How To Indulge Your Sweet Tooth In A Healthier Way
Having a sweet tooth is a totally normal part of life. You enjoy a slice of chocolate cake at a friend’s birthday party, you share a blueberry muffin with your daughter during your weekly coffee date, and you love baking pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving. I have been known to enjoy those things, too. You don’t have to give those sweet foods up, but you can probably tell that this is not the healthiest habit. Here are 9 tips to help you indulge your sweet tooth and still feel good.
Some people have more of a sweet tooth than others. It’s not right or wrong, it’s just the way that it is. I love sorbet but you might love chocolate chip cookies more. I did some research and came up with some ideas to help you indulge your sweet tooth in a healthier way especially for those who are overweight.
1.) Keep the rest of your diet sugar-free.
Did you know that jarred tomato sauce and salad dressings can have a lot of sugar? I know it can be overwhelming when you head to the grocery store and realize that you’re not sure which products to buy anymore. But if you want to save the sugar calories for when they really count, it’s a good idea to buy sauces or other food items that don’t have any sugar in them.
Here are some easy things to make yourself:
- Salad dressings (mix olive oil, balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, salt and pepper)
- Tomato sauce (boil canned tomatoes, garlic, basil, other spices you like)
2.) Treat yourself once a week.
If you eat cookies every day for a month, sure, you might still love them. They are cookies, after all, and they are delicious. But you might not really enjoy them anymore. People say that after the first bite or two, the excitement factor wears off and you don’t even really taste the food anymore.
If you can treat yourself once a week, you can save the treats for when they really matter. So if you know that you’re throwing a dinner party on Saturday night, you can make your signature apple pie and know that you’re getting that sweet treat then.
3.) Eat more vegetables.
Sounds boring, right? Who wants to eat vegetables, especially green ones?
The thing is that if you include more vegetables in your diet, you will feel so good and have so much energy and you won’t crave sugar as much. You want to keep feeling this way and you will keep making healthier food choices.
4.) Choose fruit for snacks and dessert.
I know that if you’re craving a chocolate bar at 3 p.m., an apple or banana might not sound all that appealing, but this is honestly a good way to lower your sugar intake.
You might be thinking, doesn’t fruit have sugar? Yes, but it is naturally occurring sugar, and it won’t raise your blood sugar levels the way that your beloved chocolate will.
Give fruit a try for snacks and even for dessert.
Here are some easy and delicious fruit dessert ideas:
- Grill some bananas
- Grill peaches or other stone fruit
- Make dairy-free ice cream by blending frozen bananas with almond milk
5.) Focus on healthy fats.
If you want to know Melissa McCarthy’s weight loss secret, here is one of them: she included healthy fats in her diet.
There is some research linking good fats to weight loss and reduced sugar cravings.
So go ahead and eat eggs for breakfast (including the yolks, which are very important), add some avocado and olive oil to your salad at lunch, and don’t forget fatty fish like salmon.
Some experts say that if you really want to eat something sweet, that’s because your meal didn’t have enough protein and fat, so eating fat can help with those cravings.
6.) Swap sugar for other alternatives.
Why not make your trademark and beloved chocolate chip cookies with maple syrup or honey instead of white sugar? You won’t even notice that you’re not using white, refined sugar because those healthier, more natural alternatives are honestly just as sweet.
Hey, you might even find that you love the taste of honey in your cookies, and then you’ll be so glad that you made the switch.
7.) Enjoy cinnamon.
Do you put brown sugar in your morning cup of coffee? You can always try some cinnamon or nutmeg instead. Those spices are pretty sweet and will seem more exciting than black coffee if that’s not something that you love, but they will be sugar-free.
1 tablespoon of cinnamon even has some calcium, which is great.
You can also put cinnamon on your oatmeal or sweet potatoes, and that’s a great way to feel like you’re eating sweet foods while keeping things pretty low in sugar.
8.) Snack more often.
If you don’t get hungry in-between meals, then don’t worry about snacking. If you do, then you might want to have a snack before lunch or in the mid-afternoon.
You can make a really delicious and sweet (yet low sugar) smoothie for a snack. Try coconut milk, half a banana, whatever berries you love, and some protein powder if you want. This will make you feel like you’re indulging your sweet tooth in a healthier way.
9.) Try dates.
Have you ever had a date? Yes, of course you’ve been on a first date (and it might have been good or horrible) but you might not have had the food dates.
Dates are incredibly sweet and taste just like caramels. You will think that you’re indulging when you eat them. The good news is that they have fiber and magnesium, so you will be getting something more than just sugar.
If you have a big sweet tooth and feel like you’re a bit of a sugar monster (hey, it’s okay – we all get like that sometimes), then these 9 tips should help you get your sugar cravings in check… while still enjoying your food and your life. Because both of those things are definitely meant to be enjoyed.