When Cravings Attack: A Worksheet

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

I had this SUPER strong craving for a piece of cafeteria pizza today, shortly after I'd finished the lunch I'd brought from home. It was almost all-consuming. It was like this giant neon flashing sign in my brain. A terrifyingly powerful siren song tempting me to my own death. Haha. I mean, I haven't banned pizza from my life entirely or anything, but I'm trying to commit to not eating when I'm not physically hungry, and I definitely wasn't hungry at the time because I'd just finished lunch.

Anyway, I staved it off by forcing myself to read a few SparkPeople articles, and going through some questions in my head about the craving, and that killed the time before my next meeting well enough. And by the time my meeting ended I'd forgotten all about it. So, crisis averted. Yay.

But it sucked at the time! And so, for next time, I came up with this worksheet that's pretty much the questions I asked myself in my head earlier, with a few more. Next time I get a crazy strong craving that's taking over my life, I'll force myself to write out the answers. Hopefully will start to see patterns emerging that I can then conquer. (For example... realized my breakfast and lunch today weren't high in protein, so maybe that's part of why I was jonesing for the pizza still. I'll try to be better about eating more protein early in the day and see if that helps.)

I won't fill it out all the time or anything... but hoping it will be a good tool to have in my toolkit next time I need it. So, here's the worksheet/questions:

When Craving Attack: A Worksheet

1) What am I craving right now?

2) What type of food is it? (e.g., sweet, salty, fatty, carb-y, protein, etc.)

3) How physically hungry am I right now? (on a scale of 1-10, with 10 being “so full I’m sick” and 5 being “neither hungry or not hungry”)

4) What time is it, and what’s going on in my head/heart/life? (i.e., stress? tired? feeling emotional, or not, about something?)

5) What else have I eaten today (and maybe yesterday if relevant)? Am I below targets on protein, salt, fat, etc...? How would eating this food impact the rest of my nutrition for the day?

6) How would I feel afterwards if I ate what I’m craving? Physically? Emotionally?

7) How would I feel afterwards if I _didn’t_ eat it? (e.g, deprived/sad, or proud of myself for resisting?)

8) Is it worth it? If so, eat it!

9) If it’s not worth it... what steps can I take instead to get my mind off the craving, and/or satisfy it in a healthier way, and/or treat the issues from #4 without food?

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • TINAJ15
    This is great. I often find myself dealing with similar issues. Sometimes it's even a matter of my brain saying 'that didn't feel like enough food' or 'that didn't look like enough food' and so I fight with myself about going to the kitchen for more! I'm definitely going to take note of this blog. Thanks! And great job fighting your craving!! emoticon
    1854 days ago
    1855 days ago
    Pretty good plan! Did you ever figure out what set of the pizza craving in the first place? Maybe the small? I'm crazy about pizza, but I almost never have to be in the same room with it, so I guess that helps.
    1855 days ago
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