How often do you decide that you are going to go stop eating junk food? If I am to be completely honest, ‘strict-no-junk-food’ diets usually don’t last too long. But I have found some great ways that have helped me kill the cravings, and I hope they will help you too:

• Set goals: It’s important to set goals, for almost everything in life but its more important to set realistic ones. Not outrageous ones like “I’m’ NEVER going to eat pizza again!". I have found setting goals with shorter timelines is the key. Like “I’m not going to touch a cake or fries at the party today. Taking smaller steps has helped me make longer term changes.

• If your goals involve a specific occasion – like a birthday or wedding - then every time you reach for something unhealthy, visualize yourself as fitter and leaner. Now drop that cookie and walk slowly away from it. You're welcome.

• Don’t buy junk food: Now many of us live with our families, so we can’t always control what food is in the house. That’s why it is important to make ‘no junk food’ a movement at home. Involve the family or at least sibling. Initiate healthy eating; then you have each other for motivation as well.

• Upset about a break up? A bad day at work? Don’t run to the fridge, simply call a friend and vent.

• Indulge once in a while: Don’t be too strict on yourself, if you’ve been good throughout the week, treat yourself once in a while. Nothing huge, but something big enough to keep the cravings at bay.

• Go brush your teeth: Sounds silly I know, but this actually works! If you’re craving something unhealthy, brush your teeth or gargle with some minty mouthwash, or chew on some sugar free mint gum.

• Distract yourself: Cravings last anywhere from 5-20 minutes, so get involved in some activity. Listen to your favourite music, strike up a conversation with a friend or workmate, do some chores or go for a run. Anything to get your mind off the craving. After 20 minutes, you may find that you probably don’t want the junk food anymore.

• Change your attitude: One of the most important things is your attitude. Don't sulk because everyone else is having cake and you can't. If that “I CAN’T eat cake” attitude changed to “I DON’T eat cake”, you may find that your authoritative tone makes all the difference to how you feel.

Just remember, that food cravings are just an urge that can be overcome. Once you’ve conquered your mind, then the saying no to junk food should be simple. Image Courtesy: Glow Images

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