Constant food cravings can wreak havoc with the best laid-out weight-loss plans.

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

  1. 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 rather than more often. 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. To 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.

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

​​​See previous page ​for reasons why we crave high-sugar and high-fat foods​.

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