Is having a sweet tooth okay, or should you fight it at all costs? The truth is that sweet cravings are tough to resist, especially with the pies, cakes, cookies, puddings and all other desserts testing our temptation during the holiday season. In fact, our first craving from birth is sugar, delivered via our mother’s milk. Therefore, these cravings are not new to the human experience. As adults, modern life requires us to work longer hours, sleep less, stress more, skip meals and cut carbsâ€”all factors that contribute to our desire for sweet treats. So, how can we still indulge with our family and friends without sabotaging our healthy eating streak?
There are those folks who believe that cutting out every source of sugar is the answer to all of their problems. The fact is, the overconsumption of processed sugar is unhealthy, but the best bet to quench your desire for sweets is to maintain a healthy diet and lifestyle, and address your cravings as they come up. Ask yourself, are you really interested in something sweet, or are just physiologically hungry? Most sugar cravings are primal cues to eat, signals that the body requires additional energy, rather than symptoms of an “sugar addiction” as most people believe.
Many people who are “addicted to sugar” think the best thing is to stay away from it. Then what happens? The cravings crop up, they eat one healthy snack after another in an attempt to fight the desire and before you know it they’ve consumed up to 800 calories at a time, when a responsible portion of dessert might only be 150 calories. Therefore, enjoy a sweet treat now and then and moderate the portion. Restriction often leads to binging, so keep this in mind as you go house hopping this holiday season.
To be sure you’re not confusing sugar cravings with hunger, follow the Whole Body Reboot eating principles: Remember to eat start your day with a solid breakfast, eat every 3-4 hours to control your hunger hormone ghrelin, combine carbohydrates, protein and fat during your main meals and stay hydrated.
If you truly have a sweet tooth, embrace it rather than fighting it. Here are my three top sweet treats that you may enjoy:
- Two tablets of dark chocolate + 1 dried fig
- Two dates filled with 2 tablespoons of cacao nibs
- One cup of strawberries topped with 2 tablespoons of whipping cream
So this holiday season, there’s no need to try every single dessert that’s offered, but rather pick and choose the ones you want to indulge in the most, be sure to size your portion responsibly and you’re sure to stay merry!