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2/8/13 3:33 P

My current way to deal with cravings is to drink a cup of coffee. Dark roast. Nothing added. Usually decaf. Has a lot of flavor and takes a while to drink. By the time I am done, the craving has passed. Also it makes me stop and relax for a while.

MSCELIE365 SparkPoints: (1,392)
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2/8/13 3:02 P

Hershey's has suger free chocolate now in Walmart I know. It is about 160 Calories for 5 pieces, it tastes good not crazy after taste.

HCORNETTO SparkPoints: (18,404)
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2/8/13 2:31 P

I believe that some people can't just go without snacking, or "ignore" cravings by drinking water. It may work for some people, but others will keep eating other things to deal with the cravings until they get what they need. Rather than trying to ignore them, I'd recommend finding a healthier way to indulge your cravings.

Craving chocolate? Spread one tablespoon of Nutella on a rice cake or slice of whole wheat bread.

Pizza? Spread some tomato sauce, low fat mozzarella, and turkey pepperoni on an english muffin or mini bagel.

Ice Cream? Place a singe serve container of yogurt in the freezer, and eat that instead.

RMH0422 SparkPoints: (0)
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2/8/13 11:22 A

Have a craving for Ice cream treat here is a treat low cal. Make several a once to have around. Use 2 chocolate graham cracker squares with low fat cool whip in between. Put in freezer to get frozen. Whaa laa. A "ice cream sandwich"

GABBY98_80 SparkPoints: (37,938)
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2/8/13 9:04 A


2/7/13 2:59 P

It is the sweet tooth that gets to me everyday and especially for chocolate. Friends swear that my middle name is Chocolate!
Any ideas on acceptable chocolate snacks or is there such a thing?

DEBKING37 SparkPoints: (43,748)
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2/7/13 11:43 A

Lots of great ideas! I know I was not the originator of this post but I can definitely relate to it! emoticon

Fitness Minutes: (5,005)
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2/7/13 10:53 A

Funny you mention brushing your teeth. I don't tend to want to eat for at least a half hour after brushing my teeth. And by that time, i'm not interested in eating anymore. Also, if I use a teeth whitener strip, I won't touch food for a minimum of one hour so my teeth don't come in contact with any staining colorants.

BFEALLY Posts: 32
2/7/13 8:25 A

I noticed that the teeth brushing thing really works. When I have that clean feeling, it is nice and I don't feel like contaminating my mouth with food right away.

ZERO2HERO SparkPoints: (25,962)
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2/7/13 7:54 A

I apologize if this repetitive, but I find water and fruit to be great crave curbers. And as strange as it may sound, brushing my teeth. Nothing tastes great right after brushing your teeth and i enjoy the clean mouth feeling. It typically leads me to drinking water before I eat again, a palate cleanser if you will, and then I feel full enough that I don't enjoy the sugar.

I do however reserve space in my diet for one serving of coconut M&Ms about twice a week.

MARIEB65 SparkPoints: (625)
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2/7/13 7:15 A






Edited by: MARIEB65 at: 2/8/2013 (14:34)
VESUVIOUS SparkPoints: (27,345)
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Posts: 785
2/7/13 12:16 A

Make sure you are getting all your protein & water. Dried fruit has been good for me. It seems weird to count out 6 dates or 6 dried apricots and it doesn't satisfy like chocolate or ice cream but it helps. Don't keep the tempting foods in your house. When I am craving I look at the calorie count and rarely feels like a teeny, tiny serving of Haagen Daaz is worth the amount of time it would take to burn it off. Occasionally, like maybe 1 per month, I will have a treat......but I calorie bank for that week so it will even out (eat at lower end of range and exercise more) at the end of that week. The foods can't jump into my mouth....I have to choose to buy them and choose to eat them.

DEBRYLA13 Posts: 44
2/6/13 10:35 P

I have been talking about kicking the sugar habit for a year now. Sometimes I think that half my food in a day has some form of sugar in it rather it is natural or not. I almost always have a sweet snack in the afternoon around 4:00PM and than another one after dinner or around 8:00PM. I have been trying to make better choices on those snacks but I do really LOVE ice cream.

Some of my favorite low calorie snacks are:
Cinnamon rice cake with cinnamon or strawberry laughing cow cheese- less than 100 Cal
Bottle of water mixed with any flavor of Crystal Light- put in the freezer until slushy- under 50
Sugar free fudgesicles-Under 50 cal
Aussie Black Licorice- 140 calorie serving
Greek yogurt with Kashi granola- Under 200
Microwave Kettle Corn- under 150 cal

The Hungry Girl website has some really good ideas for low calorie treats.

