It’s Day 8 of Simplify 7 and all is still going well. I’m eating well on my seven foods and hunger hasn’t been a problem. I admit I’m getting a little bored with chicken everyday – though I spur myself on with the thought that this is such a first world problem and I really need to get over myself. Strangely enough, I’m not craving any other kind of meat, but I am missing cheese, pulses, eggs, etc. I suppose what I really miss is variety – and the privilege of having so much choice.
Cravings are funny things. The dictionary describes a craving as ‘a powerful desire for something’. Anecdotal evidence suggests that the something is very likely to be something that you can’t easily have. There are those who believe that food cravings are your body’s way of trying to tell you what you need. I’m not sure I can quite accept that anybody really needs chocolate, cheese and onion crisps, or a glass of red wine…even if it feels that way sometimes.
They can be very distracting, creeping up on you and then dominating your thoughts. It can be hard to concentrate on anything else until the craving has been satisfied!
Before I started Simplify 7, I was experiencing food cravings on an almost daily basis. I could only imagine they were going to get worse. I mean, if I was already feeling like I couldn’t face the drive home without a chocolate fix, what was I going to be like when I couldn’t actually have any chocolate without breaking the fast?
Surprise, surprise! I can’t claim to have been free of all cravings, but they certainly haven’t been anywhere near as bad as I expected. The food cravings I’ve had have been fleeting and easy to manage. Of course, there have been times when I have longed for a cup of coffee, but to be honest it was more about habit than a real desire for the coffee. You know, just finished the shopping and I deserve a 10 minute sit down with a cup of coffee? Or, just arrived at work and my computer is taking an age to fire up… I’ll just put the kettle on? Herbal tea doesn’t quite hit the spot in the same way – but I’m learning to be satisfied with less.
There must be something about a radically simplified diet – and the conscious decision to commit to it for a specific period of time – that is actually stronger than any cravings. It’s a good feeling. I feel better than I have felt for a good long time – and at a time when work related stress is reaching an annual peak!
Most importantly, breaking these chains in my own life puts me in a far better position to ‘break the chains of injustice‘ in others lives. It’s remarkably liberating, in ways I never really expected, to limit my choices to just 7 foods. There’s no point giving mental energy to food cravings. I can expend it in much more useful ways – now that I actually feel I have some!