Marks Daily Apple
Serving up health and fitness insights (daily, of course) with a side of irreverence.
17 Oct

5 Tips to Avoid Temptation

1. Drink a glass of water

Sometimes when you have a craving for something sweet, you are simply dehydrated. Drink a glass of cool water to see if that quells your craving.

2. Don’t surround yourself with it!

If the chips are in the pantry or the pastries are in the bread drawer, it’s that much harder to say no. Don’t surround yourself with these temptations, genius! The “company” and the “kids” will do just fine without having unhealthy treats at the ready – and so will you. While we all face temptations at work and in public, at home, it’s fairly easy to control what you eat, so don’t add to the temptation. Hint: see if you can get your boss and team to agree to have only water and reduced-calorie juices or diet sodas instead of more sugary fare. If your company serves lunches, ask about getting healthier options. And when succumbing to the vending machine, go for the nuts instead of chips or candy.

3. Eat a piece of fruit or nuts

Don’t wait for your blood sugar to get so low that you scarf down whatever sugary treat happens to float by when you are weak and hungry. Keep fruit and nuts or string cheese at the ready so you have a reasonably healthy treat when you have a hunger pang or craving. Fruit and nuts both offer a good mix of fiber and vitamins to help you feel sated – and the nuts offer additional value with protein and fat.

4. Brush your teeth

Sometimes cravings come out of sheer boredom. Perk up your mouth and keep your hands busy by brushing your teeth. This isn’t a “cure” for cravings, but it can help if you’re dealing with idle time and find yourself snooping in the fridge.

5. Remind yourself it will still be there anytime.

Thanks to our “primal” blueprint, humans are naturally wired to hoard and to feast. But in our modern times food is nearly always in abundant supply. Remind yourself that you don’t have to have the chocolate cake or the donut just because it’s there – it will still be there next time you pass by or stop in at your favorite restaurant. Allow yourself the occasional indulgence, so that you know you always have a treat to look forward to – just not today.

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Imagine you’re George Clooney. Take a moment to admire your grooming and wit. Okay, now imagine someone walks up to you and asks, “What’s your name?” You say, “I’m George Clooney.” Or maybe you say, “I’m the Clooninator!” You don’t say “I’m George of George Clooney Sells Movies Blog” and you certainly don’t say, “I’m Clooney Weight Loss Plan”. So while spam is technically meat, it ain’t anywhere near Primal. Please nickname yourself something your friends would call you.

  1. I think I need this pasted on the interiors of my eyelids.

    I am so notoriously bad at avoiding temptation. However, when I do have some temperance, I find that my best options are to just drink water until my hunger for bad stuff passes or to brush my teeth. Those are my top two.

    Sometimes, in order to avoid eating chocolate, I’ll snack on cashews or raw almond butter, but, alas, nuts are another one of my frequent cravings, and I’ll usually end up giving myself a stomach ache eating too many nuts or nut butters.

    Mike Drew wrote on October 17th, 2007
  2. Rule #2 is especially hard living in places like New York City, where on every block there’s a handful of places with displays chock full of muffins, pastries, cakes, etc. It inspires a lot of confidence in your will power if you’re able to just say no, no, no, and no again.

    Travis wrote on October 18th, 2007
  3. The toughest part of this for me is getting past the lobby at work. Like this morning–a table full of Crispy Creme donuts because someone got promoted. This happens around here all the time–baked goods galore. I’m very motivated at this point so I’m doing fine; however, it was this culture that got me in trouble in the first place! But the worse is yet to come–the annual Christmas feast of office glutony! :-)

    Dave C. wrote on October 18th, 2007
  4. Great tips, I love the one about teeth brushing. I hadn’t thought of it, but now I’m definitely going to do it. Replacing a bad habit with a good one instead of just trying to quit the bad habit, that seems more doable somehow.

    Lemur wrote on October 18th, 2007
  5. Could sugar-free gum be added to the list, if not used too frequently?

    Oxybeles wrote on October 18th, 2007
  6. Travis-
    I was in New York City. It was cold and I could smell those warm cinnamon almonds(from some vender) a mile away.

    Crystal wrote on October 18th, 2007
  7. Always i am having bad breath from the tongue.
    I myself identify the bad breath.
    so pls give me tips to cure bad breath

    yuva wrote on November 30th, 2007
  8. That little bunny is so cute. It is what I used to feel like. Little and sneaky. Now I eat right 98% of the time and have a small indulgence occasionally. Not more than one item a week, one meal only. The list is really good. I would add, go do a craft, hobby or call a friend. These all work well too.

    Barbara wrote on March 12th, 2008
  9. I know this is a little late, but I have been trying to go primal for a few years now, and I’ve found that one of the greatest things for my little cravings is gum, in a way. I buy bags of chicle gum base. They have no nutritional value, little to no synthetic elements, and satisfy that “oral fixation” that comes with quitting snack food.

    Lurker wrote on September 2nd, 2011
  10. I’ve been trying to live primally fora while now, and I read a lot on Marks Daily Apple, and sometimes I get confused with some seemingly conflicting information. In this post it says “don’t wait for your blood sugar to get so low that you scarf down whatever…” but if you’re living primally, shouldn’t your blood sugar not be spiking so you wouldn’t have to worry about this? Or does your blood sugar naturally and gradually start to drop when your fuel source runs out, and when you start to get hungry, that’s the signal, is that blood sugar is low, even if you’re eating good, slowly released and non-insulin spiking carbs? Hopefully this question makes sense, and hopefully someone can answer it! Thanks!

    Audrey wrote on May 14th, 2012
  11. Here’s a little tip I found useful while cutting calories and my friend used while giving up evening snacks.

    Take a bath. Make it a nice one with whatever you like, a bath bomb bought with vending machine money, epsom salts, fragrant oils, whatever floats your boat.

    try music, a book, candles, make it into a full pampering session if you like –

    This gets you out of the “food” zone and into the spa zone. Plus makes you feel and look good. If you have the boredom nibbles painting the nails is a good option too. :)

    retemirable wrote on July 15th, 2013

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