All week I have been craving comfort food. Spaghetti with meat balls, macaroni and cheese, oatmeal raisin cookies. Yum! It made me think for a minute. I mean when we’re younger we are able to just eat whatever we want- add a little more cardio and BAM those extra calories are just gone. It seems (and unfortunately is scientifically proven) that once we hit about 35, shifts in hormones cause our metabolism to slow down. All of a sudden one extra macaroni noodle can add an ounce of fat onto each thigh. Not to worry my young padawans, I’m going to share a list I’ve created over the week that may help curb the cravings.
- Sip hot tea or coffee.
- Visit a friend in a near- by cubicle. Tell them you need a little break, ask them how they are doing and just listen to them. Sometimes getting your mind off of the craving (or whatever is causing it- see #4) miraculously causes it to disappear.
- Most cliche but smart- keep healthy snacks by your desk at work. Nuts are great. I know, I know- eating a serving of nuts (like five nuts) is almost pointless to satiate an appetite. BUT, I promise you- eat them slowly and add a few apple slices and its like apple pie. Heat the apple up in the microwave and chop the nuts over it. Yum. Eat it slowly and really enjoy it- don’t just eat it while reading something on line. I think speed and paying attention/enjoying the food is key.
- Probably the most important; therapist Caroline Madden, MFT suggests asking yourself “what is the root of the craving? Is it hormonal? Is it psychological?” I can see an advantage to thinking about the root here. Don’t over think it. “If its two days before that time of the month” Caroline says, “then it makes sense your craving chocolate.” If its psychological, #2 will work well for you. If you haven’t eaten in five hours, and your last meal was a piece of lettuce you may actually just be hungry- in which case #1 and/or #3 can help to hold you over until you can eat a real meal.
On the flip side, life is short. In the words of my adorable mother (who I believe was misquoting Erma Bombeck) “The women on the titanic should have had dessert”. Moderation is really the key here. Have some chocolate or cookies or pasta. Just don’t do it every day and don’t eat two pounds of it. If you are craving something that badly, decide if this is the day you want to have that bite. If it is, savor it and enjoy it. Seize the day!
PS According to my trainer, Josh Landis, working out regularly can slow down hormonal shifts and help us stay in shape as we age. He’s great- feel free to refer to his blog for articles and workout ideas- Landismovementsystems
If anyone is reading this and has other suggestions- please share. 🙂
Have a fantastic weekend!