Coffee Connection

Mastermind Weekend 1/16

Hey there!

I'm Tina

I’m the owner of Carrots ‘N’ Cake as well as a Certified Nutrition Coach and Functional Diagnostic Nutrition Practitioner (FDN-P). I use macros and functional nutrition to help women find balance within their diets while achieving their body composition goals.


An in-depth, 4-week reverse dieting course for women who feel like their metabolism has slowed down, think they might have hormonal imbalance and can’t lose weight no matter what they do.

I’m really sad to admit this, but I think that my daily iced coffee habit might also contribute to my sugar cravings. Remember how I skipped my usual glass of iced coffee with breakfast this morning? Well, I didn’t crave sweets after I finished eating my bowl of oatmeal like I normally do. Maybe I was in a different mindset this morning, knowing that I’d wait until after dinner to treat myself, but I didn’t feel those usual mid-morning cravings.

Eventually, I drank an iced coffee with only milk in it, so I never really craved sugar this morning. Of course, if someone gave me a cupcake, I wouldn’t turn it down, but you know what I mean! 😉 Maybe cutting back on the amount of iced coffee that I drink is my next experiment.


Mal and I spent most of the morning doing a little shopping. He was in the market for a new winter coat.

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And let me tell you, it was a tough decision for him! We spent over an hour at REI while he tried on different coats and debated between his favorites.

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Mal and I are both very careful with how we spend our (personal) money, so I understand why he put so much thought into his purchase. Eventually, he decided on a nice little number!

It took me 10 seconds to decide which Gu I wanted to buy. Vanilla Bean, baby!

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At home, I whipped up a quick lunch: quiona with baked tofu chunks, roasted brussels sprouts, and balsamic vinegar.

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It was an awesome combination of flavors and textures! Quinoa rules.

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Lunch left me feeling very satisfied, but I still have a hankering for something sweet. Maybe brushing my teeth with help? I feel like the taste in my mouth is giving me the urge to eat something sugary. I’m not going to give in!!

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Time to take the pug to the dog park!

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See ya for dinner!



  1. I think you want sweets more out of habit than because of a craving- I’m the same way after dinner!! Good job with your efforts….I’m interested to hear what works for you, since I’m also trying to kick my habit!!

  2. I love quinoa, too – I always feel so satisfied but not stuffed after eating quinoa. I probably eat it almost everyday since it’s a good vegetarian protein source. I’m like Mal – I would have tried on every jacket in the store to be sure I got the right one.

  3. Mmm, quinoa certainly is awesome!

    Have you thought about gum or a lollipop when you absolutely positively have to have something sweet? I was huge on lifesavers, tootsie pops, or big red when I didnt want a big dessert but wanted a little something. Also, what about those chocolate calcium chews? Granted it’s not a dessert, but it’s fairly close to candy, and you’re getting a little nutrient boost in there too!

  4. My sugar cravings come after I eat lunch and I noticed that if I chew a piece of sugarfree gum right after lunch, I don’t get the craving. Love the new web design!!

  5. I’ve had so many issues with sugar. I, like you, was told to give it up. But I didn’t want to. I didn’t want to deprive myself and thought I could handle just a little bit. Well, that never worked out so well.

    Eventually, (with prodding from a friend) I decided to stop buying sugary things. If they weren’t in the house, I wouldn’t be tempted and couldn’t eat (or binge) on the stuff. I did it begrudgingly. But lo and behold, it really helped.

    Now, I mostly just eat fruit. (I even had trouble with that! I’ve had to cut down – I am a super fiend for anything sweet).

    I’m certainly not going to tell you what to do or what will work best for you – but I’m someone who has had serious issues with the stuff and I found that mostly avoiding it has been the best thing I ever did. I don’t feel deprived at all – like I thought I would. In fact, I feel healthier and I feel like I am free from being a slave to the white stuff.

    Yes, I do still eat sugar. But I don’t keep it in my house all the time. I indulge on occassion – I make it a treat. I feel like cutting it out for a while made it easier for me – and made it so that now I can enjoy it in moderation.

