Do you also crave sweets after dinner? You are not the only one! For some it’s more a habit, others enjoy desserts during festivities. However, when you try to watch your diet and don’t want to consume to much sugar it might be smart to skip those post dinner sweets.
why do i crave?
Although there is not much scientific literature about this ‘specific’ craving, I came across a few possible explanations. On one hand the need for sweet is a physiological consequence: The so-called Thermal Effect of Food (TEF). Simply said it costs energy first to thereafter gain energy from the food you ate. It sounds comprehensible that after the consumption of a large meal the need for sweets and desserts increases. These are often easy absorbable carbs that can contribute quickly to digestion.
In addition, there are a few psychological factors that play a role. It can simply be a habit to eat something sugary after dinner. In general, sugar increases your serotonin level, which makes you feel happier. Or maybe when you were younger, you were promised some ice cream under the condition that you finished your plate. This rewarding feeling could unconsciously still be present.
how do I break the habit?
For starters it might be wise to check with yourself what kind of mechanism is going on. Is your need for sweet more a craving or a habit? Does it occur in specific situations? (in company or alone) and so on. Then try to make a plan on how you want to break that routine, go for a walk for example, this also favors your digestion!
Another thing you can do to contain your sugar crush is the (might be cliché) 20-minute rule. Try to wait at least 20 minutes after your meal, this gives complex carbohydrates the time to convert into energy which subsequently can be used for your digestion. Chances are that your craving has decreased or even vanished.
Finally, a tip for the real sweet tooths among us. Quit your appetite with a small piece of dark chocolate (+75% cacao)
Enjoy your day!