Tips for Curbing Junk Food Cravings

If you're over the age of 18 and still consider a bowl of sugary cereal with a root beer float chaser a solid meal, there's hope. It's never too late to get your taste buds back on track. They just need some reconditioning and discipline. According to Mareya Ibrahim, a chef, holistic nutrition coach and food expert, you can retrain your taste buds and rewire your brain to crave different foods and that’ll help you become a healthier eater.

It all starts with an eight-day training plan. Think of it like this - you wouldn’t expect someone who’s been a couch potato for the last decade to get up and start benching 200 pounds, it takes time to change a habit. And the same is true for your taste buds, but you can help kick-start the process in eight days. Some studies suggest it takes at least 10 times of trying a food to determine if we like it or not, so try to be open minded as you cut off trigger foods that tend to sabotage your taste buds and try to stop unhealthy cravings.

For eight days, eat at least five bites/sips of each of these ingredients daily:

  • Tomatoes
  • Mushrooms (other than white button)
  • Dark leafy greens (such as spinach, arugula and kale)
  • Celery
  • Avocado
  • Seaweed/sea vegetables

For Non-Vegetarians:

  • Pick at least two: natural lean pork, chicken, beef, turkey, bison, wild game or eggs.

For Seafood Eaters:

  • Pick at least two: wild-caught fish, shrimp, mackerel, tuna, anchovies or sardines.

For Vegetarians:

  • Pick at least one: quinoa, seaweed, pickled foods, tempeh, edamame or miso.

For eight days, cut out:

  • All sugar and sweets including maple syrup, agave and coconut sugar
  • All breads and bread products (bread, tortillas, pasta)
  • Dairy products made from cow’s milk
  • Processed foods (snack crackers, chips, bars, etc.)
  • Artificial sweeteners and colors
  • Alcohol
  • Soda and juice

Source: U.S. News

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