Unhealthy food cravings can wreak havoc on your health and weight if left unchecked.

Dietitians from the Department of Dietetics at Singapore General Hospital (SGH), a member of the SingHealth group, offers easy tips to help you resist your craving for sweet and salty foods.

6 Simple tips to beat unhealthy food and snack cravings

  1. Regain control! Tell yourself “I don’t” rather than “I can’t” if you crave certain foods. This will give you a feeling of control and empowerment over what you eat.

  2. Set a daily quota of calories for yourself and keep a food journal. Recording the number of calories you consume every day. If the food you are craving exceeds your daily quota of calories, you have a good reason to say no to it.

  3. Allow yourself to eat the foods you crave without feeling guilty. Just eat them less often and in moderation, INSTEAD of frequently and until you are satisfied. Control portions and enjoy a small piece of chocolate instead of the whole bar.​

  4. Substitute the food you crave with a healthier version of the same food, in a sensible portion.

  5. Get absorbed in a non-food related activity you enjoy until the craving goes away. Cravings usually diminish over time.

  6. Cope with cravings that kick in at the same time every day. For instance a desire for chocolate after dinner, you need to have a strategy in place. You can either satisfy yourself with a healthier “dessert” or distract yourself with an activity you enjoy, such as watching television or going for a walk after dinner.

So remember, it is not about not being able to snack at all, but to do it in a manner you can control. After all, you decide what goes into your stomach and how much, and not your food!   

Need help adopting a better lifestyle? The SGH Obesity Centre (formerly known as LIFE Centre) has a multidisciplinary team of experts who can provide you with guidance on weight management, exercise and diet.

​​​See page ​1 to learn why we find it difficult to say 'no' to high-sugar and high-fat foods​.

Ref: S13

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