Experts term hunger cravings as just another emotion that dies off soon (here's how you can deal with post-breakfast hunger pangs). Just wait it out for 15 minutes and chances are, you won’t find yourself pining for food as you did before. Professor Adrian Taylor conducted an experiment where he found that participants who engaged in movement during those 15 minutes were able to fight off their cravings better. So it’s possible to literally walk away from your cravings! And we think that 15 minutes of mild discomfort is a small price to pay for your dream body.
Physically discipline yourself
We’re all adults now. Long gone are the days our parents would deny us that cup of ice cream before bed time. But now, you’re the disciplinarian (here you go, here's some #inspo on self-discipline). Stop yourself, think about the snack that you’re craving for and ask yourself this important question- Do I really want to eat this now? Think about the consequences you will face after eating it. As suggested in Dr Oz’s show, use your dominant hand to lightly slap your other hand while you ask yourself that question. Since cravings are psychological, the tapping action activates your physical body to think about whether it really needs the snack. Chances are, you will deny the snack after that.
If you’re on a journey to lose weight, be healthier or achieve your dream body, remind yourself why you’re preventing yourself from having all those extra calories. Use a picture that reminds you of your fitness goals as your wallpaper, be it Heidi Klum or Jennifer Lopez. Or, put a motivational poster near your dining area. One look of that will remind you how far you’ve come, and how much work you have left. Don’t let this moment of weakness seize you, you’re stronger than that!
Sniff some mint
Dietitian and nutritionist Cynthia Sass says that mint’s strong scent makes it a natural appetite suppressant. All hail the handy-dandy, dynamic Vicks Vaporub. Smell anything minty or even brew yourself a cup of clear mint tea. You’ll be able to stave off your cravings. But beware, this does not apply to root beer or mint ice cream!
Stick to a routine of sleeping early and turn off that television (here are some tips for sleeping early and well)! Get at least seven to eight hours of sleep each night so your body feels well rested and has ample energy instead of reaching out for fatty snacks as fuel. Sleeping early also gives your body the energy it needs, reducing the chances of having cravings the following night.
Press these points
Daniel Hsu, owner and doctor of New York AcuHealth Acupuncture reveals that suppressing your appetite is as easy as applying pressure to parts of your body connected to the hypothalamus, the part of the brain responsible for all your cravings. The first point is at the base of your neck, where your hairline ends, at either side of the spine. Or, simply massage your temples to release the chemical serotonin- it ought to stop your craving. Isn’t it amazing how intricately our entire body is connected?
Brush your teeth
If you brush your teeth every night (we hope you do), it’s probably done right before bedtime (remember these tips we've imparted you previously for clean and sparkly teeth?). Well, the simple act of brushing can be used in your defence. Next time you start craving something unhealthy at night, bring yourself straight to the bathroom, take your toothbrush and get to work! We are less likely to eat anything after that because who wants to brush their teeth twice?
Stop buying packaged snacks
Let’s say you have a craving for something that you already have in your kitchen. This leads to a higher chance of you giving in to your cravings. When grocery shopping, avoid visiting the snack or chocolate aisle (or maybe try these guilt-free snacks?). Instead, stock up on fresh fruits. Eliminating all processed snacks in your house will force you to forget your craving. You might even reach out for something healthier! So don’t make it a habit to have packaged snacks in your house or expect an increased chance in busting your calorie bank at night.
This first appeared on Shape.