Trick or Treat! Overcome Sugar’s Sweet Cravings this Fall
As October falls upon us, we gear up for the most sugary time of the year. As the ghouls, ghosts and goblins start knocking at your door, stay mindful of the secret sugars haunting your fridge and pantry.
Even those of us who pride ourselves on having strong willpower, sugar is shockingly seductive and can spoil the healthiest lifestyle choices. It’s difficult to say “thanks but no thanks” when loved ones offer sugary treats, especially when treats are presented by adorable kids dressed as ghouls!
Sugar CAN be a monster, which is why we preach one word: moderation, moderation, moderation. (Yes, one word said three times.)
Cravings for sugar are a result of the stomach and spleen being out of balance. You know you’re eating too much sugar if you often feel tired, thirsty and anxious.
Here are some tips and tools to regain balance in your stomach and spleen and help you say “no thank you” the next time you’re feeling a sugary monster attack coming your way.
Eat to relax. Pumpkins, yams, sweet potatoes, long grain rice and oatmeal help stabilize your digestive system and make you feel good. This is the time of year when anxiety rises because of digestive imbalances. Healthy starchy carbs like yams and sweet potatoes help prepare your body for the changing seasons and upcoming stress of the holidays. The more you can neutralize your digestion now, the more you’ll be able balance stress with grace and ease.
Get plenty of sleep. Have you noticed that when you’re tired, you diet goes down the drain and you tend to eat junk at night? When you’re in a deep sleep your body is able to generate satiation hormones, which helps you know when to put the fork down and stop eating. Plus, when you get at least eight hours of sleep a night on a regular basis you loose inches off the waist line too. Yahoo! Getting rest energizes your metabolism so you burn fat faster while you’re awake and asleep. So get those zzzz!
Be mindful of spirits and grapes. Avoid drinking too much alcohol. Similarly to not sleeping enough, when you consume large amounts of alcohol you’re more likely to munch on sugary, unhealthy carb-heavy processed foods. (There’s a reason they serve nachos at bars!) Alcohol is considered a ghostly shadow of “empty calories” that add inches and extra pounds along with headaches and bad moods.
Don’t feed the bears. Do your very best to be discerning when it comes to high-stress environments and toxic people. Stress, especially unresolved drama and trauma, usually invites us to eat our feelings and reach for sweets to avoid bitter feelings. Remember, you can’t heal what you don’t feel. One of the biggest sources of fear-mongering and monster making these days? The news. Stay informed but resist being saturated in nightmare-making imagery and words.
Practice Qigong. A balanced spleen helps clear anxiety, nervousness and general stress. When both your spleen and stomach are balanced, the calmer your heart, mind and spirit. These three exercises banish hauntings caused by negativity, sugar cravings and bad moods.
Until next time be well and take care,
-Chris Shelton and the Shelton Qigong team.