Amidst all the holiday sweets--from Halloween through New Years, it's hard not to indulge and overdo it. Eating one too many cookies or that extra small slice of pie is part of life. It happens.
These sugary foods spike our blood sugar levels, and leave us lethargic, bloated and often hungry for more. It could also lead to more overeating and eventually weight gain. When our blood sugar levels are high, we feel jittery and overly-energetic, but once the effects where off, there is the notorious sugar crash. And, when blood sugar levels are spiked for too long it can lead to health problems, most commonly diabetes,
When blood sugar levels are stabilized and controlled, the body has a steady source of energy to fuel throughout the day. When you eat, the body breaks it down and it enters the bloodstream. It's insulin that helps move that fuel from the blood and into the cells, where it is used as energy. Blood sugar levels naturally fluctuate day-to-day.
So, what can you do to help you rebalance your blood sugar levels and keep your cravings in check?
1. Avoid foods that spike blood sugar. A diet rich in these foods can leave little room for over-indulging. These will help keep you satisfied and provide your body with fuel. Eggs, meat, fish, eggplant, peanuts, walnuts, peppers, onions and broccoli are all examples of foods that will have minimal impact on blood sugar levels. If you know you're going to eat a sugary food, try eating something before hand that is rich in fiber, fat and protein. These three amigos work together to help keep blood sugar levels stable.
2. Return back to your routine as soon as you realized you overindulged. One overindulgence can lead to another and it can snowball out of control. As soon as you know you overate sugary foods, commit to starting the next day fresh and return to your healthy diet. Don't fret about what you did, just acknowledge that it happened and move on.
3. Rethink sweet snacks. Sometimes, you just need a little something sweet--it's a natural craving. Before you indulge, take a few sips of water and think about the craving--why do you think you feel the way you do? If you still have the craving, indulge...but not in typical fashion. If you want something sweet, reach for a piece of fruit, sweet potato, carrot or a small piece of dark chocolate. These foods are not heavy with processed sugars and will help you retrain your brain.
Remember, treats are special, and should be treated as such.
Need some more tips on how to keep sugar cravings at bay? Send me an email!