1) EAT MORE PROTEIN & FAT.
When your body craves sugar, it’s craving quick energy because you metabolize sugar faster. Try balancing meals with at least 30% lean protein and 25% healthy fats like avocado, seeds and nuts at every meal to stabilize blood sugar.
2 ) STICK WITH THE REAL STUFF.
A little honey, maple syrup and coconut sugar goes a long way. Just limit your total sugar intake to 50 grams or less a day for adults.
3) BEWARE OF LOW FAT & GLUTEN-FREE LABELS.
Often, they’ll contain excessive sugar or refined carbohydrates to compensate for the fat and gluten, including yogurt, cottage cheese, baked goods and frozen foods. Stick with single ingredient, whole foods to avoid the labelese trap or read them carefully.
4) AVOID THE FAKIES.
Forget about the artificial stuff – aspartame, acesulfameK and saccharine all chemically produced and promise a ‘calorie free’ alternative, but these have been linked to behavioral problems, hyperactivity, allergies and may be carcinogenic. Ditch this additive category altogether.
5) EXPLORE THE NATURAL ALTERNATIVES.
Reach for the fruit. All of the phytonutrients, fiber and plant-based goodness are going to benefit your body more than you know. Plus, there are a lot of sweetener alternatives you can explore, like stevia, monkfuit extract, erythritol and xylitol that are zero calorie and all natural. From liquid to granulated to powder, there’s a ton of versatile options for all your cooking and baking needs. Sometimes, all you need is a little piece of chocolate to curb the craving. Choose dark chocolate with at least 70% or more unsweetened cacao for the heart healthy, antioxidant benefits.
6) DEVELOP YOUR TASTE BUDS.
Develop a taste for bitter and sour foods like leafy greens, broccoli, fermented foods like kimchee and sauerkraut, kombucha and apple cider vinegar. They can help counteract your sweet cravings and retrain your tastebuds to crave different types of foods. Even tea and coffee – without added sugar – can help curb your craving for sweet treats.
The bottom line is, you are sweet enough!
If you could swap ONE pantry item, what would it be?
So many good ones but my top one would be swapping out sugar for stevia. It’s 10x sweeter than sugar so you don’t need a lot. Plus, it’s so versatile and easy to use in everything you would normally use sugar for – and it helps to balance blood sugar, naturally. I use the Sweetleaf stevia drops in Vanilla Creme, Chocolate and English Toffee for hot drinks and baking, along with the fruit flavored ones for water and iced tea and I bake with the granulated stevia. Couldn’t imagine needing sugar ever again!