    It also helps that I suddenly became very particular about the source – high quality natural stuff versus say M&M’s. Real stuff doesn’t quite set me off as much as the processed type of foods.

    What also has helped was trying to limit myself – no more than the recommded 6tsp per day. I became a label fiend and sought to eliminate it wherever possible – like jelly on toast. I don’t need it. Once I stopped, I didn’t miss it like I thought I might. I realized that having sugar only makes me want more sugar.

    I also think of my health and appearance – what is sugar really doing for me besides upping my risk of getting ill, rotting my teeth, etc.

    Overall, it’s not worth it. I feel out of control around it. It isn’t a good thing for me. And it’s not deprivation – I’ve traded in the sugar for better health and more nutritious foods. I thought I’d be missing out and fought giving it up but keeping it as just a rare treat works so much better for me.

    I hope you can conquer your sugar problems. I wish you the best. 🙂

  6. I think seeing how your breakfast/coffee affects your cravings is definitely smart. Iced coffee actually prevents my cravings. Is it possible you didn’t think about dessert because you were busy shopping? See if it has the same effect on a more typical day.
    PS – I just finished lunch, thought about dessert, considered grabbing a piece of fruit instead but then just filled a tall glass with water and sipping it now. I think it actually worked! Fruit instead of a post lunch dessert is something I’m working on and have been semi-successful. I think it’s a good compromise since I know I’ll be having a post dinner “real” treat.

  7. You are starting to make me paranoid about my sugar intake!! I went through a phase similar to yours a few months ago, but I’ve grown out of concern. It is possible to overthink it. I find that if I’m paying too much attention to my diet, that’s when I start getting wonky cravings and struggle for control. The more you think about sugar, the more you are going to crave it!!

  8. It probably isn’t the coffee that makes your crave sugar but the sweetener that you use. It has been proved that sugar substitutes cause you to crave sugar! Your brain isn’t stupid and when you give it sugar subs it says, “hey that wasn’t the real thing but now I WANT the real thing.” So you shouldn’t have to quit your coffee but maybe just quit the sweetener.

      1. In your post you said you “only” added milk? What do you usually add? I think that coffee (even with milk) DEFINITELY sets me up for sweets in the day – I think that creamy, comforting coffee just gives you that mindset!

  9. I know what you mean about the sweet craving only for me it is an apple craving. I know that seems weird, but after lunch and dinner, I crave a sweet juicy crisp apple. I don’t know if it is for the sweetness or the fact that it cleanses the palette. I do think you can change food cravings, but I think repetition is the only way to train yourself.

  10. I really wish you the best of luck with your sugar cravings… I was the same way but my issue was massive amounts of frozen yogurt! Then over the yrs i became lactose intolerant and I really had no choice but to give it up. It was hard at first but it got really easy over time. Then after about 2 yrs I lost about 20 lbs! This was the only habit I changed too! This was about 10 yrs ago and I ve never gained it back! Crazy! Aloha:)

  11. i know what you mean about the taste in your mouth giving you a sugar craving. if i eat something spicy, salty, or with strong flavors, i REALLY start to crave sweets! sometimes a suck on a mint or chew a piece of gum, and it helps!

  12. Oh man, I’d rather give up all sweets than give up my morning coffee! Hopefully you won’t have to cut back on your iced coffee too much.

    Although my morning started with a cinnamon roll and it made me feel so yucky that I’m turned off sugar right now. Maybe you could try that…stuffing your face with so much sugar in the morning that for the rest of the day you’re so sick of it and don’t want it at all. Ha ha…just kidding….sort of. 🙂

  13. Well, I can honestly tell you I’ve never been able to make a connection between my coffee habits and my sugar habits! (I always use cream and Splenda) Geez, asking me to give up coffee and sugar both would be like asking me to cut off my right arm. 😉
    If I don’t have a very satisfying meal I tend to want sugar to “get the taste out of my mouth”. I just ordered a bunch of pre-cut veggies from Peapod, hoping that will do the trick. I noshed on them a lot while I was home for Christmas. (thanks, Mom, for having them on hand!)

