We all get food cravings! Often, cravings happen to be for our favorite unhealthy foods and we find ourselves fighting the urge to give in. Have you ever taken a minute to stop and think there might be an underlying cause within that craving? Your body knows what it needs and a strong craving for a certain food could very well be your body’s way of alerting you of a nutritional deficiency. So lets take a look and see what your food cravings are actually telling you!
I used to be addicted to salt, to the point where I would put it on everything including pizza, fruit, even in my coffee! Your body doesn’t have abnormal cravings, this was a clear sign my body needed Chloride and was craving Sodium, which I was not getting in the right places. The refined salt you find in industrial snacks (high sodium) leads to fluid retention, which can increase your bodies overall weight. To make up for the lack of chloride and sodium in your body, reach for healthier options such as celery, olives, tomato, kelp, or Himalayan sea salt.
There have been nights that I will dream about Pepsi and wake up with an insane craving for a carbonated drink. This is odd because besides I rarely drink Soda. If you ever wake up dreaming of Pepsi like I did, you could be very dehydrated. Chug some water. If you are still craving carbonated drinks, you may be lacking Calcium. Try raising your calcium intake by eating some broccoli or cheese.
If you suddenly have an urge for your favorite chocolate candy bar this could be related to an emotional need. Chocolate is metabolized to serotonin, which increases mood boosting hormones in the body. But if your craving chocolate more than what most would consider “normal”, your body could be longing for Magnesium, which is the mineral that gives energy to our body. Instead of chocolate, restore with other foods high in Magnesium like beans, nuts, seeds, leafy greens or fruit.
Carbohydrates are an essential part of our diet. But if trying to remain healthy, it is important to eat them in moderation and stay away from redefined carbs such as white bread and white rice. If you go cold turkey and throw carbs completely out of your diet, you are going to crave them and lose energy. Choose carbs full of fiber, high in protein, and high in Nitrogen such as whole grains, vegetables, fruits, beans and fish.
I used to wake up to the sound of my mom taking the ice tray out of our freezer and eating cube after cube over our kitchen sink. She was addicted to eating Ice and none of us ever really thought too much into it. When her energy levels got extremely low she found out she had an Iron deficiency referred to as anemia. Eating ice can be one sign of an iron deficiency but so can cravings for other foods high in iron like red meats. Cook yourself some steak and load up on some dark leafy greens to steer clear of an iron deficiency!
It is important to listen to our body and it’s cravings. Do you find yourself having sudden cravings for one of these five things? Could be your body’s way of asking for some nutrition!
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