11 Ways to Tame Your Sweet Tooth
While it’s okay to indulge in a sugary treat every now and then—even with diabetes—you don’t want to overdo it. Here’s how to keep cravings at bay.
- Have fruit handy. When you’re in the mood for something sweet, a serving of fruit can do the trick. Keep low-sugar, diabetes-friendly fruit, such as strawberries, blackberries and blueberries, in the house. But avoid high-sugar fruit snacks, such as fruit leather or juices (in particular, avoid ones that say “juice cocktail” on the label).
- Set rules you can live with. For example, you can have dessert only one day a week or no ice cream allowed in the house. Or give yourself a “sugar quota,” where you allow yourself a set amount of sweets each day. (Talk with your healthcare provider about an appropriate amount.) Knowing you will be able to have some sugar takes off the pressure while giving you something to look forward to.
- Chew gum. Sugarless, of course! Research shows that chewing a stick of this candy can curb sugar cravings and make you less likely to snack.
- Work on your pearly whites. That’s right—brush your teeth! The flavor of toothpaste can quell your cravings for sugar. Just think how bad something sweet will taste when combined with the lingering toothpaste flavor.
- Give in—if you must. If you’re craving something sweet, wait it out for 15 to 20 minutes. If you still want it, indulge in a small amount of your desired food. Tip: If you have a hankering for chocolate, freeze a bar of dark (which has heart-healthy benefits): It will harden the chocolate, making it last longer in your mouth, so you won’t eat as much!