Eating Popcorn is Like Overdosing on Sugar! A Cravings-Crushing Monday Feature
What’s one of the first things you do upon arriving in a movie theater? When accosted by the tantalizing sights, sounds and smells of movie popcorn, many buy a bucket of the stuff.
Nearly four years ago — while reeling after the death of my mother, her inadvertent abuse of me and my resulting PTSD — I found it tough to pass up on movie popcorn.
Never before has popcorn held such massive, overpowering allure to me. For months after Mom died, I was trapped in a huge movie popcorn-eating cycle. Usually, I didn’t even care (or notice) that the popcorn didn’t taste that great.
I just couldn’t get enough of the fiber-stripped, nutrient-lacking carbs.
Within a few months, my popcorn bingeing, along with other “carb sinning,” made me gain 21 unwanted pounds, as well as often feel anxious, confused, sluggish, depressed, and overly emotional.
Sure, I wasn’t eating sugar, but of course, I was lying to myself. Worse still, I was in major sugar denial. After all, Popcorn = Fast Carbs = Sugar.
You know how absolutely awful it feels to be in the stranglehold of an overpowering craving to eat—or, rather scarf— a certain bad-for-you nonfood?
Do you often feel like a hamster trapped on a spinning wheel—and against your will, you’re driven this urgent, burning, panicky need to shovel that edible junk food into your mouth now?
And do you find that you can’t stop thinking or fantasizing about your favorite donut, popcorn or [other trigger food]?
Even worse, do those junk foods keep calling out to you? (Or at least, that’s what it feels like.)
Do the enticing-looking, savory-smelling goodies seem to beckon you, pleading “E-a-t me, e-a-t me?”
Throw stress into the mix, and you have a disastrous recipe for bingeing on unhealthy foods loaded with sugar, fat or salt.
Then, add your time of month or time of life, grief, challenges with your honey or mother, work woes or other compelling reasons, and danger is on the way.
In short, do you get “possessed”—or so it feels—by what I call Crazy Cravings™?
There’s no need for you to suffer anymore. I’m here to bring you help every week. Welcome to Cravings-Crushing Monday…
Crazy Cravings are the SINGLE Biggest Hurdle to Health & Weight-Loss Success
Why am I doing Cravings-Crushing Mondays?
Four years ago, when I was walloped by my own Crazy Cravings four years ago (after a particularly traumatic time), it hit me hard.
Crazy Cravings are the single biggest hurdle to weight-loss success.
Just ask anyone seeking to shed excess pounds and she or he will unleash a torrent of complaints about overpowering, can’t-ignore, cravings for fiber-stripped, sugary, fatty or salty snacks and “treats.”
Typically, the whine goes like this:
“I always promise myself to go on a diet, eating only healthy, slimming foods.
“I start out with a bang. I’ll be ‘good’ for a day, a week or even several months.
“Then, suddenly one day—usually when I pass a donut shop, fast-food joint or candy store and I’m dealing with stress, frustration or that time of month—one sight of the goodies in the shop window and a whiff of the sweet aroma sends me dashing inside.
“I then become `possessed’ by an urgent need for a sweet roll or [fill in the name of your biggest trigger food]. I feel that it’s calling out to me!
“Pretty soon, I’ll zone out, mindlessly polish off one, two, three or more of [put in your trigger food], and I just can’t stop. Within days, weeks or months, I’ve gained five, 20, 40 pounds.
“It’s awful. I feel so out of control. I hate being a slave to my Crazy Cravings!”
Darn—or, if you like it, add your preferred expletive here—those Crazy Cravings can derail the most well-intentioned of us.
When our sudden, unpredictable Crazy Cravings take hold of us, our best-planned diet intentions can quickly slide down a gutter as if they were misbehaving bowling balls.
But you don’t have to be at the mercy of your Crazy Cravings…
It’s time to take charge, and I’ll be here all year on Cravings-Crushing Mondays to give you fast, convenient information and tools to whip out at a moment’s notice in our fast, convenience-driven world.
What are Cravings-Crushing Mondays?
Since many people blow their diets over the weekend and plan to get back to healthy eating the first day of the week, I’m presenting Cravings Crushing Mondays.
Every week in 2016, you’ll get fast, convenient, science-backed tips, tools and pointers so you can easily eat clean despite our fast, convenience-driven culture.
Cravings-Crushing Monday (In Advance) Because of the Long July 4 Weekend
Independence Day in the United States is, of course, in the height of the picnic season. That means you’ll be offered and partake of a veritable feast of sugar-laden snacks and main courses — whether you know it or not.
If you suffer from sugar cravings — or even if you don’t — this holiday can be tricky, especially if you aren’t armed with the right information.
You don’t need to be a nutritionist to know that it’s best to avoid sugar-sweetened cookies, brownies or cake cake—no matter how patriotically you decorate them.
But the Sneakiest Sugars in Disguise often grace your picnic tables.
And you wonder why you get Crazy Cravings after your ostensibly healthy meal?
