I don’t have much of a sweet tooth, but I have friends and family members who — no joke — order a slice of cake as an appetizer at dinner. There are those of us who just need that fix. If this describes you, it might be time to finally take control of your cravings (rather than letting them control you.) Next time you get a hankering for a donut, why not try one of these seven healthier alternatives?
1. Eat a Piece of Chocolate
Sure, eating chocolate seems like an obvious way to satisfy a sugar craving, but research continues to tell us that in small doses, cocoa consumption can have positive impacts on your heart. The key is opting for dark chocolate that is at least 70% cacao, and limiting yourself to one or two small pieces per serving.
2. Drink Water
Did you know that dehydration is a common cause of sugar cravings? John Higgins, MD explains that “When you’re dehydrated, it can be difficult for organs like the liver, which uses water, to release glycogen [stored glucose] and other components of your energy stores, so you can actually get cravings for sweets.”
3. Snack on Fresh Fruit
Nothing hits the spot like the sugars found in natures candy — fresh fruit. Next time you’re craving something sweet, pick out something seasonal. You’ll be amazed at how well it hits the spot, without leaving you with that icky why-did-I-just-eat-that-cakepop feeling afterwards.
4. Brush Your Teeth
How unappetizing does any food sound immediately after brushing your teeth? There’s no better way to curb a craving than by filling your mouth with that clean, minty fresh feeling.
5. Freeze Your Grapes
There are approximately 62 calories in a cup of grapes — that’s a win! Wanna make this sweet snack really go the distance? Freeze those bursting-with-flavor babies for 4-5 hours, and voila!
6. Sample Some Ice Cream
That craving for ice cream is REAL. Next time you feel yours coming on, instead of suppressing it, honor it. The best life hack ever — go to an ice cream shop, sample a few of your favorite flavors, and call it a day. It’s amazing what a few bites can do to cure a craving, and hey, that’s what samples are for!
7. Eat a Dried Date
Dried dates are one of nature’s best sweeteners when it comes to baking. So you can bet that they’re super effective when it comes to satisfying your sweet tooth in a healthy way.