Stop your cravings with purple fruits/veggies and power of your mind

purple.JPGI love purple yams so one day I was eating plums from my trees and it helped me curve my cravings for sweet. So I searched for resveratrol and plums which led me to the following info:

  1. Grapes – Containing many antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, all grapes are beneficial for your health. However, darker skinned grapes (deep purple to black) contain significantly more resveratrol. Found on the skin of dark-skinned grapes and other fruits and vegetables with a reddish or purplish pigment, resveratrol is responsible for the health benefits attributed to red wine. Experts believe resveratrol helps relax the arterial walls, decrease arterial pressure and promote healthful blood circulation. It has been shown to prevent cancer, lessen inflammation, improve blood sugar control, reduce blood pressure and improve cholesterol levels.
  2. Plums – This stone fruit is a great source of fiber, potassium, Vitamin A, Vitamin B2 and Vitamin C. Because a plum’s potassium level is so high, it can help manage high blood pressure and lower stroke risk. Plum consumption has been associated with helping control blood sugar; while dried plums – otherwise known as prunes – are known to promote regular bowel movements.
  3. Red Cabbage – Containing significantly more beneficial antioxidants than green cabbage, the rich purple color of red cabbage reflects it concentration of anthocyanins. In addition, red cabbage contains 36 different types of antioxidants as well as 6-8 times more Vitamin C than green cabbage. When steamed, this versatile, cruciferous vegetable possesses a significant cholesterol-lowering ability. When your diet is not full of this understated vegetable, supplementing with Cholesterol Support can help keep cholesterol levels in check.
  4. Purple Corn – Although not readily available in most supermarket produce sections, purple corn is extremely high in antioxidants. Dr. Monica Giusti, assistant professor of food science at Ohio State University, conducted research on several anthocyanin-rich extracts on human colon cancer cells. She found that purple corn was the most potent, in that it took the least amount of extract to cut cancer cell numbers in half. Keep your eyes open for products made from purple corn meal, including purple tortilla chips, cereals, snack bars and corn syrup. Although not as healthy as eating purple fruits and vegetables, purple corn offers more antioxidant benefits than its non-purple counterparts.
  5. Purple Carrots – Offering greater nutrition than their orange cousins, purple carrots are rich with anthocyanins and pro-Vitamin A carotenoids. These substances help with weight management, blood glucose control, fight H. Pylori (bacteria that can lead to stomach ulcers and urinary tract infections), cancer cell inhibition and cholesterol reduction. In an Australian study published in a 2005 edition of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers found that the quantity of carotenoids consumed improved glucose metabolism and was associated with a reduced risk of Type 2 diabetes.

And do not forget the power of your mind and with help from the following tips to stop your cravings:

 

1. Drink Water

Thirst is often confused with hunger or food cravings.

If you feel a sudden urge for a specific food, try drinking a large glass of water and wait a few minutes. You may find that the craving fades away, because your body was actually just thirsty.

Furthermore, drinking plenty of water may have many health benefits. In middle-aged and older people, drinking water before meals can reduce appetite and help with weight loss.

Bottom Line: Drinking water before meals may reduce cravings and appetite, as well as help with weight loss.

2. Eat More Protein

Eating more protein may reduce your appetite and keep you from overeating.

It also reduces cravings, and helps you feel full and satisfied for longer.

One study of overweight teenage girls showed that eating a high-protein breakfast reduced cravings significant.

Another study in overweight men showed that increasing protein intake to 25% of calories reduced cravings by 60%. Additionally, the desire to snack at night was reduced by 50%.

Bottom Line: Increasing protein intake may reduce cravings by up to 60% and cut the desire to snack at night by 50%.

3. Distance Yourself From the Craving

When you feel a craving, try to distance yourself from it.

For example, you can take a brisk walk or a shower to shift your mind onto something else. A change in thought and environment may help stop the craving.

Some studies have also shown that chewing gum can help reduce appetite and cravings (7, 8).

Bottom Line: Try to distance yourself from the craving by chewing gum, going on a walk or taking a shower.

4. Plan Your Meals

If possible, try to plan your meals for the day or upcoming week.

By already knowing what you’re going to eat, you eliminate the factor of spontaneity and uncertainty.

