7 MAIN CAUSES FOR YOUR CRAVINGS (AND HOW TO HANDLE THEM)
A craving is a strong desire for something (it can be food, drugs, sex, cigarettes, etc.). Cravings can be seen as a weakness, but actually they are important messages to guide your brain into feeding your body the things it needs to function effectively. When you experience a craving, stop and think. Ask yourself, what does my body want and why?
The body is a bio computer
It knows when to go to sleep, when to wake up, and when to go to the bathroom. It maintains its temperature, repairs itself when wounded, and enables the miracle of pregnancy and childbirth. Your heart never misses a beat. Your lungs never miss a breath. The body is a super computer, and it never makes mistakes. So when your body craves something, there’s usually a good reason behind it.
Look at the foods, deficits, and behaviours in your life, these are the most likely causes of your cravings:
Most cravings come from dehydration. It’s so easy. If you crave anything, drink water first. A lot of the time the craving will subside.
2. Lack of nutrients
If the body isn’t getting the balance of nutrients it needs, it’ll produce strange cravings. For example, inadequate mineral levels trigger salt cravings, and overall imbalance in nutrition leads to cravings for temporary sources of energy, like caffeine. Use your cravings to find out what your body actually needs!
3. Sweet memories
Often cravings come from foods we’ve recently eaten, foods eaten by our ancestors, or foods from our childhood.
If you have ice cream today, the chances that you are going to crave ice cream days from now are much higher. We crave it because the body still tastes it on the back of the tongue.
You know that time when you haven’t had a croissant for two years and you have one and for the next week you’re like “I really want another croissant!” This is because the croissant still appears on your taste buds. Luckily it’s easy to reduce those cravings by using a tongue scraper! It gets rid of the taste properly and removes the desire to eat it again so soon after.
A clever way to satisfy cravings for foods eaten by your ancestors or foods from your childhood is to eat a healthier version of your ancestral and childhood foods.
The body often craves foods in accordance with the season. In the spring, people crave detoxifying foods like leafy greens or citrus foods. In the summer, people crave cooling foods like fruit, raw foods, and ice cream, and in the fall people crave grounding foods like squash, onions, and nuts. During winter, many crave heat-producing foods like meat, oil, and fat. Cravings can also be associated with the holidays, for example foods like turkey and eggnog might be things we crave around Christmas time.
Give in to these cravings in a healthy way, it is what your body needs during these times of the year!
5. Dissatisfaction in life
Being dissatisfied with a relationship or having an inappropriate exercise routine (too much, too little, or the wrong kind), being bored, stressed, uninspired by a job, or lacking a spiritual practice can all cause emotional eating. Eating can be used as a substitute for entertainment or to fill a void.
Look into the different areas of your life and find out what you are actually hungry for! Is it chocolate because you have a deficit in magnesium or is it because something is missing from your life.
Food cravings can also arise to satisfy emotional needs, such as calming stress and reducing anxiety. For many of us, cravings kick into high gear when we're stressed or anxious. Carbohydrates boost our levels of the hormone serotonin, which has a calming effect.
Without even knowing it we crave fresh air, relaxation, meditation or yoga. Instead of taking the time to do these things, we reach for sugary and fatty foods, caffeine or cigarettes instead.
Try some breathing exercises, 10 minutes of yoga or just take a warm bath. Even a gentle walk can help reduce stress and this is better than the alternative, which actually puts more stress on our bodies.
You’re appetite is largely affected by hormones that fluctuate throughout the day. When women experience menstruation, pregnancy, or menopause, fluctuating testosterone and estrogen levels may cause unique cravings. Sleep deprivation can also disrupt the fluctuations and lead to poor appetite regulation and strong cravings.
Getting plenty of sleep helps to prevent these cravings! Women with a hormonal imbalance can give into cravings in a healthy way. If you crave chocolate, bake a sweet potato brownie and get all the nutrients you need at the same time! PS Registration for Bootcamp is open! Are you ready to crush your New Year's (re)Solutions?
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