Are you constantly craving certain foods? Do you find at times you eat everything in sight? Do you constantly fall off every diet you try only to gain more weight?
If you answered, “YES,” to even one of these questions then it’s time…it’s time for us Sugar Junkies to UNITE!
Cravings are one of those things that happen when your body is out of balance. Balance can be found when you do not have the feeling of deprivation and/or frustration. The feeling of deprivation will cause cravings to accelerate!
Now, bare with me for a few seconds as I put my nutrition degree to work as it is really important to understand the WHY so you can figure out WHAT!
The three main macronutrients in our diet are:
Each nutrient is really important and our body needs to have a good balance of each of these to be in sync.
- Carbohydrates are our fast energy…all carbohydrates break down to sugar (called glucose)! Yes, even sweet potatoes, brown rice and whole wheat products. Now, with that being said, our whole grain or whole wheat products that contain fiber break down at a slower pace, but they still break down to glucose!
If you eliminated all carbohydrates from your diet, it would leave your body lacking energy as it needs the glucose for all functions of the body even the brain.
On the flip side, if all you ate all day was carbohydrate by itself your body would break it down and use it up within 2-4hours. That results in your body craving more “sugar” or glucose every 2-4 hours!
- Protein is important in meal planning as it keeps us full for longer. Protein can not give us instant energy like carbohydrate because it breaks down into amino acids…not glucose. The process of making amino acids takes longer in our bodies. Protein will stay in our body for close to 6-8 hours.
- Fat is what helps to stabilize blood sugar long term! Fat is that safety mechanism that allows us to have control over long periods of time. Fat breaks down into fatty acids and stays with us for 8-10 hours.
Now imagine if all you ate for breakfast was oatmeal. Yes, oatmeal is great because it’s high in fiber and contains the carbohydrate to fuel our body. Unfortunately, if all you ate was oatmeal within 2-4 hours you would be hungry again and REALLY hungry! Guess what you will crave?? Yup..you guessed it more SUGAR (aka Carbohydrate)!
So, how could you change this meal to give more balance? Oatmeal with Walnuts (the oatmeal will provide fiber rich carbohydrate with the fat and protein in the walnuts)!
The same holds true for those of you “dieting” or being highly restrictive in your diet. If the body does not have the correct balance of nutrients it will crave what it needs!
Eliminate all carbohydrates = Crave Sweets!
Eliminate all fats = Hungry more Often = Crave Fatty Foods!
Eliminate all Protein = Blood Sugar Spike = Crave Carbohydrates!
Now, I want you to look into your diet! What are seeing in the article that may pertain to you?
I love to hear from all of you, feel free to comment below!
Dana Snook, RDN, CDE, CIC