Sugar cravings can be a big problem on a busy day at work! Our bodies will crave sugar when we are overworked, bored, tired or need to feel rewarded. It can be very easy to reach for that 3pm sugar hit only to suffer a sugar crash shortly after. Sugar intake can affect your weight, your energy levels, anxiety and stress levels and increase your risk of chronic diseases such as diabetes, cancer and heart disease in the long run.
So it’s time to ditch the afternoon sugar hit. Here are some of my favourite strategies for avoiding sugar and breaking your sugar habits:
- Don’t keep any sweets, chocolate or lollies in your office or workplace. Have a chat with the others that you work with to make sure they are on the same page. If something sugary is around when you get a craving, the temptation will be too hard to resist!
- If you are genuinely hungry- eat something. Aim for something with some protein and/or good fats to balance appetite and blood sugar levels. Start your work day prepared by packing a healthy afternoon snack that you will look forward to. Some healthy snack ideas are listed below
- Eat mindfully. Sugar binging can get out of control as we eat whilst working and are blissfully unaware as to how much we are actually eating. Be mindful of what you are eating. Prepare your snack on a plate that is portion controlled. Take the time to cut up your fruit etc. into bite size pieces. Eat with a fork or spoon. Chew well and eat slowly. Put as much focus and energy into your snack as you would with any other meal of the day. This works as a distraction while you sit out the sugar craving and means that you will enjoy your snack more
- This may sound silly, but try eating your snack with your non-dominant hand. So, if right handed use your left hand to eat. This avoids mindless eating as you will have to think about every bite that you take.
- Have a herbal tea. This keeps your hands busy and acts as a distraction. Fennel, cinnamon, ginger, peppermint, chamomile, licorice, lemongrass or green tea are all great options. Licorice, cinnamon and fennel tea can help with sugar cravings, as will anything with cinnamon.
- Switch a sweet snack for a salty one. This breaks the sweet addiction. Try tamari almonds, cheese and crackers, kale chips or hommus and celery sticks.
- Every day that you don’t have a sweet treat, add a couple of dollars into a jar. Once you get to the end of 1-2 weeks, buy yourself a special treat. OR save up over the space of a month or 2 and treat yourself to new clothes or a relaxing massage or facial.
Snack ideas- all contain protein for blood sugar balance
- Cheddar cheese (matchbox sized) cut into cubes with strawberries and kiwifruit
- Cottage cheese (1/3 cup) with berries, cinnamon and flaked almonds
- Tuna and cottage cheese ‘dip’ with plain rice crackers
- ½ cup natural yoghurt with berries/kiwi/banana, LSA and chia seeds
- Tamari almonds
- Raw, unsalted nuts and a piece of fruit
- Nut and dried fruit mix
- Hommus with vegetable sticks (carrot, celery, cucumber, carrot)
- Rice cakes/corn thins/ryvita/vitawheats with avocado/nut butter/cottage cheese
- Olives with cheddar cheese and sun dried tomatoes
- Dates x2 covered with natural peanut butter
- Apple wedges spread with almond butter
- Miso soup
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