Good Luck Everyone emoticon

RIET69 SparkPoints: (47,087)
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2/6/13 11:07 A

It is very hard to get past a craving. Water does not help me. Sometimes giving in leaves me satisfied for a long time.

MANDIETERRIER1 Posts: 17,521
2/6/13 11:02 A

I handle my cravings by telling myself nothing is completely off limits. I find a way to fit it into the plan or I tell myself I can have it tomorrow.

I don't do fake sugar. I hate stevia and the like. Diet food leaves me craving more, it is not satisfying. Fruit doesn't do the trick. So I eat the real thing, I just fit it into my calories.

When I tell myself I can have it tomorrow. Tomorrow usually never comes. The next day I don't want it as much as I thought I did.

Edited by: MANDIETERRIER1 at: 2/8/2013 (09:50)
2/6/13 10:46 A

i really struggle with an entire mouth full of sweet teeth! so i've learned to love tea with splenda, fruit greek yogurt, and i've learned how to make one of my favourite healthy sweet treats Lara bars. these have definitely helped me make better choices :)

DEBKING37 SparkPoints: (43,748)
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2/6/13 8:51 A

I began my diet on January 1, 2013 - again, emoticon and I had a lot of cravings, felt hungry at bedtime because I was used to eating cookies etc. Now when I am out of calories, I make a bowl of plain oatmeal with cinnamon and truvia if I want something sweet or nothing if I think I am still hungry but am out of calories. I have lost 7 pounds since I began and the cravings are getting less and less. I just remind myself how great I feel when I feed my body food instead of junk:)

MARBEALL SparkPoints: (94,324)
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2/5/13 4:36 P

@1Goodcook2- Thank you for your positive feed back and encouragement.

It's one day at a time for me right now. A single day is a mini-milestone accomplished and i am taking time from care taking others for some self care by self acknowledgement posting and sharing my journey. In three days it will be a week of no binging to achieve a medium intermediate milestone. Then I will count one day at a time for the second week. The third week something interesting is supposed to happen.

I read somehwere that it takes 21 days to establish a new habit. So my first major milestone is 17 days away. Then I will continue to plan and do meaningful and/or fun alternative activities to night binges (like going to see De Niro's new movie Silver LInings, practice dance, sort, throw out and organize clutter) for 30 days so I can celebrate my next milestone of a full month of not binging.

Well, that's my plan and I'm sticking to it! Thank you once again to responding 1Good cook2 and to others who may take time to read this post without responding. It's all good!

1GOODCOOK2 SparkPoints: (0)
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2/5/13 9:48 A

You really spoke to me in your response! Congrats for finding great solutions. I too have the evening craves - not necessarily for sweets - but just "something". I am trying to be conscious of what triggers them and counter-act, like you, by doing an activity. What I have found is by recognizing what is happening, and using some postive self-talk, helps me to not give in. Keep up the good work!

MARBEALL SparkPoints: (94,324)
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2/5/13 8:03 A

This is day 4 in a row without bingNg at night. i started planning ahead what i would do instead of my usual routine of watching tv on family room couch next to the kitchen. i drank water, chewed gum, went upstairs away from kitchen around 8pm to watch TV in bed, walked with a friend at the mall, did laundry, went to dance class with my husband. I feel good about my progress for 4 days in a row. It helps to plan what I will do instead of sitting near the tempting kitchen at night. Last night i split a porter house steak with hubby and filled other 2/3 of my plate with veges sauteed in olive oil. It was a big meal. After the meal my body wasn't hungry. but i stlll felt urge to eat. i had a tangerine. then i went out with hubby dancing. after dancing I actually watched my husband eat ice cream and potatoe chips and didn't feel like eating any. Wahoo!

BLUEJEANS27 Posts: 71
2/5/13 4:57 A

Brush your teeth right after dinner!! And I agree with the gum idea, plus I have some sour hard candies I suck on as well.

Also, I read something once that said, whatever you give your body regularly, it will begin to crave it. I used to have a 10pm ice cream habit. I would literally start to salivate at about 9:55. I started brushing my teeth at that time, and broke the habit.

I've also found that when I give my body HEALTHY things regularly, it begins to crave them. I eat salad nearly everyday now, and when I miss a couple of days, I am craving it.

Good luck, cravings are tough!

BFEALLY Posts: 32
2/5/13 12:32 A

I'll have up to seven small meals a day. If I starve myself I will pig out later and when my body thinks it is only going to be fed like once a day, it will start storing fat. emoticon

DOWNTOWNER17 SparkPoints: (367)
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2/4/13 9:59 P

I can't give in or I end up over-indulging. I try something else like water or a piece of gum!

