How To Control Your Cravings | Eat Clean

Written by Sarah Curran

Don’t Give In To Those Cravings

One of the most common barriers to sticking to a nutrition plan is the pesky cravings that can derail all your hard work if you indulge in them too often or excessively! Getting a quick bite doesn’t always result in something healthy, that’s why we’re here to help!


Staying in on a Saturday night and watching reality TV doesn’t always require chocolate, sugar and tonnes of carbs! Check out these tips to help you get control of those cravings and reach your goals!

sugary food

Change Your Mindset


Mindset is a huge factor that can make or break your success with a dietary plan. Instead of seeing foods as good and bad which can encourage an unhealthy relationship with food, simply view it for what it is, fuel which should be enjoyed.


Be mindful of what you are eating in terms of portion size and be aware of the calorie load in different foods. By sticking to an overall macro budget, you can eat a majority of whole and healthy foods while still allowing some treats in that fit into your allowance.

Be Prepared


Often we eat junk food out of convenience rather than actually preferring it to a healthier alternative. By having a stash of healthy options available to you, you are less likely to simply choose a particular food out of convenience that may cause you to blow your daily calorie or macro allowance out of the water!


Having some freezer friendly dinners is a great way to avoid temptation. Add a  selection of macro friendly snacks to nibble on, trust me it will make your life a lot easier!

Don’t Allow Yourself To Become Too Hungry


Try not to leave too long a gap between meals. If you allow yourself to get too hungry, it will be trickier to be mindful of what nutritional choices you make. You will also tend to gravitate towards less constructive choices if you allow your appetite to get the better of you.


Distraction Is The Key


Sometimes when cravings hit, boredom can play a huge role in the issue. If you know it is a craving as opposed to genuine hunger, simply choose an activity to do that will take your mind off the food in question. This could be as simple as taking a walk or as relaxing as having a soak in the bath, but whatever you choose, distraction is a powerful tool in banishing those cravings!

Know Your Triggers


We all have our triggers and weaknesses when it comes to food, for me, it’s birthday cake and Chinese buffet food. If you can recognise your triggers, you can come up with an action plan to manage them.


For example, I agree with myself before I set foot in a buffet that I will limit myself to one plate and at least a third of that has to be vegetables of some sort, and of course, I allow myself some dessert too, just not all the desserts on the table. This allows me the freedom of enjoying the buffet, without getting myself banned for eating all the food.

Get Enough Sleep


Sleep plays such a huge role in our appetite. If you don’t allow yourself enough time to get ample shut-eye, you can expect the hormonal response in your brain to lead to a whole lot of cravings the next day. For this reason, take the time to establish a good bedtime routine and try to avoid scrolling through social media till the early hours.


Indulge In Moderation


It’s never a good idea to ban any foods from your diet, least of all those ones you love. Making foods ‘forbidden’ is a sure-fire way to set yourself up for failure. Instead, indulge mindfully and in moderation so that you can build in your favourite treats to your plan without encouraging a binge eating session out of pure deprivation.


Having a healthy relationship with all foods should be the aim of the game, and when you achieve this, eating to reach your goals will become a whole lot easier for you.

Keep Trigger Foods Out Of Sight


With that said, out of sight out of mind comes to the forefront in the name of making your nutritional plan easier to follow. If you find a certain food is extremely difficult to enjoy in moderation, don’t torture yourself by leaving it out in the open calling your name every time you go to fill up your water bottle. Put it in a high press out of view so at the very least you have to do a calf raise to reach it.

Try using some of these tips to help keep your cravings at bay and stay consistent with your nutrition plan!

Our articles should be used for informational and educational purposes only and are not intended to be taken as medical advice. If you’re concerned, consult a health professional before taking dietary supplements or introducing any major changes to your diet.

Faye Reid

Faye Reid

Writer and expert

Faye Reid has a Bachelor of Science in Sport and Exercise Physiology and a Master of Science in Exercise Physiology and Sports Nutrition. Faye has worked with numerous high-profile organisations, such as Men's Health, Sky Sports, Huddersfield Giants, Warrington Wolves, British Dressage and GB Rowing, providing her expert sports science support. Find out more about Faye's experience here: She puts her passion into practice as goal attack for her netball team, and in competitive event riding.

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