" do you mean American cuisine or do you mean what Americans tend to eat now (highly processed fast, frozen food?) I thin you mean the latter, and if so, I agree. If you mean the latter, I'm going to push back on that claim a bit. There's nothing inherently unhealthy about American cuisine (as in, homecooked standard American fare). Portion control is critical, but that's true with every cuisine.

Anyway sorry if I misinterpreted, I just didn't want the OP to read that and assume that she MUST eat less American traditional fare because it's unhealthy.

(All that said as a huge foodie who LOVES international cuisine I totally agree with you that incorporating a variety of Mediterranean, Spanish, Mexican, Thai, Indian, Japanese, etc food is incredible for diversifying the palate and ensuring an engaging and enjoyable diet!)
Yes, I meant the latter, what your average American eats these days. But while America is a large country with a varied cuisine and plenty of space to eat healthfully within those traditions, I wouldn't put American cuisine on a list of top ten countries with healthy cooking traditions as a general thing. Too many animal fats, not enough vegetables. I grew up in England and live in Scotland, and neither of those would make that list either. In fact, that's exactly why I grew up with a big range of international cuisines, because English cooking is nothing to write home about. It was nicely summarised in A Fish Called Wanda when one of the two Americans in the film says, "The English contribution to world cuisine: the chip." (That's fries to you, Americans.) As for Scotland, this is the country that invented the deep-fried Mars Bar (NB: they are rarely consumed), and the nation's diet is pretty ghastly taken as an average, with dreadful rates of heart disease and also alcoholism. So I pick out the occasional good bits and explore other cultures for the rest of my food. I take the porridge and leave the haggis. Where British food is improving, it's largely because people are eating non-British food. On the other hand, it doesn't help when a healthful new dietary tradition is introduced to America or Britain, and it promptly gets Americanised/Anglicised and made less healthy. Real Italian pizzas are rather different from what we're used to here, and I still cannot believe how many Indian restaurants offer chips.

I've noticed a similar shift with Jewish cooking (grew up Jewish too). My mother's generation grew up with the Evelyn Rose cookbook: Ashke**** (Eastern European) cooking, the sort that everyone thinks of as traditionally Jewish, comfort food but also heart-attack-on-a-plate stuff. For my generation, I think the most influential cookbook is Claudia Roden's, where most of it is Sephardi (Mediterranean, Middle Eastern and Asian food), and it's far healthier and also more varied. It's fun because you're still staying within your cultural tradition, it's still Jewish food, but at the same time it's new and exotic.

There's a class element too, and I think the urban/rural issue is another factor. I'm middle class and from a big English city, we always had plenty of access to more exotic foods, it was normal to eat them, and it thus seemed the norm. A friend of mine (middle class Scot) jokes that he came out of the womb clutching a sundried tomato in one hand and a copy of the Guardian in the other. My partner, on the other hand, is from a working class family from a small town in Scotland. There's a noticeable difference in the foods we consider usual, although he's a reasonably healthy eater these days. He has warned me that his dad's family, which I'm going to meet for the first time next month, are probably going to think my eating habits are quite crazy. Theirs are equally alien to me, and it's odd for me to think that theirs are far more representative of the population as a whole than mine are, especially if I'm wandering around a health food shop.

Last edited by Esofia : 07-15-2011 at 09:35 AM.
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Old 07-16-2011, 12:20 AM   #15
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Thank Ya'll so much! These are great tips! I really appreciate it. =] Yes I like to cook but my mom rarely ever buys fresh veggies or fruits. Today as an encouragment My boyfriend pampered me. I got my nails and hair done. He said for every 5 pounds i lose he's going to buy me something nice =] <3
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