Why do I always crave sugar?

When it comes to cravings, there is more to consider and think about than just assuming and thinking that we have no willpower.


After we overeat our self talk becomes so important in determining what happens next. So often we think, "Why can't I do this? Why can't I stick to anything? Why am I always overeating?". However, another really important thing to think instead is why is this happening? And how can I make this easier for myself?





Environment


When we look at what the research is showing us around the biggest predictors of our intake, our environment plays an important part. If we have an environment where we are seeing, smelling, or presented with sugary foods or simple carbohydrate foods frequently, then this definitely increases our chances of consuming these foods. I recommend looking at the environments that you are in every day. Rather than thinking of taking away all the foods that you love, look at filling it with the energizing foods that you love. Are your most energizing, favourite snacks available? Are your ideal lunch options easy to access at lunch time? Do you have quick, convenient foods on hand that tick the boxes in terms of what you want to be eating more of for your health.


Cravings can occur simply when we see or smell a food. So make it easy for yourself by altering your environment to encourage you to eat more of what you know makes you feel your absolute best.


What else could our body need?


Whenever we feel sugar or carbohydrate cravings, sometimes this is linked to our energy levels or fatigue. If we feel tired, our body is usually needing one of three things. We either need to REST, REFUEL, or MOVE our bodies.


When you next feel a craving for sugar or carbohydrates, consider what your body might need. Do you need to have a ten minute break from your computer? Could you get some exercise outside for 5-15mins? Is it possible to close your eyes for a few minutes to take some pressure off your face? It's amazing what "changing the channel" by exposing yourself to new surroundings- even in a very small dose- can do for your energy.


Sometimes we genuinely need food. If you feel physical hunger and could eat anything- then you could just need a snack! There is nothing wrong with a snack between meals- just make sure it's structured to give you some balance of macronutrients, and slow to digest carbs.


Is your diet making you crave sugar?


Our diets can influence our carbohydrate and sugar cravings hugely. Generally, the more that we eat sugar or simple carbs- the more we crave them. Why? Our taste buds adapt to prefer these flavours, and our brain loves the quick hit of energy. When we eat sugar, this will be digested quickly resulting in a big increase in energy levels. However, if the food is quickly digested, we could see a rapid drop in energy happening soon afterwards as the sugary food is rapidly digested and energy levels drop in response. When this happens- we tend to crave more of what we just had that gave us that initial rise in energy- which generally is sugar or carbs.


Look at your current meals and make sure that they are balanced. Are you having protein at every meal and snack time? Choosing slow to digest grainy carbs? Including roughage from fruit and veggies across the day?


Small changes to the diet can make a big difference when it comes to how we feel. Swaps in brands and products to reduce sugar, altering portion size to keep us fuller, or drinking more water or herbal teas can all make a huge difference to our health and energy levels.



If you need more support then please get in touch. You can work with us 1:1 by contacting me (alex@alexcameron.co.nz) to arrange an appointment, or book a free call with me to learn more. I am also excited to be offering my Uplift membership for only $39/ month. This gives you access to my weight loss program, weekly evening meal plans, recipes, and so much more.