Sugar season is officially about to begin. With Halloween just a few days short days away, we're about to launch into the most sugar-saturated part of the year, a legacy that will carry us well into 2015.
You know the cycle- Halloween candy becomes Christmas candy becomes Valentines Day candy becomes Easter candy.
All before swimsuit season.
No wonder then this time of year that I hear increased concerns about managing sugary temptations in developing a healthy eating lifestyle. So how do you avoid the onslaught of the sweet stuff that comes barreling our way Halloween night? My suggestion in many cases is simply...
What?! Don't avoid eating candy? I'll admit, this tactic isn't for everyone (and you might need to chat with a doctor to see if that is or is not the case for you). But for the average healthy person who is working at eating nutritiously throughout the day, there are three main reasons why you don't need to be afraid of eating Halloween candy:
#1 Deprivation Doesn't Work
Studies have repeatedly shown that depriving yourself of certain foods can end up sabotaging your efforts to lose weight . The reason why? When you entirely eliminate something you really enjoy, you end up obsessing about it and looking for ways to be reunited. And you know what they say...
"Reunited and it feels so good..."
#2 Moderation Does
Rather than eliminating a favorite food, moderation can give you the opportunity to indulge without totally ruining your hard work. Just about every day, I look forward to having one small piece of "fun sized" candy after dinner. It totally helps me stay away from sweets during the day knowing I will get to have it later. Plus the small portion is not really going to impact my overall diet.
But remember- just a bite. You can have another one tomorrow.
And if you're still hungry, drink a glass of water and go eat some plain, air-popped popcorn.
#3 Supply Eliminates Surprise
Ever notice how just minutes after you put a watch on you don't notice it on your wrist anymore? The same just might be true of keeping sweets in your home. If you're able to master moderation as part of a balanced diet, the excitement of eating a piece of candy seems to diminish when it's there all the time. Tread cautiously here, not everyone is able to master this without the additional support of a physician or a nutrition coach.
What suggestions do you have for moderating temptations in your diet? I'd love to hear them- leave a comment below!