Take a Break

Stop and Smell the Eucalyptus (and You Might Gobble Fewer Chips)

Last updated: Oct 12, 2011


Find yourself unable to concentrate because you're craving a snack? Try closing your eyes and imagining flowers, or the ocean, instead. You might find that the urge passes without too much damage being done to your belly or your blood sugar. Australian researchers have shown that when cravings strike, they can literally divert our attention from the task at hand. By pausing to focus instead about a counter-image or smell that's not food-oriented, you can make the craving pass "“ and get back to work feeling good about yourself. Any pleasant image (a rainbow, roses) works; so do strong nonfood scents, like eucalyptus, which you can buy in dried form at many flower shops or as an essential oil.

-- Paula Spencer Scott