  14. That’s great that you think you found a huge part of the sugar craving connection puzzle piece for your own body…whether it’s the iced coffee, the caffeine, placebo effect, whatever it is…and now you KNOW that or think there’s a big connection…that’s huge progress! Congrats on the detective work 🙂

  15. Not sure if it would help or hurt your sugar needs but maybe chew a piece of gum when you have a craving? or a mint? I personally go and brush my teeth after so I don’t eat the sugar afterward and get cavities…it works, most of the time. That or I drink a big glass of water…it usually does the trick 🙂 Thank you for sharing your journey 😀

    Also, LOVE the new set-up!

  16. Maybe someone already suggested this on previous post but I get through my sugar cravings after meals with gum. The new Extra Dessert Delights are awesome. I’m currently chewing on a piece of Mint Chocolate Chip and you know what?? It actually tastes like Mint Chocolate Chip ice cream. Crazy!

  17. I’ve been on a quinoa extravaganza lately… your lunch looks great! I was thinking about your sugar cravings and how I used to experience the same thing. One strategy I’ve found that helps is either to brush your teeth or chew a piece of minty gum immediately after a meal. With a nice fresh taste in my mouth, the thought of eating something sweet reminds me of when I was little and my mum would make me finish my juice after breakfast – it tasted GROSS if I’d already brushed my teeth!

  18. Love the new blog format, looks clean and crisp!! Also, I love Murphy haha. I booted sugar from my morning coffee a couple months ago (just half & half now) and you don’t even miss it after about a week. I let myself put raw sugar in on the weekends, so it makes it a treat and not a daily routine.

  19. Hello Tina,

    Long time reader – first time commenter!

    Good luck fighting your sugar cravings. I don’t keep sweets in the house because it is ridiculous how fast I consume readily available treats. I wish you much success on your journey.

    One of the things that helps me fight sugar cravings is to remind myself that sugar is not good for my body. It reinforces my desire to provide my body with healthy nutrients and makes it easier for me to turn down sugar treats.

    I came across a great article about sugar cravings today:

  20. I have found that Diet Coke causes me to have sugar cravings! I think it has got to have something to do with the Nutrisweet. If I don’t have a DC….I find that my sugar cravings go way, way down! Good luck!

    1. This is so true! I stopped drinking diet coke for a few months and both my soda/sugar cravings went down but as soon as I started drinking it, I started experiencing serious cravings for sweet drinks and food.

  21. I was having the same exact “sweet craving” issue after Thanksgiving– handfuls of chocolate chips disappeared from my baking cabinet with alarming regularity.

    Recently I’ve begun heating up a handful frozen blueberries and serving them over a small portion of greek yogurt. It satisfies the sweet craving, but it’s also the perfect size for a snack! Plus the added benefit of protein 🙂

  22. caffeine can definitely throw your blood sugar for a whirlwind, especially when consumed in the morning on a nearly empty stomach. consuming caffeine with a high carbohydrate breakfast (oats) could be causing your blood sugar to spike and then dip rapidly. when your blood sugar gets low your body tends to crave sweets to bring it back up, but giving in to the craving continues to put your blood sugar on a roller coaster–causing you to continue to crave sweets throughout the day. i’ve been experimenting with cutting out caffeine, eating a high protein (think egg scramble with LOTS of veggies) breakfast, eating 5-6 meals a day about 3-4 hours apart, and moving my workouts to the evenings when my blood sugar is more stable and I’ve found that I’m craving sweets and thinking about food less. maybe either cutting out caffeine or moving it to after lunch time if it doesn’t keep you up at night might help. or eating a higher protein breakfast and saving oats for lunch. just some ideas…

  23. Love the new web design too, TIna!
    Good for you for figuring out sugar-related things.. I really need to take a cue from you because I am a little sugared out after this break! Good luck on your long run tomorrow!

    Also; totally agree on the whole spending *personal money* carefully — I do that too, but I think it makes those ‘big’ purchases seem more special!

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