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Satisfy Your Post-Workout Sweet Tooth

You’re feeling great after powering through an intense workout. But then the craving for something sweet strikes, threatening to undo all of your hard work. Sound familiar? If you find yourself dreaming of desserts after a long workout, science says you’re not alone. A recent study published by the Journal of Health Psychology concluded that acute exercise just might increase your hankering for sweet treats, so we’re here to offer you some alternatives!

The study asked participants to indicate their interest in a series of miscellaneous photos, including desserts, before and after a difficult task. Half the participants were given a brain challenge and the other half were put through strenuous exercise; after the task, the exercise group showed a much stronger preference for dessert foods than the brain challenge group.

But what does this mean? Well, strictly speaking, it only proves that acute exercise increases preference for photos of dessert foods. But the implications of this study are much larger, and they hit home: your post-workout sweet tooth might be biological! Post-workout pastries and pies aren’t ideal, but you don’t have to ignore your body’s cravings for sweets. Here are our tips for satisfying your post-workout sweet tooth in the most helpful, healthy way.

Craving Ice Cream? Blend a Banana Smoothie
This almond butter and banana smoothie is just as rich as ice cream, but it packs a much healthier punch. Bananas are rich in potassium and vitamin B6, making them perfect for preventing post-workout bloating and cramps. Plus, the almonds will give your metabolism an extra boost while also lowering cholesterol and risk of heart disease.

Trade Soda for Fruit-infused Seltzer
In addition to increased blood pressure and risk of obesity, Harvard researchers connected regular soda consumption with a higher risk of Type 2 diabetes. For a healthier option, swap out a sugar-pumped cola for a homemade fruit-infused seltzer. Sweeten the drink to your liking with in-season citrus and berries.

Eat a Juice Plus+ Complete Bar, Not a Cookie
If you don’t have time to make a snack at home, pack some protein into your gym bag! Each Juice Plus+ Complete Nutrition Bar contains 5g of fiber and 5-10g of protein—perfect for a post-workout boost. Complete Bars are gluten-free, low-glycemic, non-dairy and vegetarian, making them an easy choice for a post-workout pick-me-up!

How do you curb your post-workout cravings? Let us know in the comments below!

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