Ingredients
Servings
4
Recipe by
Paola Cornu, RDN
, photo by
, nutritional review by
Test Kitchen
Nutrition
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Article by
Paola Cornu, RDN
, photo by
Kick off a lifetime of healthy habits through keto
Personalized Keto meal plans
+1000 delicious, fast & easy-to-follow recipes
LearnEat: A complete Keto diet guide for beginners
Grocery list builder
Go ahead, move one step to your goals
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Let's face it, cravings are inevitable on any diet, and keto is no exception. We want what we cannot have, the grass is always greener…you get the picture.

What causes carbohydrate cravings?

We must recognize that these carbohydrate cravings are not solely psychological. There are physiological reasons why we dislike carbohydrates, particularly the sweet carbohydrate class known as sugar 🧁.

Physical causes 💪🏻

When you eat carbohydrates, they end up in your bloodstream as glucose in blood. This glucose provides energy to the cells in your body. Because carbohydrate consumption is reduced in keto, glucose intake is also reduced, which is the key to many of the benefits experienced on keto.

But getting used to this does not happen immediately.

Cravings can be triggered by sugar withdrawal. In fact, ingesting sugar activates areas of the brain that are comparable to those activated by addictive drugs, according to a study. We crave it more when it is taken away ☝🏻.

Psychological causes 🧠

This will shock you because it is far more prevalent than we realize. Consider how nice it would be to be able to smell something delicious. Maybe a piece of cake 🍰.

Isn't it enough to make your mouth water? But in reality, you'd want to eat that piece of cake, even if you were full.

Even if your nutritional needs are completely met, your environment – what you see, smell, hear, taste, and touch – can stimulate desires.

Has this happened to you?

Well, luckily, we have some tips on how to help you deal with and stop those cravings.

Ways to control carb cravings 🛂

Keep carbs low 📉

The Keto diet's basic rule is to restrict carbs to a minimum. Keeping carbs to minimum aids your body's switch from sugar to fat burning.

This shift is slowed when your keto diet contains too many carbs. Your body becomes perplexed. Do you want to use fat or sugar? If it believes the answer is "sugar," then you'll continue to crave sweets.

Control your environment 🔍

As we mentioned before, when you reduce the number of sights and odors that trigger desires, you reduce the number of cravings.

Consider your kitchen to be a laboratory. The goal of that experiment is to encourage people to eat more healthily.

If at all possible, keep carbs out of the house. If this isn't possible because of children, or partners, at least try your best to keep them hidden. 

Eat low-carb vegetables full of fiber 🥦

Kale, spinach, cauliflower, broccoli, and asparagus are some of the most nutrient-dense vegetables available.

Fiber is an indigestible carbohydrate. Yes, fiber is a carb, but don't worry, it won't knock you out of ketosis.

Quite the opposite, in fact. Fiber fills you up without adding calories to your diet.

Get enough sleep 😴

If you're not getting enough sleep, your capacity to resist carbs will suffer. Sleep deprivation has been proven to increase ghrelin, the hunger hormone.

As a result, obtaining enough sleep is critical for controlling cravings. You'll be glad you got your seven to nine hours.

Keep yourself well hydrated 💦

Thirst is a good predictor of fluid requirements, but electrolytes such as sodium and potassium may require more consideration.

It's possible that what you think is a carb craving is actually a salt craving. It's logical, in evolutionary terms. 

What is the solution? 👀 Toss a few salts shakes into your drink (a more tasty option is broth) and a few more into your food. You may notice that your "carb" cravings subside.

Consume healthy fats 🥑

Satiety is dependent on dietary fat in particular. It can help you avoid overeating by decreasing your appetite.

You'll be less likely to grab for the carbs if you load up on healthy fats at every meal.

Reduce stress 🧘🏼

Congratulations: you're a real human being if you've ever had the temptation to eat sugar while you're anxious.

Sugary foods are hard-wired into our brains to provide a momentary high. We are literally addicted to them.

Stress management can go a long way toward improving your nutrition. To reduce daily stress, cultivate healthy habits such as meditating.


Rather than allowing your cravings to overpower you, use these strategies to maintain control over your sweet appetite. It won't always be easy, but with the correct nutrition, and mindset, it'll be a lot easier than you think.