EVERGLAD SparkPoints: (0)
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2/4/13 7:19 P

knowing that I am recording everything I put into my mouth makes me think twice about what I eat, which helps me curb those cravings. I'm visual so it helps me to see how much I consume on paper or the computer. I hope that helps others too!

2/4/13 6:41 P

The less sugar I eat, the fewer cravings I have, and not just for sweet things. A hard-boiled egg with mustard or a small bowl of greek yogurt with fruit or nuts usually tames the craving beast. Low-salt popcorn helps for those salty/crunchy needs. The best way I've found to curb the cravings though is just to not have any of those things in the house - it does make me crazy but it keeps me from eating them!

CAOUTCHOUC SparkPoints: (9,107)
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2/4/13 3:23 P

My biggest help in this regard has been to a) not limit myself super strictly, making cravings less onerous in the first place, and b) when they do rear their head, a cup of earl grey + 1% milk.

2/3/13 2:55 P

I try to have a glass of water and wait 15 minutes. Sometimes the craving will go away. Sugar free gum in interesting flavors also helps my cravings for sweets.

EGRAMMY Posts: 13,491
2/3/13 8:13 A

Have late afternoon or evening vespers

MOMMYOF2RN Posts: 579
2/3/13 12:35 A

I used to have late night cravings as well, but now that I drink plenty of water during the day I find I dont have that problem as often but when I do I grab a greek yougurt or something with plenty of protein to keep me satisfied

ANJUNA2 SparkPoints: (25,558)
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2/2/13 9:37 P

Well I am doing the Alternate Day Diet so cravings aren't a problem. If I want something I just say "OK you can have it tomorrow".

I have only been doing it for a week so far, but so far it is going well.

I do tend to eat a pretty healthy diet overall anyway, but it is mainly portion sizes that can be an issue for me.

SOFTLYROSE SparkPoints: (7,535)
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2/2/13 5:56 P

I usually find that if I most of my food during breakfast and lunch, I am significantly less hungry later in the day and I don't have as many cravings. I also fight sweet cravings by baking up almond flour treats. I can't really say how they compare to traditional sweets, but my friends love them, and they can eat wheat. I tend to incorporate one treat into my snack every day if I'm having a rough stretch with cravings, otherwise I freeze them and eat one when I really want a treat and it fits into my calories for the day.

I don't really tend to crave salty things, but I've heard kale chips are really good for them. You just spritz some kale with olive oil, sprinkle some salt on it and bake it in the oven for ten minutes. They taste similar to potato chips if you like that.

I hope that helps and good luck! emoticon

MEG-NATALIA07 Posts: 679
2/2/13 5:38 P

This helps me:
Getting at LEAST 60 plus grams of protein a day.
I eat a lot of fat. (Eggs, butter, coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil, pumpkin seeds...)
Focusing my meals around veggies and fruits--lots of fiber.

For cravings, I like:
- Homemade kettlecorn: a bag of microwave popcorn with NuStevia sprinkled on top. I swear it tastes just like the real thing! This is usually my night time treat almost every day.
- Lower calorie hot chocolate.
- A tablespoon or two of dark chocolate chips melted or softened in the microwave with a tsp. of real butter.
- Rice cakes with laughing cow cheese.
- Carrots with ranch.
- A single portion of a baked good (I make a batch and keep them in my freezer)

HAPPYMENOW58 Posts: 2,264
2/2/13 4:52 P

Sometimes just drinking 2 big glasses of ice water in a special glass will help! Again, visualize yourself floating on the water on a raft of success!!!!! You are floating toward a GREAT, Healthier YOU!!!! emoticon emoticon

NICKY51 SparkPoints: (31,578)
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2/2/13 11:02 A

i crave salty snacks though l try to keep salt to a minimum, when this happens l have a small handful of salted nuts or a small bag of baked crisps.

MARBEALL SparkPoints: (94,324)
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2/2/13 10:50 A

Thank you for sharing these suggestions. I am trying them today so I can get through day 2 of no food binging.

TOBIBURIE SparkPoints: (3,977)
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2/1/13 3:48 P

Susan- I am a chocolate craver too! Dark chocolate is one of my fixes but I have also discovered a decaf tea made by Stash that comes in a chocolate hazelnut flavor. It smells FANTASTIC and tastes pretty close to the real deal with a little Stevia and a splash of milk. This has helped me, hope it helps you too! Hang in there!

RUSSELL_40 Posts: 16,826
2/1/13 3:07 P

Cravings are the issue with every dieter. They eat well all day, but by nightfall are starving, or thinking of one food. Then they eat 4th meal, and the day is ruined.

