15,000-19,999 SparkPoints 15,062

Beware the Addictive Cues: How to Fight Food Cravings

Thursday, March 28, 2013


I started my spark morning bleary eyed and with a cup of coffee. I saw this blog on addictive cues based on one of the best researchers in the field of addiction, Dr. Nora Volkow.

Working out three times a week, burning 1000 cals a week, has not budged the scale. I notice the changes in my body but not the scale. After three weeks, I began to review my daily trackers. I can see where my healthy exercise is NOT balancing my bad diet.

I've been focusing on this for the past few days and trying to understand it. This blog, "Beware the Addictive Cues: How to Fight Food Cravings" made tremendous sense to me. So much sense it was a duh! moment.

The trend is...on the days I work out, I go to the gym immediately after work. I plan breakfast, lunch, healthy protein snack with an apple before gym, then dinner around 7pm. BINGO! Hit the nutrition goals.

My days off at the gym I am less regulated. I tend to munch fruit/carrots at work then come home and chow, usually having strong cravings for dessert.
I've tried to break the dessert trend but could not figure it out for the life of me. This article made me realize dessert is a BIG deal around here.

It's a comfort for some family members, a treat for a day well done for others. For me, it is a cue that my family is happy when I drop a dessert on the table. Everyone's mood lightens. They are SO happy to have a treat because usually our pantry is filled only with staples for cooking/baking. Also, most night snacks are usually centered on relaxing with a book or movie or in the living room with my family. Gym night it is so late by the time we get home it's dinner, dishes, shower, and bedtime. It changes up the routine and my cues aren't activated.

My cue for craving in the evenings is rooted in family. No wonder it is so difficult to break the habit!

At least that is what I get from this reading...lol.

As a starting point for tweaking my new healthy lifestyle. My list:

emoticon I need to be diligent on meals and snacks 7 days of the week.
emoticon Focus on strength training and increasing cardio at the gym (it was already in my "goals" for this week).
emoticon Learn to enjoy family and family time WITHOUT it involving food.

What am I missing? Insight and input from others greatly appreciated.

Share This Post With Others
Member Comments About This Blog Post
    In addition to what Dawn said, if you did not want to reach out on spark, you could always use a personal journal!!! :)

    I think it is AWESOME that you are figuring out your own triggers and cues and working to overcome them!

    Woo HOO!
    1689 days ago
    Great blog! We talk about cues and triggers in addiction treatment a lot and there are a number of things that can trigger. Sensory cues like sight/sound/touch/taste/smell as well as emotional cues (bored/happy/sad) and even certain people/places can be triggers. Looks like you are on your way to identifying your own. It's a process and you won't figure it all out in one sitting. Keep working on it and I'm sure great things will happen!
    1693 days ago
  • PATTIE441
    Wow! What an awesome blog. I think you are doing a great job, and very inspirational. I don't know if you read this article, but I think this might help a bit. You are awesome! emoticon emoticon
    1695 days ago
    You're on the right track. As they say in the weight lifting community, you can't out-train a crappy diet.

    Exercise is great for developing fitness. But it doesn't burn as many calories as the tracker says it does, and it's very easy to eat more calories than the exercise burns.
    1695 days ago
    I think you on the right track. The only thing I would add would be reaching out to other sparkers when you find yourself craving something... Post to chatter box or blog or write to a spark friend. We are all here to support and help one another.
    1697 days ago
  • Add Your Comment to the Blog Post

    Log in to post a comment

    Disclaimer: Weight loss results will vary from person to person. No individual result should be seen as a typical result of following the SparkPeople program.

More Blogs by BUG1968