Situation: You’ve just walked in the door after a long, stressful day of work. It’s late, you have nothing prepared for dinner, and you’re too exhausted to chop, peel and cook the vegetables in your fridge. You take a look and, BAM, what speaks to you instead? Chocolate chip cookie dough? Leftovers from a recent late night order from the Chinese restaurant down the street?

Sound familiar? We’ve all been there, I promise.

A deeper delve into this topic leads us to a related question, what do you crave that’s not food?

Sometimes cravings are caused by things we feel are missing from our lives and food fills this void. We may be conscious of the void, or maybe not. Stress, feeling bored or being lonely can be behind this feeling. One of the hardest things to do is getting in touch with what we crave that’s not food and learning how to nourish those parts of our lives.

When you feel cravings coming on be real with yourself. Is it food you want or something else? If you just ate a meal an hour ago, maybe hunger isn’t what’s going on. Boredom is a big trigger for cravings. The trick is to find other things to do that are fulfilling, meaningful, and take your mind off food.

What are some things you can do instead of focusing on food?

 Create your own list:

  • Take a walk
  • Get a manicure, pedicure, or massage
  • Enjoy a hot shower or relaxing bath
  • Spend time with friends
  • Practice yoga
  • Learn something new
  • Read a book
  • Garden
  • Paint
  • Put together a puzzle
  • Spend time doing something you love that has meaning for you

These are just a few ideas. Focus on doing things you enjoy and see what works for you. And when you reach for that late night snack, check in with yourself. Are you hungry? Or is snacking an easy distraction? Nourishment, after all, is about a whole lot more than food.

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