T Nation

Controlling the urge for garbage food

From sweets to pizza, how do you say no when you really want it? Often times it happens so quickly and then you’re regretting the impulse that was acted upon.

Do you eat a substitute food?
Drink water?
Keep yourself busy?
Eat some celery/fiber?

I’m looking for some additional ideas to get some control.

What works for you?

Sugar free chewing gum helps me…but basically you have to ask yourself if you want to improve?..or be an ALSO RAN!..for me…there is no option…


1st of all, dont put yourself in that situation if at all possible. dont have junk foods in your house and you wont be tempted to eat them.
secondly, when you start to lean towards that pizza or ice cream just remind yourself of your goal. i just keeep saying to myself 6%, 6%. that gets me refocused quick.

Method one: look in the mirror for motivation to cut down some fat.

Method two: if you’re trying to diet down, but you’re feeling uncontrollobly hungry (for me that’s about 6-7 days after a cheat day), or you just don’t want to feel hungry all day… eat Fiber One: Extra Fiber cereal. It’s virtually all fiber. It has a sorta odd taste, but it works. And not long after you’ll shit it all out and then some, a plus or minus depending on if you like that sorta thing.

Just thought I’d add this idea, it works for me when i’m at the breaking point on a diet.

Diet soda is king when it comes to on-the-stop sugar cravings.

Diet Coke. Frosted mini wheats. Carrots.

Remove them from my diet, and I’d think I’d die of an Oreo cookie overdose.


First, I second the comment about not keeping junk around in your fridge.

But if you get a craving anyway, get up and do something physical. Go for a walk, do some light stretching, jump a little rope, something. If you’re like me, the craving will pass by the time you’re done.

Anyone know anything about micronized cellulose? Apparantly, if you add it into foods (like pudding?) it’ll completely fill you up. If this was indeed the case, then it would definitely be worth getting. Although I did hear that it may expand your stomach which sort of negates the impact in the long term. Anyone know about this?

Anyone hear use guar gum? I can’t seem to find any around here although I know it’s used in some products like cottage cheese.

I’ve found the best way to prevent hunger is simply to stay busy, either that…or eat a big bowl of salad.


SUCK IT UP! :slight_smile: Kidding (well half kidding at least).

When I get cravings, I just think about how long it will take for me to lose it later (Anything more than 30 secs means I don’t have it…as you can imagine I don’t give in often!). It’s about focus, and motivation. Hell, I actually came to enjoy self-deprivation. I mean nothing better than having the people around you stuff their face with crap (and look the way they do), and think about how I look by not eating that shit.

Another method is thinking about the fat slobs that you see showering post-workout. I don’t want to be like that, so it curbs my cravings!

ahh, how to deal with cravings, the problem of so many who seek a lean physique. I usually go long periods of time without eating anything other than my clean foods. One thing I will do every so often is treat myself to a little extra of what I normally eat, like I will throw in an egg white filled with cashew butter with my last meal. These little treats are enough to make me feel a little bit of guilt, which will keep me from eating the junk food. I also plan to have cheat meals with family memebers and friends, so I have no intentions of “blowing it” and not really enjoying the cheat meal to the fullest. Also keeping busy has got to be one of the easiest ways to keep your mind of off of any type of food.

I used to be a grazer at weekends, a couple of biscuits (cookies) here, something else there and this was setting back my hard work during the week, so I changed my training week to start Saturday. I find this works really well for controlling snacking, during the week all is planned out and I can’t eat what isn’t with me.
My family eats pretty well so that helps, pizza, burgers, or fish & chips are rare.

Zulu, the manufacturer Now has a guar gum product; in powder form and capsule, both. You can also order some off of the Internet. It’s really cheap.

Guar gum is an old Dan Duchaine trick. I like to mix the powder with Crystal Light. You have to drink it REALLY FAST or it thickens to the consistency of sludge. You’ll go from ravenous to “Ahhhhhhhh!” in 30 seconds!

My girlfriend and I were talking about this the other day, and we both have experienced the longer you are eating clean, the cravings seem to die off. The only time the cravings have ever came back for a day or two, were days that we have been sick.

Ways we still enjoy the sugar taste we use Splenda. I used to add a good sum of sugar to my oatmeal, but I found out about splenda and it tastes just the same.

We also carry a lot of oranges on hand. We might have a late night sweet tooth, so we’ll pull out a few oranges and that always satisfies our needs.

Also, my g/f tends to drink a lot of water to keep her fulfilled. It doesn’t work for me, but she swears by it. We keep 2 gallons of water in our fridge always full to keep cold.

I make a big batch of chocolate protein shakes + milk + banana(or some other fruit) kept cold in the fridge each day. Whenver I want to snack or something, I’ll pour some of the thickness into a glass, and that helps. Also, for other snacks, we keep about 5-6 bags of beef jerky in our pantery at all times. We both love it, and usually will eat that late at night if we are hungry.

Hope that helps.


I read somewhere that your tastebuds’ “programming” lasts for two weeks. For example, if you’re a chocolate maniac, laying off the chocolate for two weeks means that you’ll stop craving it for good.

Hey TT,

I thought a few years ago that guar gum in capsule form was taken off the market because people got it caught in their throats. When this stuff hits any kind of liquid it starts to expand like crazy. I used to put it in tea and drink it real fast. It helped me a lot on low carb diets.

Number one thing that helps me control all my dieting urges is…Jalopanos(sp?). The burning in my mouth kills my hunger for about an hour and it is very easy to consume 64oz of water. What a good side benifit; we need tons of water on a diet.

Not the healthiest thing in the world but nicotine gum or tobacco will typically kill any cravings.

Could you add a little guar gum to a protein shake like grow to add a little thickiness?


Way to raise a question IQ :wink:
Just had this problem today…had a perfectly good dinner and then thought OH MY GOD I MUST HAVE DOUGHNUTS!
I actually made it OUT to the car, keys in hand…and then started remembering the last time I binged and how it threw my physique off for a week.
I’m back inside drinking diet coke. :slight_smile:

eleven eyes, good call. It is always better to choose not to go and pig out on impulse. I remember times of jumping in my pickup at midnight to go and pick up a pint of ice cream, now I just head down stairs and pop an egg white with some cashew butter, its even better

I didn’t meantion this in my last post, but since I eat 8 meals a day I don’t find I really crave anything (besides my next meal). I think in general just spreading out your meals as much as possible helps curve cravings since your always eating something…Hmmmmmm…That’s funny, I’m craving meal #3.