"Food cravings are a dieter's worst enemy. Sometimes it can be difficult to tell if your body is actually hungry or you are just bored or thirsty. Many of us dream of eating our favourite junk food without gaining weight and that would be amazing but it is not a reality. However, it is possible to make sure you keep your calorie intake within the healthy limits and control the urge to binge as well," says Dr Rohini Patil, MBBS, Nutritionist & Founder - Nutracy Lifestyle.
So, here are her incredibly effective suggestions that help you eat healthily and avoid bingeing:
Count on caffeine
"Coffee helps to break down calories and burn fats. Not only does it have antioxidants and nutrients, but it is also a strong appetite suppressant. If you drink a cup of naturally brewed coffee 30 minutes to four hours before a meal, it helps to keep hunger at bay. However, do not add cream, sugar or syrups as they contain a lot of calories."
Make cardio bae
"Exercises such as cycling, running, and swimming actually reduces appetite by changing the levels of hormones which drive our state of hunger. It reduces activation of the brain region which lowers the desire to eat."
Amp up the protein
"The body takes longer to digest protein than carbs making you feel full for longer. So, a high-protein diet greatly reduces cravings and naturally reduces calorie-intake. It makes you feel full, eat less and also helps lose fat. Foods such as eggs, chicken, nuts etc are a rich source of protein. Protein also prevents muscle loss."
Eat fruits and veggies
"Fruits and vegetables are rich in fibre that promotes a feeling of fullness. Ít reduces appetite. You can eat then in the form of salads, soups and so much more. Green, leafy veggies such as spinach increases the level of leptin that controls the sense of hunger by telling you when you are full. If hunger and cravings keep haunting you, don't forget to eat these leafy greens. Your body will not only get beneficial nutrients, but it will also helpful for weight loss."
"Drinking water before a meal reduces your calorie intake and keeps you hydrated. Thirst and hunger cravings are often confused. To conquer this, drink a large glass of water and then wait a few minutes. You will often find the cravings go away."
Hit the snooze button
"Make it a point to get at least 7-8 hours of sleep at night. When you don't get enough sleep, it increases the level of leptin, the hormone that controls your food cravings. Improper sleep patters also increases the risk of obesity."
Eat more chocolate!
"Dark Chocolate is bitter in nature which reduces cravings for sweets and helps to reduce hunger. It increases the feeling of fullness and helps to reduce the process of digestion."