Simple solution: don't eat, but how?

Your problem is that you need to eliminate your cravings, and most of them are carbohydrates. I started low carb almost 4 years ago, and it allowed me to control when I eat, and how much. I don't feel hungry when I stay on plan. I cut down to a very low level of carbs, and am slowly adding them back in. Some people have issues with a lot of types of carbs, others just have trouble with sugary ones. Those people can remove the foods that cause the cravings, and do fine eating the rest of the carbs in their diet. The problem is, most people have no idea how it feels to be without cravings. So, they may cut pop and ice cream, pizza, and noodles, and think they feel better, and may. They still are eating some foods that are an issue for them though. They lose a few pounds too, but never really get control.

Only by eliminating most of your carbs, will most people ever experience how this feels. No hunger, or cravings. Having to remember to eat.Through trial and error, you can add to your acceptable carbs list. Many people eat well over 100+ carbs , and do well. They know how being in control feels, and if they add a food, and it goes away, they stop eating that food, but most carbs are okay. The answer is to find out which ones aren't.

Control is what we really desire. Every dieter knows HOW to lose weight.. eat less. They don't know HOW to eat less though. When your body says it is hungry, or craving sugar/carbs of some sort, we will lose that battle. What we need to do is stop it from having those cravings/ hunger.

I am sure someone can point out something they eat that doesn't fit, but in my experience when people say they are craving fat, they usually mean carbohydrates/ sugar, like with ice cream. When they say they feel full because of all the protein they ate, it is usually because of the fat in that source of protein. I have tried eating lower fat foods with protein, and they don't work, because they usually have higher carbs too. Low carb, high fat seems to work best for me.

OLIVESGRANNIE SparkPoints: (334)
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2/1/13 2:31 P

Hi I'm a new Sparkler. I often get a craving for comfort food (cake and chocolate) in the evening. i plan in a night-time drink of low-cal hot chocolate. I really like Cadbury's Highlights and only 40 cals a mug. If i have enough calories left a crumpet with a teaspoon of low cal jam (no butter) is great.
Generally I have noticed that if i have protein for breakfast usually a boiled egg with half a slice of wholemeal toast I don't get the evening munchies.
Good luck ladies.
Cheers from Jacqui

JOYCEMOSER SparkPoints: (728)
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2/1/13 1:57 P

I have the same problem! Chocolate calls my name every day. I allow myself one or two Dove Dark Chocolates to take care of it, and of course I count the calories, etc. I also get salt cravings. Any lo-cal suggestions out there?

GRAMCRACKER46 Posts: 1,778
2/1/13 12:15 P

I agree with PATTISWIMMER to cut out sugars and high fructose. Read ingredients in any processed packed foods you get. It is shocking how much one get unknowingly get. Natural sugars in fruit is good in moderation.

After several months of eating without a lot of processed sugar I crave healthy foods. I never thought that was possible.

I like pizza too (who doesnt!) And eat that in moderation and in a healthier version if possible. Just some cheese often can help that savory/salt craving.

Good luck to you.

JOY136 SparkPoints: (29,586)
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2/1/13 10:03 A

My big craving is for ice cream at night. I nip that in the bud by pre-planning to save aside some of my calories, then having either 1/2 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt or nonfat ricotta cheese with a packet of sweetener and either a dash of flavoured extract (lemon, almond, mint, et al), sprinkle of instant espresso granules, 1-2 tsps mini choc chips or a tbsp of Polaner All Fruit stirred in. Not only is it a healthier choice than ice cream, it also boosts my calcium and protein, which seems to be lacking most days.

NYXWOLFWALKER SparkPoints: (168,070)
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Posts: 15,176
2/1/13 2:17 A

I don't wont to curb any of my cravings since they tell me what I'm missing in general

if i'm...

craving rice it means I've not been getting enough carbs so need to do so

craving miso soup equals not getting enough sodium

craving beef n broccoli equals needing more iron

craving chicken equals needing more protein

SUSANBEAMON Posts: 11,550
2/1/13 12:43 A

the only way i have of dealing with a craving, since my cravings usually are for chocolate, is to have a small amount of dark chocolate. nothing else will work. willpower is an illusion. it's like saying my hand doesn't hurt while i'm holding s hot plate. i can only conclude that anyone who says willpower works, has never had a real strong you can't think of anything else craving. sometimes i'm still hungry after a meal. that's not a craving, just an annoyance, that means i need some more protein, so i eat some nuts and i'm fine. but when chocolate craving hits, there are no substitutes available. it won't be distracted and it won't go away. the longest i've held out on it was a week. then i had a small bag of m&ms and it went away.

