So, when does your infamous craving approach? At night! Ah, that’s when the sinful hunger strikes tempting you just gorge on to anything you can lay your hands on. Even though you have eaten well all day – the craving strikes and you find yourself heading straight for the wafers, ice cream, left over noodles, chocolates and cookies. In fact, many are well-aware that gorging on to that super rich sugar laden or fried junk makes us feel heavy, defeated and frustrated. However, those late night cravings are so often impossible to resist.
Craving is simply the desire to consume a specific kind of food. If you want to eat doughnuts, grabbing that bowl of soup will not curb your craving. Research shows that women have a night craving for all things sweet – cookies, chocolate and ice cream while men like to binge on to steak, starchy and salty foods. We are likely to eat more in the evening as if there’s a pre-scheduled internal clock in our body. Why does that happen? Research states that this could be a concept associated with evolution.
Humans faced periods of famine at length such that fat stored in the body from post evening meals offers much more survival energy than during the day. Even if the overall calorie intake is same, we tend to lose weight more with morning meals compared to food intake in the evening. But, binging after night fall these days isn’t an act of survival but more of unhealthy eating. Craving cannot be about nutritional deficiency. Hence, it is advisable to always beat back cravings in the evening or prevent from eating post dinner at all.
Why do we crave in the first place? Most of us during our childhood were rewarded with a treat when we had a bad day. Often that treat would be something sugary and it would lift our spirits instantly. Today, as complexities tend to be a part of our lifestyles, a sweet punch is a habit quite hard to break. Hormonal fluctuations can cause sleep deprivation or other physiological conditions driving you to seek out to fatty, sugary foods. Even the thought of delicious foods can lead to intense cravings. Social settings or environment can enhance our urge to indulge.
It is the nighttime when you get to relax and unwind after a long day at work. The kids are asleep and it’s that favorite time of the day when you can sit on the sofa and watch your favorite programs on T.V. Reaching out to a bag of chips or that beverage isn’t unusual. Here’s how you can combat those craving pangs:
- Space out every day meals
When you can eat your breakfast as early after waking up and then space all the day’s food properly, you are less likely to binge at night.
- Consume a fiber enriched dinner
Soluble fibers in diet keep a check on your blood sugar level. Insoluble fibers keep you full through the evening so you don’t want to consider snacking. Start your dinner with a non-starchy vegetable soup or even toss up a large bowl of salad. Keep drinking plenty of water throughout the meal.
- Pushing back dinner time
If you happen to get into snacking every day after dinner, it’s good to consider eating dinner late. This gives you less time to stay awake and snack.
- Do not store unhealthy foods
You are more likely to get into snacking the unhealthy way if your kitchen and fridge is stacked with calorie dense foods. Keeping them away from your home is the best way not to indulge. When you don’t store crap, you’re less likely to eat it.
- Stretch dinner with pre-planned snacks
If you still cannot go without your late night food indulgences, try preparing healthy meals. If you toss up some corn and mashed potato salsa with barbequed chicken in yogurt dip you can relish the tasty meal while leaving little urge to snack later. These can double as snacking items that you would want to crave for and not go for those fattening meals.
- Being busy in things you love to do
Whether it’s helping your kids with their homework or talking to your friends or even just going out with them is a great way to avoid the whole point of eating indulgences altogether. Do something that keeps you occupied and you’ll forget about the craving for good!
NOW IF ALL FAILS, JUST HAVE AN APPLE