Posted by Sharon Lin on Tuesday, August 13, 2013
Did you ever feel that serious craving for some specific food, but you can't seem to grasp exactly why? I'm not talking about that random need to eat chocolate chip cookies at 11PM or when you smell bacon and begin salivating. I'm talking about serious cravings, when your body begins to wrack and you get the shivers. If you know what I'm referring to, them I have good news for you. Those craving aren't a sign of mental illness after all! (Woohoo!)
According to Web MD, there's actually an explanation. So long as your cravings are not the "junk food addiction" sort as our poor friend in the photograph above, there might be health benefits to hailing to your body's demands. For instance, if you crave something salty, your body might be telling you it's missing minerals. Or if you get the need to eat some good, dark chocolate in the middle of the day, your body might need a refuel of antioxidants, which are present in dark chocolate.
Here are some good steps to take to curb those food cravings:
Your body is basically craving the magnesium and serotonin present in cocoa. By eating the least processed sort -- either cocoa powder or dark chocolate -- you can spare yourself those extra refined sugars and calories and still be set.
Try snacking on healthy foods rich in salts, such as seaweed, kelp powder, and celery. As a plus, stay away from table salt, which is too processed to satisfy anyway and will only get you hooked on and ready to eat more. Sea salt is a much better option for getting rid of that mineral deprivation.
Okay, if you are craving caffeine, you are definitely in a whole heap of trouble. Your body is addicted, and that's obviously not a good sign. What can you do about it? Try drinking decaffeinated green tea or coffee for the next few weeks. Hopefully, weaning yourself off the caffeine will actually end up doing your body more good.
According to all of the supporkers of the Atkins diet and those other "paleo diets," the reasons we crave carbs (donuts, bagels, muffin, oh my!) is because of their ability to spike our blood sugars and give us a quick boost of energy. Unfortunately, most of us don't need that extra boost. When the cravings come for "bad carbs" such as refined grains, stock up on whole grains and complex carbohydrates, which take longer to digest and thus keep you full longer. Remember, fueling those carby cravings will only make them stronger!
Anyway, I managed to control my cravings pretty well today. I found a frightening video on Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qG-4H6EqlZ4 It's called Fast Food Babies and it's about toddlers whose parents have raised them on a diet of fast food. It's scary to watch.
Breakfast: Greek yogurt and banana
Lunch: Pumpkin bun and vegetable chips with pico de gallo
Dinner: White rice, cauliflower in curry sauce, lamb
Snack: Carrot juice, pears, cantaloupe