INNERBEAUTY78 Posts: 217
1/31/13 2:58 P

ELISEL89 - I have the same problem, so I totally sympathize. All this information from everyone is really helpful. Thank you.

1/31/13 1:05 P

You CAN overcome cravings. It's called will power; mind over matter. I agree with the other posts in that you should make sure you are hydrated, drinking plenty of water throughout the day (at least 1/2 your body weight in fl. oz. and your urine should be pale yellow to clear), AND including protein at every meal.

Not having those bad foods in the house is important. You should keep healthy snacks in the house, like fruit, nuts, and dark chocolate. I think it's ok to indulge in things once in awhile (like 2-3 times a month), as long as you do so in moderation -- for example eat 1 slice of veggie pizza or 1/2 cup of light ice cream. But again, don't keep the stuff in the house!

Hunger in the evenings is usually due to 2 problems: 1) you're not eating enough during the day, and 2) you're staying up too late and not getting enough sleep. When you don't eat enough during the day, say you skip lunch, your body will try to overcompensate for that later and you come home ready to eat a horse! Also, if you don't get 7-8 hours of sleep a night and stay up longer than you should, your body starts tapping into reserved energy and will get hungry again naturally. It's best to get enough sleep every night, it's been clinically shown to promote weight loss!

Have you heard of the 8-hour diet? Or 12/12 fasting? The concept of partial fasting, that is, only eating for a certain number of hours in your day, is where you allow your body enough time to fast (not eating) in which it will properly digest all the food you've consumed that day, and then will continue to break down cholesterols and fats in your body. Personally, I try for 8 hours of sleep every night and stop eating about 3-4 hours before bed.

Another great food to try: chia seeds. Mix with liquid and let sit 10 minutes to create a "gel", then ingest. They will not only keep you full, but offer many other health benefits including toxin removal from your bowels. Try eating these as your last food item of the day, and it should hold you over until bedtime.

JTANDLM98 Posts: 345
1/31/13 12:36 P

I have done a couple of different things to manage my cravings. I have found that if I completely deny myself, then usually I will binge on a huge bowl of ice cream (sweet) or McD drive through french fries (salty). To be more healthy about it, I try to eat within my calorie range throughout the day. Usually at the end of the day I am 100-200 under (even from the low end of my calorie range. So if I am craving salty, I reach for a healty salt alternative, like one serving of mixed nuts. If I am craving something sweet, I reach for one serving of craisins mixed with golden raisins. I know it sounds funny but I don't care for regular raisins, but the mixture of craisins with the golden craisins is the perfect balance of sweet and tart, for me anyway. Its like candy for me! If I am craving chocolate I reach for a FF chocolate pudding (60 calories) SF fudgsicle (70 calories) or a homemade mock ice cream sandwich. These are made with two chocolate graham crackers with light cool whip in between. They taste truly induldgent! (My kids even love them). If I don't have any calories at the end of the day, I have flavored herbal tea (blueberry is yummy). Or there are tons of yummy flavors of sugar free gum that become my "dessert". Sorry for the long email but I hope this helps you stay on track!

LYNNLY76 SparkPoints: (525)
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Posts: 11
1/31/13 12:11 P

I love sour cream and bacon chips! How do I curb THAT craving? I can eat a big bag easily

1/31/13 11:57 A

You need to cut out sugar and fructose to get rid of cravings and most processed food.

SAILOR64 SparkPoints: (20,017)
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Posts: 519
1/31/13 9:26 A


I used to have cravings like you, especially in the evenings. I discovered it's because I wasn't eating right during the day. I used to crave a bowl of icecream with chocolate sauce almost every evening, but once I started balancing my meals my cravings just disappeared.

I would suggest this...

1. Make sure you are well hydrated. Often, when we work late we forget to continue drinking water and often mistake thirst for hunger. Try taking a drink of water first, then decide if you are still hungry.

2. Keep fruit handy. When I know I'm going to be working late I bring an extra apple with me to the office.

3. Make sure you are getting enough protein with your evening meal. If I keep this single nutrient in balance throughout the day, I rarely have cravings in the evening.

Just a few thoughts. Good luck.

ELISEL89 SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 1
1/31/13 8:33 A

Cravings seem to be my downfall. I will be doing well and staying on track with calories and exercise, but then I either have a craving for a specific unhealthy food (usually pizza, ice cream, or chocolate) or at a specific time of day (i.e. late at night, especially on nights that I work late). I can't seem to overcome these cravings, and am seeking tips and advice on how to attempt to stay on track despite them. Thank you!

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