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NewsBites October 2017 Issue

Beating Food Cravings

Do foods like cake, cookies and potato chips seem to call your name when you're on a weight-loss diet? It may help to cut out such foods completely, say the authors of a new study in the journal Obesity.

"This is best accomplished by purging your home and workplace of your most-craved food items - in other words, do a cabinet cleanout," says John Apolzan, PhD, lead author of the study at Louisiana State University’s Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge. "If that isn't possible, decrease how frequently you eat craved food items. However, our research suggests this approach decreases your chances of success losing weight and maintaining weight loss compared to eliminating craved items from the diet." What didn’t seem to work for controlling food cravings? Continuing to eat craved foods but trying to reduce the amount (portion size).

The researchers compared data on cravings and food intake reported by 367 overweight or obese men and women (ages 30 to 70) in a two-year weight loss trial. Notably, the study wasn’t a type that could show cause and effect. And, it’s uncertain whether efforts to restrict craved foods may lead chronic dieters to overeat such foods.

To learn more: Obesity, August 2017

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