Here’s a list of some popular picnic favorites and better options, which will help you to get through the day (or any sugar-laden holiday) feeling good.
Remember, the American Heart Association recommends that you limit your daily intake of added sugars to no more than 6 teaspoons if you’re a woman, or 9 teaspoons if you’re a man. And, as I’ve shared, I always advise eating less.
So here are a few tips to avoid big picnic offenders, many of which aren’t even sweet. (more…)
A Cravings-Crushing Mondays™ Feature: Get the Shocking Sugar Truth!
You’re probably overdosing on some 60 to 90 teaspoons of Sneaky Hidden Sugars™—as I call them—at least 22 times a day.
Indeed, you may be dipping in and out of Sugar Shock for much of your day, and you may be unknowingly sabotaging your weight-loss efforts every single timeyou eat foods from cans, jars or packages. How can you be eating that much sugar?
Cravings-Crushing Monday™ Presents a Fast, Easy Tool
One of the tastiest ways to nix your sugar cravings is with a spice you probably have in your cupboard right now: Cinnamon.
You may know this culinary spice for the warm, aromatic flavor it gives baked goods.
Cinnamon, in my opinion, is one undervalued space.
Indeed, cinnamon has been treasured for more than 3,000 years for its medicinal properties.
For instance, cinnamon has been used to treat muscle spasms, vomiting, diarrhea, infections, the common cold, loss of appetite, erectile dysfunction and many other conditions. Pretty impressive for an ingredient derived from the bark of a small evergreen tree.
It’s Cravings-Crushing Monday, and today, I have a confession. Lately, I’ve become a big crier.
I’ve been that way for nearly four years since my mother died and all those tears began to turbo-charge my healing.
Until recently, I’ve been really embarrassed by all my sobbing in public.
Now. I’m rethinking my attitude. Why should I — or you — be embarrassed if we cry in front of other people?
After all: Crying, the research shows, is good for you.
For my part, recently, it’s been impossible for me to turn off the waterworks or anticipate when my tears would flow. For instance:
After Mom passed away, I cried during high-intensity Zumba or spinning classes at the gym, while watching a film with a loving mother and daughter and a myriad of other reasons such as anger, grief, blame, shame, depression, shock and those nagging what ifs.
The floodgates also opened perhaps hundreds? of times while I wrote and edited the introduction to my next book, Crush Your Cravings and admitted to my own Crazy Cravings after the death of my mother.
Two weeks ago, while going indoor skydiving as a group breakthrough activity with our coach, the heart-centered entrepreneur Lisa Sasevich, tears again came out of nowhere. As before, I quickly sought refuge in the bathroom so I could weep alone.
Have you ever watched a magician perform a trick in which your attention was distracted long enough for you to be completely fooled by what that person is doing?
You can easily perform a similar sleight of hand to diminish or ditch your food cravings. And like other Cravings-Crushers I share, this is simple, but powerful.
Although I’ve been recommending distraction as an easy, effective Cravings-Crushing technique for years, there’s now legitimate research, which validates this simple tool. What’s especially wonderful is that even people, who are highly sensitive to visual cues can use this fast method.
Nowadays, it’s easier than ever to distract yourself, given the proliferation of transportable video games and phone apps such as Angry Birds and Subway Surfers.
Although I like to call this technique “Distract Away Your Cravings,” psychologists and brain researchers use the fancy phrase, “mental resource blocking.” Now, learn more about these fascinating findings.
The Science: In two separate studies done in Holland, brain researchers at the Leiden University Institute for Brain and Cognition tested two large groups of people to determine their sensitivity to food cues and the intensity of the cravings these cues triggered. Then the scientists tested the study participants after they distracted themselves from their food cravings by solving a puzzle. (more…)
This year, I finally remembered on the actual day. Today is my official Sugar-Free-iversary. In 1998 — that’s eighteen years ago — I said bye-bye to sugar on doctor’s orders.
As I think about my 18 years of being mostly sugar-free, here are some lessons I’ve learned.
1) Being a Sugar and Carb Addict was a Big Blessing.
It’s taken me a while to reach this conclusion, but if I’d never hit rock bottom as a sugar addict, I never would have discovered the joy, peace and calm that I now derive from treating my body with the respect, love, and appreciation it deserves.
In short, because I once treated my poor body so badly and mindlessly, quickly shoved processed carb crap into my mouth, I now relish putting nourishing foods into it.
2) It’s Horrible to Feel Like a Sugar Slave!
Being addicted to sugar is one of the most awful feelings imaginable. I never ever want to go back there again. That thought has helped to keep me on the sweet sugar-free path.
If I gave into sugar, I would feel powerless, trapped, and disappointed with myself.
And I’d feel much like Cartoon Connie above. Crazy Cravings for junk food galore would be hounding and haunting me all the time. But, thankfully, no more.
Whenever I’ve been tempted–which just doesn’t happen much anymore, I remember that Sweet Freedom is super delicious.
3) To Strive for Perfection is Pointless. But 90 Percent is Possible.