Satisfy your cravings the healthy way

You are sitting on the couch watching Regina George eat fattening granola bars for the thousandth time (you can never watch Mean Girls too many times) when suddenly, the craving for your favorite snack strikes. Whether it’s potato chips, an ice cream sundae, or McDonald’s French fries, you have got it bad. And the worst part? The cravings usually are not even in the realm of foods you should be eating. So what do you do? Sit and suffer? Wrong! Here is a list of some popular cravings and the healthy way to alleviate them.

Chips

Chips are a classic, and an easy fall back when you crave something salty. The problem is, they are fried and tend to have artificial flavors. When you are at the grocery store, try to find chips that are baked and that are low in fat AND sodium. People tend to look at calories, but the truth is that high amounts of sodium can also be dangerous. For people that are not picky, pretzels can be a slightly healthier alternative to chips.

French fries

Nothing quite compares to biting into a soft, salty potato that has been deep fried in oil. While I will not deny that the taste is good, the effects are not worth it, especially if you crave them often. The healthier alternative is much easier than people think. If you cut up a potato into long thin slices, leave them in water for a few minutes, put them on a baking tray and pour some vegetable oil and garlic salt, then stick them in the oven, you will have a much healthier and equally tasty plate of fries on your lap ready for snacking.

Ice cream

This is my personal favorite. If I could eat ice cream everyday and never gain an ounce, I would. Unfortunately this is not the case. Most ice cream has artificial flavors and milk from cows that have been given extra hormones (yuck). Luckily, there are alternatives. The easiest way is simply to check the labels and make sure that these are absent from the ice cream. However it is still more fattening than some other options. Frozen yogurt, the latest craze, has become popular with good reason. It is much better for you than ice cream and tastes just as delicious. Home-made ice cream is the best option, and there are all kinds of recipes for your favorite flavors.

In the end, it is important to remember that while these are the healthy options for your cravings, you still should not over-indulge. It is not a free pass to eat as much as you want. But cutting out the foods that we love from our diets makes eating depressing, and it never should be. Food should be enjoyable. So instead of telling our bodies that they must suffer in silence we can give them a good-tasting but better snack that fills us. All these options and more are available if you just look for them.

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