ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Healthier Ways to Satisfy That Sweet Tooth

Updated on April 10, 2013
Source

As a recovering sweet-tooth junkie, eating a strawberry scone for breakfast; then indulging in a couple of sugar cookies after lunch; along with a large cup of frozen yogurt, drizzled with caramel, and topped with brownie fudge, after dinner had become a normal day for my sweet-tooth lifestyle. My husband never even suspected I was stashing jelly-bellys, caramel drops, candy bars, brownies, butter-pecan cookies, peanut butter cookies, and chocolate chip cookies in my secret hideaway for, “in case of emergencies.”

Thankfully, because I was a workout warrior, as soon as I put in the calories I was able to burn them off, so my secret, sweet-lifestyle was well hidden. However, eating too many sweets can be bad for you in a myriad of ways. Cavities, weight gain and diabetes are the obvious culprits, but over-doing it on sugary treats can lead to mood swings, acne breakouts, heart disease, and some have even linked excess sugar consumption to various forms of cancer.

Normally, when we pine for sweets the unwholesome choices are the ones that we immediately gravitate toward, but if we resolve to pick the treats that are better for us we’ll be making decisions that will not only add needed vitamins and minerals to our diets, but will aid in improving our quality of life, and, as an added benefit, we’ll begin to crave the healthier options.

Below are five treats, which are by no means calorie or sugar-free, but they are packed with nutrients which make them healthier choices.

Dark Chocolate with Nuts
Dark Chocolate with Nuts | Source

Dark Chocolate

Dark chocolate has rich antioxidants, or anti-aging factors, that are good for you, plus this rich candy is satisfying and delectable. Dark chocolate also contains vitamins and minerals, potassium, copper, magnesium and iron. But, not only that, eating two or three small servings per week have been known to reduce blood pressure, lower risk for heart failure, reduce stress, improve cognitive function, and not to mention, researchers found that dark chocolate lessens cravings for other sweets, but, word of note, the darker the chocolate the healthier it is for you.

Nougat with Almond
Nougat with Almond | Source

Nougat Made with Almonds

This classic candy delight, made with egg whites, honey and almonds, has been around for centuries. And, although it’s high in calories, it boasts so many health benefits that is should be at the top of any sweet-cravers go-to goody list. The advantages include: vegetable protein, fiber, vitamin-E, folic acid, calcium, magnesium, and because this nougat contains almonds, it provides healthy fats for the heart and improves blood circulation. Almonds also help build strong bones and teeth, which only increase the healthiness of this delightful indulgence.

Greek Yogurt Parfait
Greek Yogurt Parfait | Source

Greek Yogurt Parfait

Choosing Greek yogurt, over traditional yogurt, is all the rage. That’s because this Mediterranean delight has half the sugar of regular yogurt, double the amount of protein, and half the sodium, plus, it’s loaded with nutrients, like calcium and vitamin D, that are great for your body. If possible, stick to plain yogurt and include fresh fruit, like strawberries and bananas, to sweeten the taste and add nutrition. Strawberries and bananas are packed with vital nutrients such as fiber, vitamin C and potassium. The antioxidants in these fruits also help to fight disease and promote good health.

Fruit Smoothie
Fruit Smoothie | Source

Fruit Smoothie

Because of the concentration of fruits in this filling drink you get more nutrients than just juice alone. You can add frozen blueberries, another high antioxidant fruit, pineapples, which aids in digestion, mangos, which help protect vision, peaches, which is high in vitamin A and helps regulate the immune system, and, as mentioned above, you can’t go wrong with adding strawberries and bananas. Now, don’t panic, but for a supplementary boost of health you can throw in spinach. I know what you’re thinking, but, the fruit will mask the taste. You can also mix in coconut water, an excellent source of electrolytes, which is good for proper muscle contraction and spawning energy into the body. With all of these health benefits in a single serving, this is one sweet-treat that could be consumed on a daily basis.

Unsweetened Dried Mango
Unsweetened Dried Mango | Source

Dried Fruit

Unsweetened dried fruits are some of the healthiest alternatives to eating a sugary snack, and a great way to gratify that reappearing sweet tooth. Specifically, dried mango is viewed as one of the healthiest of the dried fruit family. Like a lot of the treats mentioned this tasty mango snack is high in antioxidants, and rich in vitamins A, C and E, as well as omega-3 and fatty acids, which aid in keeping our skin healthy. And although dried fruit is a healthy snack option, it should be noted that it does contain more sugar than fresh fruit and should be eaten in moderation, just like all the other treats mentioned.

