For the Cookie Monster in All of Us!

2 p.m snack attack. *Sigh*

My Craving?? Starbucks Green Tea Latte

Do you ever feel like the bag of BBQ chips or crunchy, nutty chocolate bars are plotting against your quest to shed the last 10 pounds of your goal? Sorry honey, according to food physiologist Marcia Pelchat, it’s not the Pringles fault…it’s yours!

Food cravings mean that the bodys signals are in a bit of a messy conundrum! When we are tired or feeling a little blue, our  blood sugar and/or  serotonin levels plummet, and the body signals the brain that it needs a “pick-me-up”. In turn, this signal causes a sugar or carbohydrate craving.

Serotonin is our basic feel-good hormone. If serotonin is low, we feel sad or depressed. Sugars and simple carbohydrates release a short burst of serotonin. Sounds all fine and dandy, right? Not quite. We feel good for a moment, but then soon return to our low-serotonin state and crave more sugar and simple carbohydrates. Hello 10 pounds, nice to meet you…again.

Insulin is responsible for keeping your blood sugar levels in check by telling the body’s cells when to absorb glucose from the bloodstream. When you consume too much sugar or carbohydrates in your diet, you can become insulin resistant, meaning your body stops responding to insulin, and instead holds onto every calorie it can and stores it as fat. In the meantime, your cells can’t absorb the glucose they still need, so they signal your brain that you need MORE carbohydrates or sugars.

Follow these simple tips on how to help curb your cravings. Capeesh?

  1.  Avoid Triggers. You are what you eat! Your body is going to crave whatever you have become accustom to eating. That’s right, there’s such thing as training your taste buds! You can weaken your old cravings by creating and strengthening new ones.
  2. Go Nuts! Consuming adequate water with nuts is a great way to snack through out the day. Don’t go crazy and over indulge but a small handful of raw nuts or a trailmix throughout the day is a healthy snack to keep you satisfied until your next meal.
  3. Nip Stress in the Butt! Eliminating and decreasing stress in your life could save you hundreds of calories per day. Laugh now, please!
  4. Make a Plan. Planning ahead with snacks such as nuts, seeds, protein bars, etc. and of course consuming enough WATER will help distract you from going to the vending machine.
  5. Indulge! It’s important to not deprive yourself of all the good stuff. There are so many alternative “treats” out there to help you make healthier choices but still indulge in those cookies, chips or whatever it may be. If you starve yourself of the goodies, there’s a good chance you’ll find yourself bingeing at the next family gathering.
My Alternative?? A Nutty Matcha Latte made with Almond Milk from Whole Foods with my sister, aka “BetterThanIHaveEverTasted-Latte” 
Lesson Learned: There is ALWAYS an alternative.Your Task?Experiment with new tastes, new places and new recipes. Take your number one craving/”pick-me-up” and discover your new alternative.

Bake your cake and eat it too! Below is a healthy recipe for delicious chocolate chip cookies! Never be afraid to alter a recipe and cater it to your own taste preference. That being said…white sugar…big no no!

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