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The battle against cravings can be universal, particularly if you’re training hard and watching what you eat. But the ones that attack each of us are unique and personal.
Maybe you can’t say no to sweet treats like cookies and candy. Perhaps you hunger for salty chips and pretzels, for seemingly no good reason. Or maybe it’s sugary sodas, coffees, and energy drinks that seem to magically find their way into your hands.
Whichever gauntlet you’re running each day, we know the feeling. These are our favorite healthy, tasty allies to help fend off cravings and stay on target toward our fitness goals.
For the Sweet Tooth: Healthy Sweet “Cheats”
At some point in your fitness journey, it’s essential to build your little black book of protein treats. This often happens after you use a macro calculator and get your mind blown at how much protein you should probably be eating. But whatever causes it, it’s when you get
to know things like protein cookies, puddings, and pancakes—basically the all-stars of the Bodybuilding.com Recipe Database.
Like to get your sweet on post-workout? We’ve got you covered there, too, with these post-workout craving-busters in flavors you know and love:
For the Crunchy and Savory Craver: Snack Hacks
Snacking is the second level of dieting hell. Why? Because the most popular and convenient snacks are usually pumped full of high-fructose corn syrup and trans fats, and low in pretty much anything that could be considered “good” for your body. That’s when it pays off to stock your pantry with these better options:
Jerky: An almost pure source of protein, jerky is a time-honored healthy snack and a favorite among lifters as a quick, on-the-go savory treat to throw in your gym bag or keep in the car.
Protein Chips: The healthy chips market has exploded in recent years, with tons of innovations in flavor, texture, and crunch factor. This is the best snack you haven’t met yet.
Powdered Peanut Butter: By removing most of the fat, peanut butter powders are a lower calorie contest-prep option for many a dieter and physique competitor.
Protein Bars: In case nobody told you, we’re living in the golden age of protein bars. Those chewy dog toys you grew up eating are a thing of the past! The best new bars have peerless macros and even better flavor.
For the Sugary Sipper: Level Up Your Liquids
Some of us just can’t resist that sweet bite and sugary fizz of our favorite soft drink. Or maybe the morning just doesn’t get off to the right start without a flavored-syrup laden coffee. When fitness experts tell you to drink more water, your answer is “Water with what in it?” If that’s you, here’s how to get your liquids in line with your goals.
Protein Plus Coffee: Blend a scoop of your favorite protein powder with coffee and 1/2 a cup of ice for a refreshing, caffeinating, and protein-packed pick-me-up. Some brands like Isopure even make protein coffee that our community of reviewers raves about.
Sip on BCAAs: Dying for a cold, sweet drink in the afternoon? That’s where BCAAs are your bestie. They come in seemingly endless flavors and bring plenty of workout benefits like reducing muscle soreness and muscle protein breakdown.*
Upgrade Your Energy Drink: Stuck on sodas? Powered by energy drinks? Get your power with less downside by picking energy drinks that won’t sabotage your goals.
Slam a Protein RTD: Tired of the routine of scooping, shaking (maybe spilling), then dealing with old, potentially radioactive bottles? You’re not alone. That’s why many of the most popular protein shakes also come in ready-to-drink (RTD) form.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.