#4: How To Stop The Afternoon Carb Cravings

I’m thrilled to introduce today’s guest, Cynthia Pasquella. I can’t say enough wonderful things about Cynthia. She played a big role in helping me launch The Balanced Life and I have HER to thank for much of the success I’ve over the last year. Most notably, the courage to jump in with both feet and follow my passion for helping women improve their lives. Cynthia has a magnetic personality and a positivity that you just can’t resist – and she knows her stuff. She’s one of Hollywood’s favorite nutritionists and is frequently featured in the media for her extensive nutritional knowledge, upbeat attitude and fresh perspective. Enjoy!

How To Stop Those Afternoon Carb Cravings (And Why You Get Them In The First Place!)

Ever wonder why your strongest carb cravings seem to always happen right around 2 – 3pm? A primary reason is the fact that serotonin (that sexy little neurotransmitter that modulates mood, emotion, sleep, and even appetite) becomes less active midday. Yes, even neurotransmitters slack off in the afternoon. Unfortunately, that sends you scurrying for sweet and salty snacks to satisfy your “hunger”.

Interestingly enough, women are known to naturally have lower levels of serotonin than men so they are especially prone to this problem. We lovely female beings tend to get moody, irritable, and drowsy, and carbs seem like the best answer to turn those things around quickly.

Now you might be thinking, “oh those dreaded carbs”, but the truth is, carbs are not the enemy! I know what you’re thinking – “But carbs will make me gain weight!” (don’t you love how I’m having this conversation without you?). Well, that thought is a myth generated by the fact that most people associate carbs with processed sugars, white flour breads, white rice and pasta, greasy fries and potato chips. These simple refined carbs will definitely cause you to gain weight. And while they will give you an energy spike, it will quickly be followed by an even sharper crash that will leave you once again craving more refined carbs. See how this could turn into a vicious cycle fast?

The secret is to choose complex carbs. Studies show that eating a diet filled with healthy carbohydrates can actually help you lose weight! Some examples of complex carbs include brown rice, steel-cut oatmeal, spinach, zucchini, asparagus, beans, lentils, grapefruit, apples and strawberries – basically fresh fruits, veggies, and whole grains. These are much better than refined carbs because they’re lower on the glycemic index, which means they won’t promote fat storage. They also give you long-term energy and curb cravings over an extended period of time whereas refined sugars like cola and cookies will leave you craving more in minutes!

You should never completely cut carbs out of your diet – especially when you’re having cravings. Your body is trying to tell you something so pay attention, beautiful! Indulging in a healthy carbohydrate snack will increase your body’s production of serotonin within 20 to 30 minutes leaving you energized, refocused and ready for whatever the afternoon brings!

sweet potato recipe

Need help choosing a quick and delicious snack? Try my Super Simple Savory Sweet Potato (say that five times fast!) recipe!

Ingredients:
1 medium sweet potato
1 pinch cinnamon
½ teaspoon coconut oil

Directions:
1. Pierce sweet potato with a fork and bake at 400 degrees until tender.
2. Top with coconut oil and sprinkle with cinnamon.
3. Dig in!

PINK Method

A litte bit about Cynthia…
Cynthia Pasquella is a clinical nutritionist, holistic life coach, media personality and best-selling author. Her unique method of Transformational Nutrition™ has helped hundreds of thousands of women across the world change their bodies and their lives. In a nutshell, she helps women make over their ass and their lives at the same time! Cynthia is the co-founder of SoCal Cleanse, an award winning detoxification company, and the author of the Hungry Hottie Cookbook and P.I.N.K. Method. She is the nutrition expert for The Doctors, Dr. Phil, The Today Show and has been featured on Access Hollywood, E! News Live, Harper’s Bazaar, Fitness Magazine, Shape Magazine and Marie Claire. She studied nutrition and holistic health at DePaul University, UCLA’s Center for Mindfulness, Cornell University’s Plant Based Nutrition program (founded by Dr. T. Colin Campbell of The China Study) among other institutes of higher learning. Cynthia lives in Los Angeles with her husband, daughter and 3 adopted furkids. Please visit her at www.cynthiapasquella.com.

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