- Diet & Weight Loss
Dessert Diet Tips: Treats that Satisfy Sugar Cravings Without Ruining a Diet
Don't Lose The Sugar Cravings Battle
A bad sugar craving can derail a good diet faster than you can finish a mini Reese's Peanut Butter Cup or York Peppermint Patty.
When you start a diet, sugar cravings remain very strong for the first three or four days until all processed sugar is out of your system. Even after the sugar works its way out of your body, you may still feel a pang of wanting, needing sugar. This is your mind playing tricks on you, and it is in the interest of your diet and your self-esteem to resist the craving as best you can.
After all, if you cave and eat something sugary, you are back to square one and will take three or four days to have a sugar-free system.
Resist Temptation! There are foods you can eat that will satisfy your sweet tooth without the sugar and fat load of a proper dessert, and other foods that make the sweet craving go away altogether.
How do you fight a powerful sugar craving? Try these foods!
Personally, I try not to eat Nutra Sweet or other artificial sweeteners when I am watching my diet. One sweet-tooth-satisfying solution that has worked for me is herbal tea likeYogi Licorice Mint Mint Tea or Constant Comment or an herbal Chai. The other is a glass of milk. I'm always surprised by how sweet a glass of milk tastes.
If it's a real dessert you want sans sugar, and also without fake sugar, I like to finish a meal with fresh whipped ricotta cheese and fresh figs or blueberries. The ricotta cheese is richer than whipped cream, and has a definite sweet and savory and creamy thing going on.
Another obvious solution is fruit — clementine oranges, an in-season peach, cherries, bananas and cantaloupe are all naturally sweet. I like to keep a cantaloupe cut up in my refrigerator so it is easily available when my sweet tooth strikes.
Here's why I avoid fake sweeteners. It's true that Splenda and the like don't have sugar and all the calories that come with a sugar-sweetened snack. But artificial sweeteners can mimic sugar, your body and your brain react as if they have had sugar, so you are not long-term winning the battle over sugar.
That said, sometimes what you are craving is dessert. Real dessert, not a fruit salad.
In those situations, if you also are watching calories, I like Sugar-Free Jello. Fat-free, Sugar-Free Jello Pudding is another good substitute, since it will give you a serving of nonfat milk, too. (I actually make it with 1% milk.)
Skinny Cow Ice Cream Sandwiches are good when you absolutely need to eat ice cream. So is Sorbet. This is naturally fat free, and gourmet grocery stores have more natural versions that use less sugar.
Some savory snacks like Kashi TLC 7-Grain Crackers and Somersaults have a natural sweetness to them that may satisfy the hankering for sugar that you have. So might a Nonfat Yogurt like Dannon Light & Fit or Yoplait.
Try to fight the sugar craving. Chances are that it will pass. But if you absolutely have to have sugar, that's okay. Enjoy it. Just do so in moderation.