Five ways to avoid unhealthy food cravings and stay fit


Unusual and uncontrollable desire for unhealthy food can become a problem for your body. And the only way to avoid this problem is to mind how and what you eat daily.

‘Cravings are one of the biggest reasons why people have problems losing weight and keeping it off,’ licensed nutritionist Adda Bjarnadottir wrote online in her post ’11 ways to stop cravings for unhealthy foods and sugars’ on¬†

There are various reasons why people have desire to eat food. Hunger is the only healthy reason and whole natural foods are the best things to eat to stay healthy and fit. But snacks and unhealthy foods are what people find available to eat most times.

Apart from hunger, emotional and physiological factors determine how people desire to eat. ‘Cravings are usually stimulated by emotional cues, but then fueled by physiological ones as we imagine what it will be like to eat the food we want to have,’ Brian Wansink, professor at Cornell University, says.

If you currently have unhealthy craving for food, these are some of the tips that would help you get back to normal and healthy craving:

Drink water

Sometimes when you feel hunger, it might just be your body telling you it is thirsty (or dehydrated). So you should not rush for food each time you feel hunger, try to drink plenty water instead and see what happens.

If after you drink water the hunger stops, then you might have actually been thirsty and not hungry.

Bjarnadottir also wrote that, ‘In middle-aged and older people, drinking water before meals can reduce appetite and help with weightloss.

Distance unhealthy cravings

Whenever you have unusual desire for food, try to ignore it and stay away.

The farther you take your mind away from it, the lesser you feel a desire for it, and the farther you keep food that you crave for away from your reach, the lesser the chance you would eat it.

Try doing anything that will distract you from desiring food and keep the food you crave out of reach. You could take a quick walk or a shower. Stop shopping for foods that encourage you to have unusual cravings, which are mostly snacks and sugars.

Eat protein

Protein may be useful. It can help reduce your appetite and stop you from overeating, especially when you eat plenty of it. It fills and satisfies you for a longer period.

Bjarnadottir wrote that study proved that increasing the amount of protein in your daily calories can reduce your unusual desire to eat significantly.

Plan your meals

Planning out your meal for the day or week and complying with the plan can help you control what and how you eat. With your meals more planned out, you can reduce the likelihood and urgency of having a desire to eat unhealthy foods.

Avoid extreme hunger

When you allow yourself to get extremely hungry for long, you are more likely to rush to eat any kind of food. To remain fit and healthy, the goal is to watch how and what you eat, but extreme hunger will make it very difficult to do that.

Eating more regularly and having healthy snacks close at hand is a good way to avoid getting extremely hungry, Bjarnadottir suggested.