So, its THAT TIME again and every month the majority of women dread it. We all know the symptoms that come with it: feeling crabby, being bloated, tired, frustrated and craving everything in sight!! I talked about this with my mom one time, because she mentioned to me that she was eating everything she saw. Why is it that we get so insatiable?? The better question is...how can we control it?
I know that my cravings become ridiculous. I not only crave sweet, but I also crave salty and spicy! I feel like I completely lose control and all the hard work I had put in goes down the drain. I know keeping lots of veggies and fruits on hand will help, but what do you do when you don't want those things? Will forcing yourself to eat those things satisfy you? The answer is mostly likely not. So go ahead and take a little nibble of that chocolate. Now I said the word nibble not gobble. Do not take a whole tub of ice cream to the couch with a spoon and think that is going to be your nibble. If we can portion out our fruits and veggies, then why can't we portion out our cravings for extreme circumstances that happen to reoccur every month. Make little snack packs of the food you might crave later, but do not put it right in front of the fridge or cabinet in viewing sight. Hide it so that its there just in case you do need it.
I mean let's be realistic. When you have that craving, some water and veggies/fruits is not going to satisfy it; unless you get creative. I will take myself as an example. I love spicy and salty food more than I like sweets. During those times I crave spicy/salty food more than chocolate. What I do is have some watermelon, cucumbers, mangos, or any other fruit on hand that would taste good with some added spices. It is usually pre-cut in the fridge ready to go. Then I let myself indulge in fruit with some lime juice, a spritz of salt and lots of chili powder. It is soooooo yummy! This helps out my salty/spicy craving and a tad of the sweet side too. I do occasionally want a crunch with my spiciness so I buy crunchy fruits like jicama and cucumber. This fruit idea comes from an area where I lived when I was younger. There were street carts on the corners selling mixed fruits with lime juice, salt and chili powder. Of course you can pick and choose what you want on your fruit, but let me just tell you how yummy it is. This is how I trick myself into thinking I have given into the cravings; even though I know I'm still eating healthy.
As far as sweets go find some yummy recipes that are sweet, but still healthy. Make your own popsicles from blended fruit juices and add some tiny pieces of fruit; it'll be like having your own homemade sorbet. My co-worker use to make zucchini cookies and boy were they delicious. They tasted nothing like zucchini and just like a yummy cookie, but without all the extra fat. I need to find that recipe to make a batch and I will definitely post it when I find it.
Now on to something other than food, because it is starting to make me hungry. Keeping busy! This is a must in order to survive those couple of days. Don't get bored, because when you get bored you get those cravings calling your name even louder. Take a walk, go outside and relax in the sun (when its nice), read a book, clean your house...the possibilities are endless. Do not let your mind wander to food.
I know that those 3-5 days seem like they take forever, but by finding little things to trick yourself into thinking your giving in to the craving will help you survive. You know what, let me tell you a little secret. It's okay if you give in to the craving every once in awhile. You just start fresh the next day and don't beat yourself up about it. Let's face it we are not perfect and slipping up is okay. I've slipped up plenty of times and would beat myself up about it. This would cause me to just keeping slipping. My thinking was that if I already had messed up this much I had ruined everything so I might as well continue. Horrible thinking I know, but the only thing I can do is change that type of thinking. I promise to not beat myself up for little slip ups. Make a promise to yourself to do the same; at least for those 3-5 days.