Sugar is known to have a negative impact on your dental health. Added sugars can be corrosive to tooth enamel, causing damage that can lead to sensitive teeth, discoloration, and an increased risk for cavities.
It makes sense that people want to reduce their added sugar intake, especially since a diet with too much sugar has also been linked to an increased risk for diabetes, heart disease, and high blood pressure .
But how can you fight sugar cravings as you minimize the amount of added sugar you consume? These top tips will help you kick your need for sugar!
If You’re Hungry, Eat
If you’re craving sugar, there’s a chance that you’re hungry and should take this opportunity to nourish your body. Instead of eating sugar, eat a healthy meal that includes fiber and protein to help keep you full.
It’s also important to drink plenty of water. Often, the body signals that you’re hungry when really, you’re thirsty . Drink a glass of water before eating and be sure to stay hydrated throughout the day to help curb your sugar cravings!
When having a craving, it can help to have a change of environment, especially if you’re in a situation where you’re being tempted by sweets. Go for a short walk or consider exercising regularly to help you stay active and encourage yourself to eat healthy. However, watch out for energy bars and sports drinks, as they often contain added sugar!
Reach for Fruit
Whole fruits contain vitamins, nutrients, water, and fiber to nourish your body. They’re naturally sweet without having the negative side effects of added sugar. If you’re craving sugar, consider having a piece of fruit instead. Excellent fruits that are easy to eat and have on hand include:
However, remember that fruit juices and pureed fruits aren’t quite the same as eating a piece of whole fruit, so don’t make these your go-to options when avoiding added sugar .
Manage Your Stress
Stress can negatively affect your body’s hormones, which can influence hunger regulation. Stress management can help you better balance your cravings and support your body’s health.
Sleep is a crucial element of stress management—when you don’t get enough sleep, your body isn’t able to properly regulate your hunger, which can lead to cravings for sweet, high-calorie foods . Get enough sleep, manage your daily stressors, and do your best to take care of yourself lower stress can help you kick those sugar cravings!
Have a Plan
Sugar cravings can sneak up on you, so it’s important to have a plan and be prepared. Some ways you can do this include:
1. Have healthy snacks on hand. Keep fresh fruits available so that you can enjoy them when a craving strikes!
2. Chew sugarless gum. Sugarless gum has been shown to help prevent tooth decay and may help alleviate your urge for something sweet.
3. Distract yourself. Have a list of a few things you can do instead of eating something sweet, whether it’s journaling, calling a friend, or having a warm beverage.
Reducing your daily intake of added sugar can have numerous health benefits for your body and your smile, but you don’t have to do it alone. Keep these top tips in mind when it comes to tackling those pesky sugar cravings!