If you find yourself constantly reaching for sweets or suffering from an energy crash, perhaps it is time to overhaul your diet and choose foods that conquer sugar cravings. Those ruthless sugar cravings are more than likely caused by foods you are eating, which may be causing your blood sugar to drop, giving you a false sense of hunger and stealing your energy. Luckily, this is not an endless battle. Here are 7 foods that effectively conquer your sugar cravings, not make them worse. Try implementing some of these foods each day to satisfy you, energize you and sustain you through the day, without the need for a vending machine visit or a mindless midnight pantry raid.
Eggs have been proven to be one of the top foods to conquer sugar cravings and lower hunger levels throughout the day. Eggs are a great source of protein, healthy fats, B vitamins, Omega 3 fatty acids, and even small amounts of iron which fill you up and power you through the day. They have also been proven to lower insulin levels and a hormone in our bodies known as ghrelin, which halts hunger and prevents sugar cravings. Try eating an egg at either breakfast, lunch, dinner, or as a snack. A great tip for the week is to hard boil 6 on Sunday and store them in the fridge through the week to grab and go.
Avocados are truly a wonderful food to conquer sugar cravings because they contain B vitamins including folate which lowers stress, 18 essential amino acids for a great source of protein, healthy fats and Vitamin E. They are an excellent vegan source of protein, but can be useful to all types of eaters in controlling sugar cravings. Avocados can be added to just about anything from salads, to smoothies to omelets, or even used a simple dip in some healthy guacamole. Try new ways to learn how to love avocados and watch your hunger levels dissipate almost instantly.
3. Coconut Oil
Unrefined coconut oil has often been called "Nature’s Miracle Oil," and with good reason. For hundreds of years, many people credit this healthy food to lowering insulin levels and keeping hunger in check without raising cholesterol. Coconut oil has often been touted as a weight loss aid, and this is probably due to the fact it turns off your sweet tooth. It provides beneficial fats to your liver, where fats are used for fuel, not for storage. Add it to smoothies, or use it to cook with. Coconut oil has an incredibly high smoke point which means the fats stay intact throughout the cooking process so they aren't damaging to the body, unlike other vegetable oils.
4. Hemp and Chia Seeds
Hemp and chia seeds are a fabulous source of vegan protein, but aren't just for vegans. These seeds contain more Omega 3 fatty acids than fish per ounce, and are a wonderful source of fiber, magnesium and B vitamins. These nutrients satisfy your hunger and prevent a sugar binge later in the day. You can buy hemp protein powder or whole hemp seeds and chia seeds can be bought whole or ground as well. With a slightly nutty taste, hemp seeds are excellent in salads, over yogurt, or mixed into smoothies or homemade salad dressing. You can also add hemp seeds to hummus. Chia seeds are tasteless and can be added anywhere you can think of. Chia seeds thicken whatever they are added to, creating a pudding-like consistency. This makes them an excellent addition to smoothies, sauces, baked goods or salad dressings.
One of the best sources of clean protein is quality, sustainable fish. Many people avoid fish for mercury content, but eaten once or twice a week, fish is not a risky food when the nutritional benefits behind it are considered. Fish is excellent for conquering sugar cravings due to the fact it is extremely high in protein, with usually around 20 grams per serving, depending on the type of fish. It is rich in essential amino acids and essential healthy fats, which keep your blood sugar even, and knock out cravings. You can bake it, steam it, stir-fry it, or grill it and pair it with most any type of side dish.
6. Coconut Flour
If you haven’t heard of coconut flour, you should definitely try it sooner rather than later. Coconut flour is ground coconut meat that is extremely high in fiber and protein. It is also lower in fat than shredded coconut. You only need 2 tbsp. of coconut flour where a recipe calls for 1/3 cup of another type of flour. Start making your muffins, pancakes and other homemade goods with coconut flour instead of grain flours, which are higher on the glycemic index. Coconut flour is wonderful for lowering your insulin levels due to the fiber and protein it contains, which sustain you for longer periods of time. It offers an excellent cake-like flavor that is moist and soft to whatever it is added to. You can even add a 1 tbsp. to a smoothie for a thicker consistency, which will also boosts the fiber content.
7. Leafy Greens
Perhaps one of the most important foods for conquering your sugar cravings are all leafy greens. Think kale, spinach, romaine, Swiss chard, collard greens, mustard greens and turnip greens. Leafy greens are full of Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, calcium, iron, small amounts of protein, and magnesium. They are one of nature’s most potent foods to conquer sugar cravings because they calm and nourish the whole body on a deep level, disabling the need for sugar sweets. Add leafy greens wherever you want to and however you can. Not just for salads, leafy greens can be added to sauces, smoothies, omelets, baked goods, or they are delicious simply steamed with a little olive or coconut oil and black pepper with a dash of sea salt and squeeze of lemon. Lemon’s high vitamin C content actually enhances the nutrient uptake of iron, making it a great accompaniment to dishes with leafy greens.
Often our bodies reach for sugar when they are stressed, tired, or malnourished. Eating every 3 hours and choosing foods like these 7 powerhouse foods will have your sugar cravings practically crawling away screaming. What’s your favorite food to conquer sugar cravings?