You don’t need to eat an ice cream sundae, or a Snickers bar to satisfy your sugar addiction. There are so many healthy alternatives to choose from that relying on the unhealthiest choice should no longer be the norm. Occasionally, you may still want to reach for that caramel pie or strawberry cake, but if you’re talking about maintaining a healthy lifestyle and adding years to your life, you should probably make the healthier options the new normal for your diet.

How Often Do You Eat Sweets?

See results

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Good information! I can live with the dark chocolate and smoothies for sure. The rest would take a bit of work on my part. :) Thanks for the nutritional information, and have a great weekend.

    • Careermommy profile image
      Author

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Billy, let me know your thoughts if you get a chance to try the nougat, dried fruit or Greek yogurt. LOL. I think you just might enjoy them. Thanks for your comments!

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 4 years ago from Wales

      A wonderful hub for me.

      Voted up and shared.

      Eddy.

    • Louise Lately profile image

      Louise Lately 4 years ago from London, UK

      This is a great hub - I have a big problem with eating too much sugar and I'm always looking for alternatives. One point to note about dark chocolate is that for it to be healthy, it needs to have a high cocoa content ie approx 65% or more I believe. Thanks for a good read.

    • Careermommy profile image
      Author

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Eiddwen, thank you for your vote up and share. That means a lot to me. I hope you're able to get in some good sweet alternatives.

    • Careermommy profile image
      Author

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Hi Louise, thank you for your insight. It is true that with dark chocolate, the darker it is the better. Maybe I will clarify that. I hope these alternatives are helpful. Thank you for reading.

    • kidscrafts profile image

      kidscrafts 4 years ago from Ottawa, Canada

      Great hub! My biggest problem is chocolate! I already switched from milk chocolate to dark chocolate. I think the best way to make good choices for me is to not have tempting sugary things around the house! So I have dried fruits and nuts for snacks.

      Thank you for sharing this hub!

    • Careermommy profile image
      Author

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Kidscrafts, you sound like me! I switched from milk to dark chocolate as well and try to keep healthy snacks around the house. It's hard, but I'm getting better. Thank you for your comments.

    • Louise Lately profile image

      Louise Lately 4 years ago from London, UK

      by the way, the greek yoghurt parfait looks so good I want to eat it through the page!:)

    • Careermommy profile image
      Author

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Louise, thank you! That Greek yogurt parfait is one of my new favorite desserts now.

    • heidithorne profile image

      Heidi Thorne 4 years ago from Chicago Area

      Glad to meet a fellow member of S.A. (Sweetaholics Anonymous). :) I'm active, too, so it doesn't really faze me that much. That being said, I am trying to substitute dried fruits and nuts for other less healthy stuff. But I am thankful that dark chocolate does have health benefits!

    • Careermommy profile image
      Author

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Heidi, welcome to the club! Dried fruit is actually becoming a close friend of mine. It is quite tasty. And, I'm trying to do more nuts too. Thank you for stopping by!

    • moonlake profile image

      moonlake 4 years ago from America

      I have so much trouble cutting sweets out of my life but I have been cutting down. Voted up

    • Careermommy profile image
      Author

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      moonlake, I think a lot of us can relate. Thank you for your comments and vote up!

    • Au fait profile image

      C E Clark 4 years ago from North Texas

      Great alternatives, although I must say they all look like they would work in well with my Pepperidge Farms coconut cake, my cheesecake, my brownies, pecan pie, and my lava cakes, etc. ;) Wonder how Milky Way would taste with dark chocolate? Seriously, these are good alternatives, but I think for me they would end up as additions . . . believe it or not, my favorite thing is salads with lots of veggies.

    • Careermommy profile image
      Author

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Hi Au fait, salad with a lot of veggies is one of my favorite things too, but unfortunately the sweets come after that! Hmmm, I've often wondered what the dark Milky Way would taste like too. Thank you for your comments.

    • jpcmc profile image

      JP Carlos 4 years ago from Quezon CIty, Phlippines

      I enjoy fruit smoothies. It's a great sweet tooth treat plus it has lots of vitamins. I try to combine different fruits. But I just buy those that are in season. :) I'm, graving for a quick fix right now.

    • Careermommy profile image
      Author

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      jpcmc, I love fruit smoothies as well, and there's so much to add to them. Thank you for your comments!

    • janetwrites profile image

      Janet Giessl 4 years ago from Georgia country

      Thank you for sharing those great alternatives. I love all of them but dried fruits have become my favorite one.

    • Careermommy profile image
      Author

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Hi janetwrites, it is my pleasure. Thank you for reading. And, dried fruit is one of my favorites now too, especially the mango!

    • Toytasting profile image

      Toy Tasting 4 years ago from Mumbai

      Hey Careermommy, thank you for sharing this information with us. I am so happy to know that dark chocolate reduces cravings for other sweet things :)

      I really enjoy reading your hubs, Keep up the awesome work, cheers!

