Guest Article : Melody Lovell : Melody Lovell
As an EFT Practitioner (Emotional Freedom Technique) I get to help those who have food cravings, whether it be for biscuits, chocolate, hula hoops, peanuts, iced buns, polo mints…you name it! The technique is so very effective in reducing cravings but once the client no longer craves that (whole) packet of biscuits or (two)bars of chocolate, they don’t know what healthier alternative to opt for. Rachelle Strauss, a nutritional counsellor is joining me as we look at ‘Tea and Biscuits’. She has some great advice on how to make this special time healthier.
What is it about tea and biscuits we so love? Is it the comfort we receive in that moment of relaxation? The ritual of dunking in your biscuit? Is it the social necessity when meeting with friends or associates?
And what’s wrong with tea and biscuits anyway? If you’re having one plain digestive biscuit with a plain cup of tea – and the majority of food you’re eating in a day is healthy – then we’re going to suggest you carry on enjoying your daily ritual! Yay!
If, however, your tea has 3 spoons of sugar in it and the one biscuit isn’t enough and you’re eating half a packet before you’ve realised, then there is probably a bit more behind it and EFT aka ‘Tapping’ can help with this kind of indulgence.
For those of you who have not yet discovered EFT it’s a simple, non-invasive, self-administered technique. It involves you gently tapping on various acupressure points on the face and upper body whilst focusing on the intensities surrounding the craving, including its smell, taste, your desire, your physical sensations and feelings.
After two or three EFT sessions, the desire is no longer strong. The 3 spoonfuls of sugar in tea is now not necessary, one biscuit instead of the whole packet is sufficient. The aim is not to stop the enjoyment of certain foods, instead it gives the person more choice over what or how much they want to eat.
Within each person and in each craving there holds a different story. EFT works in different ways for different people. One simple session and some self-practice could be enough to get one person off to a good start but for someone else there could be deeper issues behind a particular craving and several one-to-one EFT sessions can help look at these (but in a safe way where delving into past trauma is not necessary).
Our bodies hold emotional memories and I often find that people associate having tea with happy times when they were younger. It could be when visiting Grandad and the way he dunked his biscuit in his tea. Or when Mum took you to the cafe after the weekly shopping. Have a think about what you love so much about tea and biscuits? Does it remind you of something particular?
So, what if you still want that cup of tea ‘time’ but you no longer desire the sweetest biscuits or the whole bar of chocolate? What choices do you have? What can you have that is healthier but still satisfying? Rachelle suggests a few things you could do…
Take note of the ingredients:
If you choose to have a biscuit but find what you used to like is now too sweet, take a moment to read the ingredients on the biscuit packet. Are they full of artificial sweeteners, flavours and colours? Are there hydrogenated oils in there or excessive in sugar or syrups? You could either find a brand that makes organic, plain digestives or you could get in the kitchen and bake your own. Biscuits only have three basic ingredients – flour, butter and sugar; they’re simple to make, you can make the ingredients as healthy as you choose and what could be better than your own home baked cookies?
If wheat is an issue:
If you want to reduce the amount of wheat you’re eating, there are biscuits made from oats available (the brand Nairns make a range of oat biscuits including dark chocolate chip, mixed berries and stem ginger) or you could try flapjack (Doves Farm make a good range). Alternatively take a look at Nakd, who make a range of bars from raw fruits and nuts with no added nasties. For a snack that has both less wheat AND sugar, a simple flapjack can be made at home from melting butter, adding some sugar free jam or puree then stirring in oats before baking. Feel free to contact me for the full recipe.
Instead of biscuits:
If you feel your diet needs a complete overhaul you could replace biscuits with something else entirely such as a bowl of natural yogurt with a sprinkle of cinnamon, a handful of mixed nuts and seeds (you’ll be amazed how much more satisfied you feel after eating something like this) or a banana. Rice cakes, corn cakes or oatcakes spread with mashed avocado, a fresh fruit salad or vegetable sticks with hummous will all keep you feeling fuller for longer, will balance your blood sugar levels AND provide you with better nutrition.
Instead of builders tea:
Why not use your tea for supportive purposes? Instead of builders’ tea, which can cause some people to get jittery and anxious you could swap for a soothing cuppa. There are various herbal teas that have particular benefits such as chamomile for releasing tension, lemonbalm for soothing the mind and if you’re feeling run down, thyme tea will give your immune system a boost. Have a browse in your local health food shop and see what is available.
All in all it depends on WHY you want to change your habit and what you’re looking to achieve. There’s no ‘one size fits all’ approach as your diets and needs are as individual as you are. But rest assured, with the right support it’s much easier to change your habits than you think.Back to blog