Many people who come and see me suffer from a sweet tooth. Generally just after eating, they feel the need for something sweet or at around 11 or 4 they feel a little low in energy and feel they need something sweet to lift them. This is often a result of an imbalance in their blood sugar levels and can be managed by balancing your blood sugar levels over the course of the day. So what does this mean?
Balancing your blood sugar levels during the day is simple. It means having regular meals and snacks. I find that 2-3 hours after a meal I naturally start getting hungry. This is the time that most people go for a quick fix to boost themselves up again – a quick coffee or tea, a scone or muffin or chocolate bar. However, these foods tend to be filled with sugar and so will only keep you satisfied for a very short period of time. Within an hour or so, you find yourself hungry again.
This becomes a cycle throughout the day, high after a sugary snack, low again quickly. This leads to imbalanced blood sugar levels throughout the day. The result of this type of lifestyle is generally weight gain (especially around the tummy area), low every levels, increased cravings and increased stress levels.
To break this pattern, we can start choosing snacks that are less sugary, and will therefore last us a little longer. Some fresh fruit and yogurt, some dried fruit and nuts/seeds, some wholegrain crackers with a dip.
Dark chocolate is also an option as a sweet bite after a meal – I tend to eat 1-2 squares of 70-80% dark chocolate. I’ve been looking at the Chocolate Trading Company recently and they have a great range.