I am a long time reader of most of the popular paleo blogs. I feel like I have a pretty good handle on how to eat. I typically stick to the The 10 Commandments (yes, I know there's 12, but in light of Kurt continually referring to GCBC as the Bible, it seems appropriate). However I frequently fall victim to 'The Sugar Binge': A pint of ice cream. A bag of York Peppermint Patties. A sleeve of Thin Mints. What are some good strategies to curb this behavior?
You asked this quite a while ago, but one thing that I use sometimes that could work, if you're still struggling with this:
Promise to yourself that if you do cheat, it has to be the absolute best poison or nothing. No thin mints for you, you only compromise yourself with the finest culinary creations of chef fancypants at the town's most respected bakery/restaurant. Same for the ice cream, only the finest ice cream, you can make a list of the best sorts.
Now, I doubt that your family and friends get these best of the best treats on a regular basis. I'm willing to bet that most are not foodies and get inferior-tasting desserts that, rather than being slaved over by important chefs, have been processed by machines and minimum wage workers.
And that is not worth poisoning yourself with. So you'd have quite a bit less temptation with those standards.
If you're going to cheat, develop a cheating strategy in advance with less harmful cheats--higher in fat and lower in sugar than your current faves. Others have made great suggestions here. I like anything with heavy cream in it--coffee or tea with cream, berries and cream, whey protein powder with cream, etc. If you don't like "real" dark chocolate, start with a non-paleo chocolate such as Hershey's special dark or Dove dark, then gradually ramp up the cacao content as high as you can stand. Your tastes will re-adjust after a few weeks, and it will get easier to avoid the binges.
Dr. Julia Ross recommends taking 500mg of L-Glutamine when you get sugar cravings. Just open the capsule up and put it under your tongue. If that doesn't work within 10-15min, take another 500mg.
I have tried this and it works for me.
I have found my sugar cravings have been their strongest when I had not eaten for longer than I'm use to, or had engaged in more physical exercise or activity than my daily meals seemed to fuel me for.
I suspect that if you just eat something else high in fat like nuts or very pure dark chocolate, your craving will go away.
Overall, I think going cold turkey and staying off the sugars will prevent the cravings from coming back. People like having cheat meals, but in reality I think its like letting an alcoholic have a drink once a week. It just tempts them into going overboard.
I've found the high protein sources other than meat (eg, yogurt greek or otherwise, cottage cheese, regular cheese, nuts), trigger sugar binges. Cutting those out completely fixed it.
Depending on how you feel about dairy, I've found that Extra Creamy Whip Cream is good to satisfy a small sweet tooth, especially with a bit of dark chocolate.
I think gum also helps keep it under control.
That being said, I think Patrick's advise is best: Use your judgment when you're shopping, not when you're craving - you can't eat what you don't buy.
More fat. Huge amounts to begin. It´ll level by. Or pure keto way. If you had a lot of sugar in your past you may need some B supplements. Those are waste away by sugar. Some people get rid of cravings with Vitamin B complex.
I've gotten rid of sugar cravings by eating enough fat during meals, and intermittent fasting. Once you've fasted for 20 hours a few times, it seems pretty easy to avoid sugar in your day-to-day life.
Find a substitute food and have plenty of it around (for me, it's something high fat like nuts) and don't worry about over eating it.
I find I need to avoid it completely - no small cheats for long periods - not even a bite of something.