Caving in to cravings is part of our culture, it stimulates our economy and keeps us wanting more. We’re constantly bombarded with illusory images of junk food everywhere we look. They spark an idea within us, maybe it is a good idea to go buy some chips and wash it all down with a bubbly fizz fest? Even if we know we’ll feel horrible afterwards, often we still give in. Advertisers know very well how our minds work, they use techniques to embed their messages into our very subconscious. Do we have to fall for it? Certainly not, and there are some great techniques that can help us regain control of our cravings.
Tip & Tricks for Quashing Junk Food Cravings For Good
Avoid high-glycemic & processed foods
The glycemic index (GI) measures the effects that carbohydrate containing foods have on our blood sugar. It’s important to pay attention to because when we our blood sugar is quickly spiked, it also quickly drops, causing yet another hankering for something sweet to boost us back up again. Most fruits and vegetables are within the low to medium range of the glycemic index, aside from potatoes which are high glycemic. All processed foods, grains and sugars are high on the glycemic index and send our blood sugar through the roof, initiating a perfect stage for the next craving to sneak up on us.
Eat the right types of fats
Diet dictocrats have been lying to us about many things in the interests of Big Pharma, and Agribusiness. Apart from peddling GMO’s and poisonous aspartame they have been spouting lies about healthy fats. Saturated fat in particular has been ruthlessly villanized and thrown into the same category as trans fats, even though the two are worlds apart in their differences. We need saturated fat, the type of fat that is naturally solid at room temperature. Our brains are made up mainly of saturated fat, yet mainstream health practioners recommend avoiding it like the plague, along with cholesterol which our brains are also made of.
Enjoying the benefits of saturated fats helps with sugar cravings because they regulate your blood sugar levels, providing a slow releasing, stable source of energy.
“When you eat saturated fats as part of your meal, they slow down absorption so that you can go longer without feeling hungry. In addition, they act as carriers for important fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K. Dietary fats are also needed for the conversion of carotene to vitamin A, for mineral absorption, and for a host of other biological processes.”
Nourish with foods high in Minerals
Sugary and refined processed foods strip minerals from the body. Logically you would assume that we would seek out mineral rich foods to replenish those lost. However, it doesn’t work that way. We just keep craving more and more sugar, exacerbating the problem.
Parasites & Candida
Many people think parasites are a problem of the third world. Some estimates say up to 90% of North Americans have parasites to a certain extent. Much of the time candida albicans is the culprit, a parasitic yeast overgrowth. All you have to do is look at the little buggers under a microscope and you will be empowered to starve them out of your body.
Parasites feed off sugar and any food that turns into sugar. They can deprive you of energy, vitality, and leave you constantly hungry and craving what fuels them best. Getting rid of parasites can be tricky but following a clean, paleo diet is a great first step. Certain herbal formulas designed for cleansing parasites from the body can make all the difference and get the job done efficiently and effectively. Probiotics (good bacteria) are essential to our digestive health and become underpopulated when we are constantly feeding the bad guys.
Eating unpasteurized fermented foods and taking a probiotic supplement daily is the best way to start recolonizing our friendly gut bacteria.
Another common craving culprit which ties in very closely to the roller coaster blood sugar problem. Because sugars are our brains primary fuel source, blood sugar levels that drop rapidly cause our homeostasis to get all out of whack. This lack of fuel signals the ‘master’ pineal gland in our brain to communicate to our adrenals to release cortisol the ‘stress hormone’ in an attempt to get blood sugar levels back up. Cortisol suppresses immune function and puts us into a fight or flight state which wreaks havoc on our nervous system. When this happens several times a day our adrenal glands quickly become depleted and less efficient.
“Someone with adrenal fatigue has difficulty raising blood sugar back to normal levels after a bout of hypoglycaemia without resorting to caffeine or sugar, but these quick fixes only exacerbate the underlying problem. Adrenal fatigue affects millions of Americans, and is associated with debilitating fatigue, poor immunity, food allergies, low sex drive, poor muscular strength and stamina, cardiovascular and gastrointestinal issues, poor sleep, and tendency to gain weight.” – Dr. Jameth Sheridan ND
Herbs & Superfoods to Help
Chaga mushroom is found growing symbiotically with the northern birch tree. It’s a potent tonic medicine, meaning it helps to balance and regulate all bodily systems weather overactive or under active. There is a whole book written about Chaga by David Wolfe, he dubs it the “King of Medicinal Mushrooms” Indeed it is adaptogenic (adapts to your bodies needs), balances blood sugar, regulates immune function, and furthermore it is the highest antioxidant containing food in existence. If you live in the high Northern Hemisphere perhaps you can find it yourself. This video will show you what it looks like. Surthrival makes a high-quality, high-potency chaga tincture.
Nopal Cactus or “Prickly Pear Cactus” has been used by ancient civilizations in Mexico since the times of the Aztec, Toltec and Olmec peoples. It promotes long term energy, stable blood sugar levels and helps take the burden off the adrenal glands.
Tulsi or “Holy Basil” used in Ayurvedic medicine to calm and induce relaxation. Tulsi is a nourishing and relaxing herb that provides abundant minerals. It is an adaptogen or tonic herb which helps to balance cortisol release and take us out of ‘fight or flight’ mode. Holy basil contains is also an anthelmintic herb, meaning it helps to get rid of parasites in the body.
Licorice Root is a very common herb used in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Used as a tea it is naturally sweet and also used to treat depression making it a double edged sword in squashing sugar cravings. “It (liquorice root) seems to prevent the breakdown of adrenal hormones such as cortisol (the body’s primary stress-fighting adrenal hormone), making these hormones more available to the body.” Ladies, for that time of the month, it is a valuable tool as it contains phytoestrogens and has a mild estrogenic effect, helping tone down those PMS symptoms, like hankering for a pint of ice cream.
Scram by Healthforce is a great product to rid the body of parasites with the use of time tested herbs, like cloves, black walnut, wormwood and chanca piedra. In combination with a clean paleo diet this formula is effective against 100 known pathogens in adult and developmental stages, fungus and yeasts. We all have some of that, so doing a little cleanse can increase energy and well being, and kick those cravings ten-fold.
For me it feels like the more knowledge you have about just how damaging most modern foods are, the easier it is to stay away from them. I’m not saying don’t eat ice cream ever again, it’s just a nice feeling to have control over our impulses.
What are your favourite ways to fight food cravings?