Eating healthy when one has an abundance of hungry little yeast organisms stimulating carbohydrate cravings (they really do do this), is a matter of self regulation and self love. As the urge arises to eat something that we know is contrary to our health goals, we make a decision in that moment. We must decide between the unhealthy food we are craving, and the healthier choice or abstinence. We must ask ourselves, if the taste of the food is worth the two minutes of bliss from indulging in a craving?
By choosing not to weaken our resolve, our self confidence or our body and mind by giving in, we have more strength with which to turn towards the increased fun we will by making self-loving choices.
Mind your own wisdom
Cravings for unhealthy foods represent a significant challenge to our healthy path when we get together with family and friends. When our new food habits are scrutinized by others, it can be difficult to know how to respond to questions. Without trying to change others around you, I encourage you to find your own tactful strength and to focus inwardly on your knowledge about which foods will maximize the quality of your time with your loved ones. Rather than explain to others why other foods are not healthy, we can turn inward and tell ourselves silently, that those foods are "not for me, not right now".
Redefine "Fun Food"
The satisfaction that comes of indulgence is so very temporary and it will return after you indulge. I encourage you to feed your own conviction about the potential of health and happiness through food therapy. And I encourage you to try to redefine "Fun food and happy food." Rather than the sugary, starchy foods that leave us feeling lethargic or worse - we can define fun food as the food that is yummy AND makes us feel amazing and energized.
Eating the healthy food is an advantage
Eating healthy is an advantage, not a deprivation. It is a way to balance emotional health, physical health and weight. It is also sparing us from the pollution of chemical and artificial food ingredients. Rather than resent the change, embrace it.
Cultivating calm, accepting thoughts
The way that we think (about food and everything else), is as important as the food we eat. It is, essentially, "our thought diet." and it affects our health profoundly. Some thoughts can help us relish the healthy path. Some can trigger an interior rebellion in ourselves. Holding our cravings with compassion and acceptance, can help prevent an inner struggle that might lead to binging.
Nothing tastes as good as health feels
To help with making the best choices, I like the phrase, "Nothing tastes as good as health feels." Over time, as our taste buds recover from the over-stimulation of sugar and starch and msg. We discover that the candy bar doesn't really even truly taste good- it just gives us that sugar buzz that, shortly after, makes us feel like crap. We learn to celebrate true food quality and we realize that nutrient-rich nourishment can taste as good as it feels. Be patient though because it takes a bit of time for our bodies to catch up with our wise thoughts.
Craving or addiction?
Allergy and addiction often go hand in hand when it comes to eating problems and the chemistry of this problem is not adequately understood by most professionals. I see it as unwise to encourage people to use moderation or to eat "just a little "treat'", because for those who have allergic or addictive responses to some foods, these foods are not a treat, but harmful.
What does it mean to be kind to ourselves?
Although well meaning friends and therapists often encourage us to be 'kind' to ourselves by 'having a little treat' and by not making so many 'eating rules', sometimes this can do more harm than good because in some cases there are more than just emotional issues at play. But no matter what our choices it is important to adapt a loving relationship with ourselves and our eating habits. I prefer to cultivate calm equanimity in response to the sensations of cravings and learn to allow the sensations to exist without acting on them.
Momentary pleasure or well being?
Self education and the practice of keeping a food diary can help you find the best way to eat satisfying foods and resist the temptation to choose taste over well-being.
If you do occasionally give in to your cravings, it's important to be ok with this, enjoy it thoroughly and mindfully and without regret and and accept any consequences with awareness. An accepting attitude will reduce the inclination to go overboard and binge out of a sense of frustration.
Transformation of habit
The ways that we indulge in pleasure are habitual. As we transform our lives we find more and more options for delicious indulgences of a different kind. The idea of what constitutes indulgence will change. Your highest ideal in your food choices may even come to include a sense of just ecological conscience and compassion for those who grow and prepare the food you eat.