Most of us love chocolate. Chocolate is sweet, delicious and decadent. But some people find that they can’t be trusted around chocolate – almost like you know that if someone leaves you unsupervised with your favourite, one or two squares end up as a whole family block gone. #guilty
There are different reasons why you can’t stop eating chocolate – some are physical, and some are more emotional or mental. Today, I’m going to take you through the 5 main reasons that people can’t stop eating chocolate, and what you can do about it.
You’re not eating enough low GI foods
Your body is good at telling you when it needs something to boost up your blood sugar levels. Unfortunately, it’s not that good at helping you choose healthy options!
If you are eating foods that are high in sugar and carbohydrates, the sugar will enter your bloodstream quickly. This gives you a quick energy boost, but then the body stores away the excess. This will lead to a drop in blood sugar, and your body will demand food again.
On the other hand, foods that are higher in fibre, protein and healthy fats will slow down the absorption of sugar, leading to steady energy over a longer period.
The easiest way to fix it? Switch your processed carbohydrate options for low GI options like wholegrains and root veggies to increase fibre and slow the absorption of sugars.
For bonus blood sugar balancing effects, make sure each meal you eat is balanced by including a serve of protein, healthy fats and fruit/vegetables along with your carbohydrates.
You’re craving minerals
If you’re crazy over dark chocolate, you might be low in some of the minerals found in cocoa. Dark chocolate is a good source of minerals including iron, magnesium, zinc and manganese.
Many people, particularly women, can become deficient in these vital nutrients. So your dark chocolate obsession might be your body’s way of correcting low levels of one or more minerals.
The easiest way to fix it? Start with a blood test to check for any deficiencies. Then up your intake of mineral-rich wholefoods, including vegetables, nuts, seeds, wholegrains, pseudograins like quinoa, eggs and high-quality meats.
You could also start adding pure cocoa or cacao to your smoothies and baking to give you a chocolate fix without the added sugars.
You’re moving towards pleasure
The unconscious mind is always focused on one of two things regarding your motivation – you’re either moving towards pleasure or away from pain.
Thanks to the compounds found in chocolate, it gives us pleasure. Often, we turn to chocolate as a form of pleasure because it’s the easiest option.
The easiest way to fix it? Find other ways to experience pleasure. Look for things that make you feel good – whether it’s lounging in a bubble bath with a book, going for a walk in a park or swimming in the ocean.
Make a point to include something each day you enjoy – even if it’s something as small as sipping a cup of tea or coffee before you start your day.
You’re moving away from pain
Many people take solace in chocolate and other comfort foods because they are avoiding dealing with painful emotions and experiences. Think about when you’re reaching for the chocolate – is it after a hard day of work? Or maybe when your kids are driving you insane?
Chocolate is delicious, but it’s not magical. It can’t erase feelings like loneliness and anxiety – it can only cover it up for a few minutes. If anything, it’s likely to heap guilt on top of those emotions and make the situation worse.
The easiest way to fix it? Try to pinpoint what it is you’re avoiding, and find a different way to deal with it. If you’re lonely, call a friend or have a cuddle with your pet. You could even look into volunteering if the loneliness is ongoing.
If you’re feeling anxious, focus on what you want, rather than on what could go wrong. Visualise yourself succeeding in that situation.
If it’s a build-up of stress, write down everything that is stressing you out on a piece of paper. This takes the stress out of your mind and gives you some perspective.
You’re focusing on what you don’t want
When you think to yourself ‘I shouldn’t eat chocolate, I shouldn’t eat chocolate, I shouldn’t eat chocolate’, what do you think your subconscious mind hears? ‘Chocolate, chocolate, chocolate!’ By focusing on not eating it, you’re actually making your brain think even more about chocolate. This can become a vicious cycle of deprivation followed by binge-eating.
The easiest way to fix it? Find a way to focus on what you do want instead. Focus on the delicious, nutritious foods you can enjoy every day.
Want to learn this and many more techniques to immediately shift your focus? Check out my new 6-week End Emotional Eating program by Clicking Here
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And remember: Health is not a size, it’s a feeling!