I've just re-committed myself to getting in shape (need to lose ~20lbs, would be thrilled to lose 30 or so) I've been counting calories, and while it hasn't cured my cravings, it certainly puts things in perspective for me. I no longer keep any sweets in the house, which is huge, and I've allowed myself to try using splenda in coffee and some diet lemonade- I think that having something sweet helps me not feel so deprived (and if I go crazy and wnat to "binge" on 3 cups of coffe with splenda- it won't have nay huge effect on my cal. count for the day.
I did make some observations this weekend that I find interesting. When we were out shopping last night, after dinner, with me knowing that I had 300 cals left in my daily allottment, I felt ready to treat myself and yet had a really tough time deciding that any of the sweets I looked at were really worth the calories- they're just so dense that it would only take a tiny portion to use up my 300. After driving dh batty while I walked around reading labels, I finally settled on some chocolate chip muffins mix-- got to have the plesure of baking them, licking the bowl (Mmmm), and it was a small enough package that each of us (dh, dd, and myself) could have 2 muffins, with none left over (for a total of 240 cals)- with a cup of coffee, it was quite a treat! However, after I finished my second muffin I wanted MORE. I'd been fine all week, but one sweet snack and I felt almost desperate for more sweet, doughy yumminess. If I had made a larger batch, intending to package them up for individual treats later in the week, I guarantee I would have eaten them all right then. It's hard because I do want to build little treats into my diet- but I don't know if that desperate feeling is worth it- I'm still shocked by how out of control I felt.