Have you ever wondered why that piece of chocolate cake seems to be calling your name or why you just can’t resist one more cookie, while nutritious vegetables just don’t have the same appeal? It’s because of sugar! Sugar creates a hormonal signaling response in our bodies that drives the intense cravings for more. In fact, sugar has been found to be 8 times more addicting than cocaine! No wonder it’s hard to stop eating foods with sugar. The key to eliminating these powerful cravings is fueling your body with the right foods that fill you up, provide lasting energy, balance your hormones, and promote a healthy gut microbiome. You will feel satisfied and be less likely to reach for that sugary treat.
Here are five surprising foods from sauerkraut to collagen that have the power to kick your sugar cravings to the curb!
1. Sauerkraut: Developing a healthy gut microbiota is crucial for balancing our body’s nutritional desires. Fermented foods such as sauerkraut promote the good bacteria in our gut and help to eliminate the bad bacteria that thrives in a sugary environment. The good bacteria from fermented foods helps us digest our food by breaking down compounds we can’t digest on our own. This allows essential nutrients to be absorbed into our bloodstream, preventing micronutrient deficiencies that can leave our bodies craving a quick sugar rush.
2. Collagen Protein Powder: Collagen is a key protein that can reduce sugar cravings by helping you maintain fullness and balance blood sugar levels. Protein is the most satiating macronutrient, and collagen specifically has been identified as 40% more filling than the same amount of whey, soy, or casein proteins. Collagen also contains high levels of the amino acid glutamine which provides energy to the brain and controls insulin levels to regulate blood sugar. A diet high in collagen protein keeps you full longer and prevents a rollercoaster of blood sugar spikes and drops that can lead to sugar cravings and overeating. The great thing about collagen protein is that it tasteless and textureless, so you can add a scoop into your morning coffee, tea, smoothie, juice, or water! It dissolves immediately and isn’t gritty. Because it’s naturally tasteless and not gritty, there’s not additives or sweeteners added to it. It makes it the perfect protein for a sugar detox!
3. Salmon: Salmon is a nutritional powerhouse. It contains high amounts of protein and healthy fats to fuel your body. Salmon is filled with omega-3s that balance blood sugar and insulin levels. It provides lean protein and all the essential amino acids that help to energize and build lean muscle. The perfect combination of healthy protein and fats in salmon promotes protein synthesis and fat burning in the body. Filling up on salmon will provide the healthy energy you need and help to reduce the urge for a sugary snack.
4. Turkey: Turkey provides our body with a key hormone for preventing sugar cravings: serotonin, a chemical neurotransmitter that controls our mood. Scientists have found that reductions in serotonin in our body can lead to sugar cravings and cause us to overeat. While serotonin isn’t found directly in food, the amino acid tryptophan leads to serotonin production in the body. Turkey has high levels of tryptophan that help to promote serotonin production. Pairing turkey with healthy grains can enhance tryptophan absorption and boost serotonin levels-no more sugar cravings.
5. Flax seeds: Flax seeds are a fiber-filled food that slow digestion and help to prevent sugar cravings. Foods high in fiber take longer to move through the GI tract so you stay full longer. And slower digestion optimizes the energy and nutrients absorbed from the intestine into the blood. Fruits, vegetables, and nuts are all good sources of fiber, but flax seeds are particularly beneficial due to their perfect balance of fiber and healthy fats. Incorporate flax seeds into your daily diet and you will have more energy and stay full longer.
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