If you don’t have to think about what to eat at the following meal, you will be less tempted and less likely to experience cravings.

Bottom Line: Planning your meals for the day or upcoming week eliminates spontaneity and uncertainty, both of which can cause cravings.

5. Avoid Getting Extremely Hungry

Hunger is one of the biggest reasons why we experience cravings.

To avoid getting extremely hungry, it may be a good idea to eat regularly and have healthy snacks close at hand.

By being prepared, and avoiding long periods of hunger, you may be able to prevent the craving from showing up at all.

Bottom Line: Hunger is a big reason for cravings. Avoid extreme hunger by always having a healthy snack ready.

6. Fight Stress

Stress may induce food cravings and influence eating behaviors, especially for women (9, 10, 11).

Women under stress have been shown to eat significantly more calories and experience more cravings than non-stressed women.

Furthermore, stress raises your blood levels of cortisol, a hormone that can make you gain weight, especially in the belly area.

Try to minimize stress in your environment by planning ahead, meditating and generally slowing down.

Bottom Line: Being under stress may induce cravings, eating and weight gain, especially in women.

7. Practice Mindful Eating

Mindful eating is about practicing mindfulness, a type of meditation, in relation to foods and eating.

It teaches you to develop awareness of your eating habits, emotions, hunger, cravings and physical sensations.

Mindful eating teaches you to distinguish between cravings and actual physical hunger. It helps you choose your response, instead of acting thoughtlessly or impulsively.

Eating mindfully involves being present while you eat, slowing down and chewing thoroughly. It is also important to avoid distractions, like the TV or your smartphone.

One 6-week study in binge eaters found that mindful eating reduced binge eating episodes from 4 to 1.5 per week. It also reduced the severity of each binge.

Bottom Line: Mindful eating is about learning to recognize the difference between cravings and actual hunger, helping you choose your response.

8. Get Enough Sleep

Your appetite is largely affected by hormones that fluctuate throughout the day.

Sleep deprivation disrupts the fluctuations, and may lead to poor appetite regulation and strong cravings .

Studies support this, showing that sleep-deprived people are up to 55% more likely to become obese, compared to people who get enough sleep).

For this reason, getting good sleep may be one of the most powerful ways to prevent cravings from showing up.

Bottom Line: Sleep deprivation may disrupt normal fluctuations in appetite hormones, leading to cravings and poor appetite control.

9. Eat Proper Meals

Hunger and a lack of key nutrients can both cause certain cravings.

Therefore, it’s important to eat proper meals at mealtimes. This way, your body gets the nutrients it needs and you won’t get extremely hungry right after eating.

If you find yourself in need of a snack between meals, make sure it’s something healthy. Reach for whole foods, such as fruits, nuts, vegetables or seeds.

Bottom Line: Eating proper meals helps prevent hunger and cravings, while also ensuring that your body gets the nutrients it needs.

10. Don’t Go to the Supermarket Hungry

Grocery stores are probably the worst places to be when you are hungry or have cravings.

First, they give you easy access to pretty much any food you could think of. Second, supermarkets usually place the unhealthiest foods at eye level.

The best way to prevent cravings from happening at the store is to shop only when you’ve recently eaten. Never — ever — go to the supermarket hungry.

Bottom Line: Eating before you go to the supermarket helps reduce the risk of unwanted cravings and impulsive buying.

11. Green juice, fresh with celery, parsley, ginger, carrots, cucumber and cooked spinach/kale.

Take Home Message

Cravings are very common. In fact, more than 50% of people experience cravings on a regular basis .

They play a major role in weight gain, food addiction and binge eating .

Being aware of your cravings and their triggers makes them much easier to avoid. It also makes it a lot easier to eat healthy and lose weight.

Author: connie dello buono

Health educator, author and enterpreneur motherhealth@gmail.com or conniedbuono@gmail.com ; cell 408-854-1883 Helping families in the bay area by providing compassionate and live-in caregivers for homebound bay area seniors. Blogs at www.clubalthea.com Developing a new site, www.avatarcare.net , for early cancer detection using genetics tests, telemedicine with electronic appointment scheduling with doctors, video chat with doctors, matching care providers with health consumers and a health concierge for all to reduce chronic care cost, find cancer cure and coordinate health care using predictive medicine and participatory.

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