5 Ways to Obliterate Sweet Cravings — Without Sugar
For most of us, a typical sweet craving hits like a hurricane and fills our brain with visions of mounds of cupcakes, gleaming towers of doughnuts, and infinite bowls of blood-red Swedish Fish itching to swim straight down our gullet.
READ: 5 Ways to Kick Your Sugar Addiction for Good
Small problem with that, which you almost certainly already know: It’s been proven time and time again that the human body wasn’t made to withstand the amounts of sugar we’re collectively consuming, and it’s having disastrous effects on our health, including raising our risk for diabetes and heart disease, and cancer.
In fact, Robert Lustig, a leading U.S. obesity expert believes sugar is an addictive toxin and should be regulated in the same way as cigarettes.
Still, that doesn’t mean we don’t crave the stuff — we sure do — but it does mean we should think twice before sidling up to the vending machine every day at 3 p.m., or high-tailing it to Starbucks for a Venti Caramel Frappucino.
READ: Can You Really Be Addicted to Oreos?
There are plenty ways to indulge your sweet tooth without turning to junk food, whose ingredients are downright frightening. For the record, a pack of Swedish fish is made with the following: sugar, invert sugar, corn syrup, modified corn starch, citric acid, white mineral oil and artificial flavors, as well as FD&C Red 40 for the red color.
Read on for 5 perfect ways to get a sweet fix — without sacrificing your health:
Iced Green Tea With Soy Milk
We swear: This slightly creamy drink will quell any sweet cravings like a pro. It’s super-economical — a jug of unsweetened iced green tea costs around $4, while a container of soy milk costs about $3 — and it’s amazingly satisfying when served over ice.
On the go? Here’s a little tip: Pop into Starbucks and order an unsweetened iced green tea shaken with a little soy milk. It’s better than any Frappucino, and it's got none of the added sugar, fat and other junk you’ll find in drinks like that.
Sure, you can freeze your own, but pre-cut bags of frozen fruit are an unbelievably convenient way to satisfy a sugar craving without any refined sugar or nasty preservatives. Frozen cherries, especially, are super-sweet, while mango and papaya taste like you’re eating sorbet. Just be aware of how much you eat — there’s no added sugar, but natural sugars are still present, so pay attention to serving size.
Frozen Fruit Pops
If you’re looking to get a little more involved, try making your own fruit pops. We’re loving one from Design Love Fest, which includes almond milk, OJ, oranges, strawberries and some optional vanilla protein powder! That’s it!
Pan-Seared Cinnamon Banana Slices
Hel-lo: Sliced bannans rolled in cinnamon and nutmeg, then cooked in a pan with a little olive oil for three minutes, make a fantastic treat. If you’re not opposed, add some Splenda or granulated Stevia for an extra sweet kick. This also makes a seriously impressive dessert for company.
Super-gourmet and super-healthy, this treat involves broiling a grapefruit with rum, cinnamon, cayenne, cherries, and a touch of brown sugar (which of course is optional). Check out the recipe at Saveur!