Food cravings and how to fight them

How to fight Food Cravings
By : Purple Kaddu Posted on :

You reach for that delicious cookie packet every time you get bored or eat a samosa at movie intervals or binge on your favourite chocolate pastry when you are feeling down...Ever wondered why ? why do you crave or binge eat ?

The foods you crave for are fatty and sugary foods. They produce serotonin, a hormone which has a calming effect. Hence you crave for such foods. But, you just cannot continue eating unhealthy foods under the disguise of comfort. You have to fight those cravings! How ?

You'r aware of AIDS and what causes you stay cautious. You know you have a grand presentation and hence you prepare well in advance. Same applies here. Understand what’s really going on when you binge...and thats how you attack the root cause and save yourself from binging.

1. You binge when your hungry -

Its been 4-5 hours post your lunch, your stomach is empty - it sends out signals to find and eat food. In such cases, you look for quick fixes ( chips,cookies,roadside chaat,fries,coffee etc). So, the culprit here is HUNGER or long gaps between two meals. Instead, fuel your body in advance. Eat nuts,dried fruits,fruits,roasted channa or buttermilk during mid-meals.

If these sound too boring, and your stuck up on a bar of chocolate, go ahead and have your way. But, eat a few walnuts or almonds immediately to protect your body from high sugar in chocolate. But, don’t make this a habit.

2. You binge when your anxious -

When you feel ANXIOUS or stressed, you find comfort in foods such as chocolates and ice creams. In such cases its best to vent out emotions in the form of yelling,dancing,running,taking a shower or a walk,penning your thoughts,listening to music or painting. Your desire to binge then reduces. If food still remains on your mind, grab a banana, bowl of curd, black coffee or peanut butter - they too have a calming effect.

3. You binge when you are lonely -

Recent break-up or loss of someone special makes you feel LONELY . Loneliness again calls for finding comfort or happiness within food. Try and understand your emotions before you go hunting for food. Loneliness can be resolved by interacting with people and not food. Call or visit your friend. If you feel like munching , pop some corns and enjoy that with your favourite movie.

4. You binge when you are TIRED -

When your sleep deprived, levels of obesity-hormone ghrelin increase which send signals asking for quick instant energy. That’s when you binge. So, the best remedy for this is to sleep...sleep enough.

Next time you feel like binging , HALT. ie analyse your self - Is it Hunger ? Are you Anxious , Feeling Lonely or Tired !

Few more tips to keep you off  ‘timepass munching’ -

  • Spare your refrigerator, it cannot handle an overload of ice creams and chocolates

  • Focus on health, not weight: The desire to lose weight can actually keep you stuck in a bingeing cycle

  • ‘Out of sight is out of mind’. This applies to food to. Avoid decorating dining table with sweets and namkeens

  • Don’t reward yourself with food, you're not a dog

  • Television food commercials can increase your cravings. Be cautious or flip channels when food ad is being played

  • Boredom does not equate to hunger

  • If a craving arises, look at your watch or divert your mind. Within few minutes, the cravings disappear

'Be a grazer, not a gorger’.  Practice mindful eating and not mindless eating.  


binge eating, craving, emotional eating, serotonin