Skill power, not willpower
Understand why you eat the way you do and what to do about it
- You’d rather eat the carrot cake than the carrot
- You go to buy milk and leave with $80 worth of groceries
- Chocolate and fast foods are your ‘go-to’ solutions when you feel stressed
- You crave certain foods at certain times
- You keep eating when you know you’ve had enough
- You know what to eat, but have trouble making healthy choices
- You’ve made positive changes to your eating but then gone back to less healthy habits
Do you want to improve what, when or how much you eat?
Then the Craving Change™ program is for you! It’s Canada’s #1 cognitive-behavioural program for people who struggle with their eating habits. The practical, skill-based approach will help you:
- Understand why you eat the way you do.
- Learn how your eating decisions are influenced by your surroundings, your body and what you learned while growing up.
- Become more aware of your problematic eating triggers.
- Tune into your thoughts and emotions that steer you off track.
- Use 16 ‘change and maintain’ strategies and resources to change your eating for good.
- Have a healthier relationship with food!
All you need is your mind! That’s because it’s our thinking habits that guide our eating habits.
What is the Craving Change™ Program all about?
The first goal of the Craving Change program is to help you understand ‘why’ you eat the way you do. This is a very important step for changing your eating. The program helps you discover the situations, thoughts and emotions that affect your food choices. This is called a cognitive-behavioural approach. You will then learn how to deal with your specific eating struggles by changing your thoughts and/or behaviours.
The program has four components:
- Why It’s Hard to Change – understand how our society, your body and your learned behaviors influence your eating habits
- What Needs Changing? – use a variety of tools and techniques to discover your problematic eating triggers
- How You Can Change – learn 16 strategies with ‘how-to’ instructions for changing your eating triggers and/or response
- Keep the Change – find out how to deal with slips and maintain positive changes
There is a workbook that accompanies the program.
The cognitive-behavioural model is an approach that helps us understand our well-being and behaviour. For decades, it has received strong support in research. The model looks at how ‘internal’ events such as our thoughts and feelings affect our behaviour. Our thoughts, feelings and behaviours each strongly impact one another. The Craving Change program is based on this cognitive-behavioural approach in relation to eating behaviours. This model has also been well supported by research for programs that are relatively short-term, and interventions that are offered to individuals or to groups.
No, this program is not specifically designed to provide the what, when and how much advice for weight loss. However, if you are trying to change your eating, the self-awareness techniques and strategies that you will learn in the program will help you. More importantly, these skills may help you stick with positive changes that you make for the long term.
Absolutely! The program is for anyone who is trying to make healthy changes to their eating. In fact, the clinical practice guidelines for these chronic conditions recommend the use of cognitive-behaviour techniques.
To use the Craving Change approach, program and resources in their practice, a clinician must have a license with Craving Change Inc. The clinician must be a regulated health care provider such as a dietitian, nurse, social worker, psychologist, pharmacist, physiotherapist, or doctor. The clinician completes an online training course and certification exam to become a Certified Craving Change Facilitator. The clinician can then use the Craving Change program with individual clients or offer group workshops.
Tell me more about the Craving Change™ program workshops
The program is for adults over the age of 18 years who struggle to make and maintain positive changes with their eating. The group workshops are not recommended for someone who has been diagnosed with an eating disorder such as anorexia or bulimia. Individual counselling with a certified Craving Change clinician may be available.
The Craving Change program is offered over a series of anywhere from three to six weekly workshops, depending on the organization or clinician. Each workshop is usually around two hours in length.
There is a 64-page printed workbook that accompanies the Craving Change™program. This may be available from the licensed organization or clinician. They may also provide single Craving Change handouts and worksheets to program attendees.
The workshop facilitators are health care providers who are members of a regulated health profession. The facilitator or clinician has successfully completed the Craving Change Facilitator training and certification process. They will be following a structured program outline and referring to a manual developed for the program workshops.
The cost is determined by the licensed organization or clinician. Some health organizations offer the program free of charge. Others charge a registration fee or a small fee for the program workbook. Those who offer an extended version of the program, say over a six-week timeframe, may charge a higher fee.
Contact the licensed Craving Change clinician or organization in your area. Use the Find a Craving Change Clinician list on our website. You can also contact local primary care networks, family health teams or clinics that have a dietitian. They may also offer the program and will explain how to register.
No, the workbook is currently not available directly to the public. You may only obtain a workbook from a health care provider or organization who have a license with Craving Change Inc. If you want to get started on your own, we recommend the children’s book, “Is this stomach, mouth or heart hunger? that you can purchase from our website. Although it is written for children and parents, the message, appendix and free downloadable handouts are based on the most popular activity in the Craving Change program.
What if I’m interested in individual counselling?
Not necessarily. Many clinicians licensed and trained with Craving Change use concepts and materials from the Craving Change program when they see clients one-on-one. You can contact a Craving Change clinician or health care organization in your area directly to ask about individual counselling.
If you can’t find a Certified Craving Change clinician on our website list, there could still be a licensed health care provider in your area. You can search the following in your area and contact them directly. Ask if they have providers who are licensed with the Craving Change program.
- Private practice dietitians
- Family health teams
- Primary care networks
- Regional health organizations
- Community health care organizations
Find a Craving Change™ Clinician
Contact a Craving Change licensed health care professional in your area for group workshops or individual counselling.
The following is a list of clinicians who have successfully completed Craving Change training and certification. Craving Change Inc. cannot ensure compliance with the program and is not responsible for the actions of these clinicians. The appearance of their name on this list is not an endorsement, but serves to enable public access to their services.
This list is not, under any circumstances, to be used as a mailing list.
Book for Kids and Parents
One of the most popular eating self-awareness techniques in the Craving Change program is to ask yourself the question, ‘Is this stomach, mouth or heart hunger?’ Answering this question helps you discover why you’re eating or thinking about food. This simple technique can be learned by young children. They can also learn to satisfy each kind of ‘hunger’ in a way that promotes the development of a healthy relationship with food and eating.