Sweets! We love them. We have to have them. We ate a cookie for breakfast! Okay, eating a cookie wasn’t the best idea, but it was delicious. Sometimes you just have to give in to the craving.
Having a sweet tooth can be a nightmare. Sugar is just so addicting! What’s a girl to do?
First, don’t punish yourself. Everyone is allowed a little something sweet every now and then. They key is learning how to indulge your sweet tooth in healthier ways. You could eat an entire pie, or you could take better care of your body and eat something sweet and full of nutrients.
How does that work? We’ve compiled four less guilty ways to give into your sweet side without letting your sweet tooth control your life.
Enjoy in Moderation
It’s all about portion control. Allowing yourself a small serving of dessert or a light afternoon treat can help you stay on track and avoid the dreaded sugar binges.
The truth is that we have a natural preference for sweet foods, and we tend to overeat. It’s almost impossible to eat a single cookie when we could eat ten! That’s why you have to learn to eat your sweets in moderation.
If you want some pie, cut yourself a small slice, put it on a plate, and replace the rest of the pie in the fridge. Then, take your piece of pie to the table to eat and don’t let yourself go back for seconds. It will take some willpower, but if you can avoid giving in to your cravings right away, by drinking water and waiting them out, you’ll feel a lot less guilty about indulging your sweet tooth.
Choose Whole Foods
If you have to have sugar, choose the right kind of sugar. Instead of reaching for a bag of heavily processed cookies, grab a whole grain granola bar or an apple. If you’re hankering for cake, have cake, but make it a healthy slice. Reaching for sweets that are artificially low in calories and sugar, like diet cola, will make you hungrier in the long run since they’re filled with fake ingredients.
A study at Yale University revealed that artificial sweeteners don’t fool your body into thinking it’s satisfying. In fact, people who regularly consume low-calorie sweet products are more likely to relapse and choose high-calorie alternatives in the future. Basically, if you eat fake food to satisfy your real sugar craving, you’ll just trigger your desire for more sweets. So, eat whole foods whenever you can.
Make It a Treat
Just because you have a sweet tooth doesn’t mean you need to let it control you. You can have a dessert, but don’t have dessert every day. Give into your indulgences on special occasions like a birthday, after a hard day of work, or even just once a week on your dedicated “splurge day.”
Also, never settle for what you’re not craving. If you really want a brownie then have a brownie. By giving your body exactly what it wants, you can avoid binges later on.
Make Sweet Swaps
Most of the time, you can satisfy your craving in a more healthy way. For example:
- Ice Cream: If you’re craving ice cream, make a simple banana ice cream treat, instead. All you need are two frozen bananas, a blender, and a few decadent toppings like peanut butter or chocolate.
- Chocolate: Chocolate isn’t bad for you if you choose 80% dark chocolate, and you eat it in moderation. Dark chocolate might not be as sweet as your typical milk chocolate, but it’s packed full of antioxidants and other nutrients.
- Brownie: If you’re dying for a brownie, try this homemade brownie recipe, which is packed with black beans, whole grains, and dried fruit. That means each brownie is just 146 calories and has 6 grams of fiber and just 3 grams of fat.
You don’t have to ignore your sweet tooth. If you know what you’re doing, you can give in without hurting your health.
Yours in sweetness,
Image by Samantha Hammack