With spring finally here, swimsuit season is just around the corner, which means that you may be looking for ways to help you stay healthy and fit so that you can confidently show off by the pool. One road block that may get in your way as you refine your diet and exercise is food cravings, which can hinder you from making smart snack choices throughout the day. Still, it’s possible to get your cravings under control by swapping out junk food for some more wholesome choices that satisfy your body’s real nutritional needs. Here’s a look at the best foods to reach for when you have specific cravings that threaten your diet.
For salt cravings
When you want to chow down on salty foods like potato chips or pretzels, your body probably wants chloride and silicon, which can be found in healthier foods like fatty fish or nuts. Lightly salted pistachios are a great choice, because they provide you with the salt you want along with an antioxidant boost. They also have portion control built in, since shelling pistachios can slow you down when you are ready to binge on snack foods.
For sugar cravings
Your body has a love/hate relationship with sugar and simple starches. These foods provide immediate feel-good sensations thanks to a spike in insulin, which triggers an energy boost along with a spike in tryptophan, resulting in production of serotonin. While these reactions take place, however, the body is quickly burning through the sugary fuel and storing fat as a consequence. Better snack options to swap out for candy or cookies are foods rich in micronutrients that nurture the body. These include broccoli, grapefruit, oranges, grapes, and strawberries. In a pinch, you might also reach for a multivitamin to help nourish the body and minimize your cravings.
For fat cravings
If your mind is set on greasy foods, you may, in fact, need fat, but it should come from healthier sources like cheese, avocados, or nuts. A calcium deficiency may also be the culprit behind cravings for oily foods, so a glass of milk or a spinach salad may be the best fix.
With help from the MeMD blog, you can eat healthier with simple changes in your diet that won’t make you feel as if you are going hungry.