Losing It! Ways to Overcome Cravings

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Published 1-3-08

“Dear Pharmacist,

Since my son left for college, I have developed the most insatiable cravings for sweets. It’s so bad that I have to eat candy bars every day and I’ve put on 20 pounds in two months. I’m very embarrassed but I don’t know how to stop myself.”
–LA Winter Park, Florida

Answer: Distracting yourself with food isn’t the answer. Stressful times call for sensible action and fattening up is not sensible because it leads to heart disease, diabetes and stroke. Your body will slowly fall apart. Is that the example you want to set for your son? You are going to have to beat the cravings for sweets (and food in general) along with millions of other folks who have “lose the weight” on their New Year’s resolution list.

Please make a serious commitment, start sweating and throw out processed meals that are laden with artificial ingredients and refined sugar. It is important to have the support of other family members. More specifically, ask them to stop bringing home bagfuls of junk food that could sabotage you. There are some dietary supplements that can help too. Consider these:

Guggul- This is also called “guggulipid” and comes from the gum resin of the guggul tree, native to India and Pakistan. The herb is commonly used in Ayurvedic medicine and it boosts production of thyroid hormone. This helps you burn fat, boost mood, increase energy and normalize cholesterol ratios.

Hoodia- This is a natural appetite suppressant which comes from a South African cactus. It won’t speed your heart or give you the jitters, it just makes you feel full. The idea is to eat less. Make sure the brand you pick is 100 percent certified.

5-HTP (5-hydroxytryptophan)- This is a precursor to serotonin in your body, which is one of your happy brain chemicals. 5-HTP helps turn off your carb craver while stabilizing mood. It works almost immediately, within days. Because the substance later converts to melatonin, it also deepens sleep for many people.

Omega 3 fatty acids- Fish oils are rich in omega-3s -and they speed up the rate at which you burn fat.  Fish oils provide ‘essential fatty acids’ but I promise you these are good fats, and good fats never land on your thighs.  Good fats actually help you digest and get rid of bad fats.

Chromium- This mineral helps you balance blood sugar. If you crave sweets, you may have insulin resistance and a higher risk for diabetes. Chromium, and other minerals, are necessary for a person to overcome blood sugar imbalances which lead to cravings.

Did You Know?
Digestive enzymes can help you break down your meals and increase weight loss.