You know the deal; you’ve just picked the kids up from school, or you’re a few hours past lunch at work and your energy levels just left the building. So naturally you get a little peckish and seek out some kind of sugar laden, high carb food to satisfy. Problem is you’re trying to lose weight. And you know the choices you make in this situation are never good.

How do you cope with the mid afternoon lull and still make progress towards your fat loss goal? Or better still, how do you avoid the lull altogether?

1. Go continental

You, me and most the population are walking round sleep deprived most of the time (unless you’re getting a solid 8 hours of quality sleep each night). That paired with the natural nose dive our body’s physiology takes after midday is a recipe for cravings.

Don’t know about you, but when I’m tired I have a pretty insatiable appetite. For some reason my body thinks that eating a whole pack of shortbread biscuits will provide an extra boost (apparently that boost only lasts about half an hour and then C*R*A*S*H). So rather than pep it up with a sugar hit why not just give it what it’s asking for; 20 minutes for a little shut-eye.

If you think the kids will be a little put out that you didn’t pick them up from school, or your boss won’t be happy to find you reclined in your chair with cucumber over your eyes then maybe getting your head down for a few Zzzz’s isn’t the best option.

2. Get 8 hours sleep every night

If you’re schedule’s not flexible enough to include a quick nap (and you still want to lose fat) then work at getting your 8 hours sleep like we were designed to; by going to bed when it gets dark (no later than 10:30 is best) and stay in bed until it gets light.

If you struggle to get a good night’s sleep you might want to check out: 8 Steps to Waking Up Feeling Bright-Eyed and Bushy Tailed

Trust me, getting adequate sleep is one of the biggest steps you can take to reducing mid afternoon cravings.


3. Have an emergency meal on hand

Put together a small meal together in advance to have around the time you’d normally get cravings. Pick something that’s pro-fat loss and even if you don’t ‘feel’ like eating it and want something more appealing just put the pre-prepared meal in your face and then decide if you still want something after that 😉

Plenty of clients who’ve successfully lost fat have found the ‘Super Shake’ fits the bill:

A Super Shake requires throwing the following in a blender and blitzing for a minute or so until smooth:


  • A scoop or so of Protein Powder
  • Some fruit (banana and/or frozen blueberries work well)
  • Some kind of veggie (spinach/greens powder goes well – seriously you won’t even taste it)
  • some good fats (a tsp of peanut butter’s my favourite but a few raw nuts or tsp of flax seed oil is good too)
  • A cup or so of milk (I like rice, oat or almond milk best)
  • A few ice cubes

If you’re at home then blend it up fresh. If you’re out and about then take it with you . And if you’re in the office just put it in the fridge in the morning when you get to work.

Prepare your meal before hand (like first thing in the morning) to take choice out of the equation. If you have to choose between knocking up a quick meal and eating a slice of leftover cake then I think I know which it’s going to be.


4. Have a more substantial breakfast

Chances are you missed out on calories earlier in the day. And the body more than makes up for it by playing the craving card later on. So try giving your body a little more of what it needs at breakfast.

From most of the meal diaries I see breakfast usually lacks protein rich foods, which help boost your metabolism and keep you full. So for a better fat loss approved breakfast switch the special K to a real meal like a breakfast omelette, scrambled eggs or a supershake.


Wrap Up

So there you have it. A few ways to deal with, and hopefully prevent the mid afternoon cravings. Take a nap, get a little more sleep at night, have a pre prepared meal or eat a protein rich breakfast. Pick one and give it a try tomorrow to see how it works for you.

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