Can You Really Experience Chocolate Withdrawal?

Posted 10/08/2014 | By HealthCorps

You decide to start a new diet and you make the decision to completely cut your regular habit of dark chocolate, even though it’s considered one of the healthier treat choices. Believe it or not, that decision may actually make it harder to resist high-calorie foods in general.

A recent study by Jens Blechert, an Associate Professor of Psychology at University of Saltzburg, involved 28 women who regularly consumed chocolate. They were asked by the researcher to abstain from eating the chocolate for seven days. During that period they reported “very strong cravings for chocolate.” Once the week was over and they were allowed access to the chocolate, researchers noticed that the participants consumed larger portions compared to the period before the week of restrictions. Seeing pictures of other tempting foods like waffles, chips, also seemed to instigate stronger cravings after the seven day abstention period.

The researcher concluded that even if only one treat item (that you really enjoy) is banned from your new diet program, it can instigate overwhelming cravings, a binge, or just be your diet undoing. Most nutritionists recommend reducing the frequency and portion size of snacks you love, rather than cutting them out completely. Certainly choose quality treats like small portions of very dark chocolate.

Quick water tip: Our brains seem to instinctively know how much water to drink post exercise. Drinking beyond the point of feeling refreshed and rehydrated, may not have added benefits, and may actually be perceived by your brain as unpleasant. You can weigh yourself before and after exercise and replace the water you sweat off, using the weight loss measurement as a guide for hydration.

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