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 4 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Awesome ways to avoid the sweet stuff, you a have shown many people the correct way of substituting sweets for the healthy snack

    • Careermommy profile image
      Author

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Hi Toytasting, thank you so much for your kind comments. I'm glad dark chocolate is one of the healthier sweet choices as well, especially since I just enjoyed some yesterday!

    • Careermommy profile image
      Author

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Thanks for commenting DDE. I'm just glad to know that there are satisfying and healthier sweets that taste so good!

    • sweetie1 profile image

      sweetie1 4 years ago from India

      I really like fruit smoothies.. Thanks for sharing this ..I am sure I would try some from this. Greek Yogurt looks promising.

    • Careermommy profile image
      Author

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      sweetie1, fruit smoothies are great, very nutritional. I think if you like the smoothies then you might just like the Greek yogurt as well. Thank you for stopping by.

    • Thelma Alberts profile image

      Thelma Alberts 4 years ago from Germany

      These are great foods for me. I don´t have a sweet tooth, but I do sometimes crave for chocolate and marzipan. Thanks for sharing. Voted up and shared!

    • Careermommy profile image
      Author

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Hi Thelma, thank you for your comments, and thank you for the share! I'm not sure what marzipan is, but I'll have to check it out.

    • khmazz profile image

      Kristen Mazzola 4 years ago from South Florida

      Great ideas! I really enjoyed this hub! Making healthier choices when it comes to cravings is so important! :)

    • Careermommy profile image
      Author

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Khmazz, thank you for your kind words. I figured I was eating so many sweets I had to do something healthy about it.

    • Indian Chef profile image

      Indian Chef 4 years ago from New Delhi India

      Very good hub. I love fruits and they are definitely very good for loosing not only weight but many fruits have lots of fiber and since they have natural sugars, so quite healthy and tasty.

    • Careermommy profile image
      Author

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Indian Chef, thank you for the compliment. It's hard to go wrong with eating fruits. They are a satisfying natural sweet. Thanks for stopping by.

    • Insightful Tiger profile image

      Insightful Tiger 4 years ago

      I have always preferred "real food" to sweets. For most of my life I would rather have some beans and rice over cake.

      However, ever since I was pregnant something changed. I love chocolate now, in fact your article made me remember that I had a box of Godiva dark chocolate pearls in my purse, hee hee.

      Anyway... I really like your hub because all of the tips you give in this article are pain-free and delicious :)

      That nougat with almonds is so very delish. I know it as Turron.

      Now, I have to go get some :) Thanks for sharing, voting up and pinning.

    • Careermommy profile image
      Author

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Insightful Tiger, thank you so much for your kind comments. And, I appreciate the pin! I would love some chocolate right now.

    • Kasman profile image

      Kas 4 years ago from Bartlett, Tennessee

      Yeah, I think I've got the dried fruits and yogurt down pat! But the one thing I didn't think about was eating the nougat or putting spinach in smoothies, sounds quite delicious. I'm a workout warrior as well so I hear ya on knocking those calories off and staying balanced. This is a great hub for my pregnant wife to read! Voting up and I'm sharing career mommy!

    • Careermommy profile image
      Author

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Kasman, thank you for taking a read of my hub. Yeah, the dried fruit and yogurt are two of my favorites as well. Thank you for the votes up and share, and congratulations on your upcoming baby!

    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 4 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      Careermommy, certainly very healthy options here but you do well to caution about being wary of over indulgence. Voted up, useful and interesting. Thanks.

    • Careermommy profile image
      Author

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      rajan jolly, thanks for the votes up. I agree, even over-indulging in healthier options is risky and could counter the positive effects. Thank you for your insight.

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 3 years ago from sunny Florida

      Great tips...I like my sweets.. I admit it. I do try and underline the try...to eat the ones that are not so horrible for me.

      You have offered some that I can add to my list.

      Thanks for sharing. Angels are on the way ps

    • Careermommy profile image
      Author

      Tirralan Watkins 3 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      pstraubie48 lol, trying is good! Hopefully, these healthier tips will help that sweet tooth. It's helped me a great deal. Thank you for your comments.

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 3 years ago from sunny Florida

      Thank you for these postings. I have used some of the box mixes you suggest and actually they do satisfy as they are tasty. Too often things that are better for us are not so great.

      The other suggestions sound good too; I am bookmarking this to refer to later.

      Angels are on the way ps

    • Careermommy profile image
      Author

      Tirralan Watkins 3 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Hi pstraubie48, it's hard to find that right sweet that is also healthy, but at the same time eating that find in moderation. Thank you for the bookmark and your kind comments!

    Click to Rate This Article