Monday, April 16, 2012

How To Stop Your Sweet Tooth

The sweet tooth.
The Achilles heel of dieters everywhere.
You have a "perfect" day of eating and then the image of a sweet chocolate treat floats into your mind and you can't get it to go away!
You rationalize with yourself that it's okay to have it. You ate good today, you took the stairs at work, you stood on one foot while you brushed your teeth, you convince yourself that you "deserve" it.  You eat the chocolate. Then you feel guilty.

The sweet tooth sounds nice, but it's naughty.  So let's fight it! Let's fight that sweet tooth!!!

Are you with me?

<insert blog readers shouting "yes" from their homes>

Here's the first thing you need to know about the sweet tooth. When you first try to ignore him it's hard...nearly impossible.  But his allure becomes less the longer you resist.  Stave him off for a few days and you'' hardly even miss his sugar sweetness.

Here's our list of tips for fighting off a killer sweet tooth:
  • Sheer will power.  
    • The first 3 days of changing your habits are the hardest.  Know that and use the other tips below to not give in for the first 3 days.  It WILL get easier after that.
  • Distract yourself
    • Research shows that cravings last 10 minutes.  If you can distract your mind that long then you can push through it. Go for a walk, check email/twitter, play a game on your phone, do a quick clean of your house.
    • I will play a game with myself by saying, "Once you put away the laundry you can have a treat." By the time that's done I usually don't want it anymore.  I just keep finding ways to keep busy and eventually Mr. Sweet Tooth leaves me alone.
  • Drink Water
    • It's easy to mistake hunger for thirst. Chug a glass and then see how you feel.
  • Pack Healthy Snacks
    • In your car, your purse, your office have a healthy snack you can grab. Think an apple, 100 calorie luna bar, mixed nuts, baby carrots.
  • Eat More Earlier in the Day
    • Often times if you don't eat enough during the day then you are with good reason hungry at's almost impossible to fight cravings if you are in a genuine calorie deficit.  Make sure you eat well-balanced meals during the day and you will notice less hunger at night.
  • Think About It
    • Before you grab a chocolate, cookie, handful of chips think about these 2 things: 1. Do I really want this? 2. Is there a better choice I can make?
Hopefully these 5 tips can go a long way towards helping you beat those sweet tooth cravings!

I am a bad night snacker.  I like to sit on the couch with popcorn or chocolate chips or a small bowl of dry cereal. I just like to nibble. I'm never hungry, but it became a habit.  I haven't had any night treats since I took a focused step towards clean eating.  Now I don't crave it as much. That's progress.

One final word, it's often recommended to chew gum to avoid cravings.  This does work, however I am not a fan of the artificial sweeteners in gum.  Charissa wrote a great post about gum this week.  If the gum technique helps you try brushing your teeth, a peppermint, or gum with natural sugars.

I can already feel sweet tooth's across the planet feeling scared! You have the knowledge, you can the tools, YOU CAN DO THIS!

Love and feeling powerful,
Carissa & Kyle

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  1. My best sweet tooth KILLER is gettting enough SLEEP!

  2. great post! my biggest solution is to make a cup of healthy hot chocolate with cocoa powder a pinch of stevia and hot water with a splash of almond milk. works like a charm!

  3. I swear by the 'brushing your teeth' trick. Chocolate doesn't sound as tempting when your mouth tastes all minty!

  4. Thanks for this post! Sugar is my tireless nemesis and I can always use tips on how to keep him at bay.

  5. I have a huge sweet tooth and often have to resort to those types of things when the cravings strike. I'm big on sipping tea or chewing gum and then distracting myself with work on the computer or cleaning.

    1. Distraction is definitely best with me. I just make myself do other things until it's gone. It's hardest when we're watching TV!

  6. Great post! I think for me it works to have other distractions like Tina posted above tea or gum! And I need to sleep enough during the night.

  7. I needed this today! I'm trying to eliminate added sugars and white flour, but my co-worker brought in a bunch of homemade chocolate chip cookies. I did cave and had the smallest one I could find...oops :) I'm still a work in progress though :)

    1. That's still progress! You'll get there and it's all about moderation and making 1 healthy choice at a time. Good job!

  8. I am going to need this so much next week. I am scared to be working with a dietician and all so excited too.

  9. Sometimes a dill pickle will satisfy my sweet tooth!

    And I have found, since starting my half marathon training that the sugar monster was really rearing its ugly head. I upped my protein intake considerably and it has subsided considerably.

    And sleep, yes, definitely.

  10. Thank you for sharing this, I'll be sure to keep this is mind since I have a thing for sweets.

  11. You definitely need to take care of your teeth more often especially when you always eat sweets.

  12. This is something that should help everyone with a sweet tooth including myself. Thank you very much.

  13. I usually drink water or eat a fruit in cases where I crave for sweet things.

  14. Drinking water does work for me. Maybe it fools my stomach and brain into thinking I really had that delicious chocolate bar or tasty cookie. Who knows?

    I've been using that method successfully for a few years now to cut down on the amount of sweet things I have. I've also been adjusting my purchases, so that I have healthier snacks in my handbag.

    There's healthier stuff in the fridge and pantry as well. So no more cookies, no more chocolate. I have carrots now which i cut up and enjoy with a dip that isn't too sweet.

  15. Cool tips, i would surely try this to stop sweet tooth.

  16. Amazing tips!
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