Have you ever experienced annoying food cravings that you can’t seem to shake? You aren’t alone. Most people experience food cravings, some even daily! These cravings have a wide range and can be attributed to either poor self-control or as a result of eliminating certain foods out of a diet (i.e. detoxing symptoms). But this isn’t always the case and you’ll see why.
The human body is so amazing (take a second here to thank your body for it’s hard work!). It’s an intricate system of balances and signals that help things function properly and keep things regulated. Food cravings are simply another way for the body to signal what it needs so we have the chance to fulfill that need.
How many times do you find yourselfcraving certain foods or sweets (ummm chocolate…)? Maybe you don’t realize when you are fighting or entertaining a craving, but I think most would agree, the struggle is real! How many times have you shoved that donut into your mouth or inhaled that plate of french fries? The only problem is that eating these foods doesn’t seem to end the cravings. Major bummer. At the very least we should be satisfied, but in reality we just get more ravenous for that thing.
Well, what’s to blame? Bad habits, poor discipline, faulting the “sugar tooth”?
The answer might surprise you...
Science has shown us that these cravings can come from vital mineral deficiencies in our bodies. This is good news, because when we acquire the minerals our bodies need from natural sources, we are also able to best absorb the nutrients that we require to function and feel well balanced.
So what do these cravings really mean?! Here are the top cravings paired with their mineral counterpart!
1. Hunger | H20
Water! Plain old water! Often times we think we are hungry, when really we are dehydrated. We then easily confuse thirst with hunger. Always drink a big glass of water when you feel a craving or intense hunger cravings come on, and then check in with your body after 20 minutes to see if you really are hungry.
If you find yourself craving caffeine or needing it before you can function in he morning, try switching to decaf, and then to coffee alternatives (likeTeccino, green tea, or herbal tea). Eat more whole foods and get quality sleep! Caffeine cravings can also be attributed to Adrenal Fatigue, so seek help from your naturopath, doctor, or health coach to help re-balance your adrenals.
3. Chocolate | Magnesium
Magnesium promotes relaxation, and helps aid in good digestion. Instead of caving by eating a whole chocolate bar, you can find excellent sources of magnesium in dark leafy greens, seeds and nuts, fish, legumes and blackstrap molasses. You can also get it in supplement form, we love Natural Vitality’sCalm- killer price onVitacost.com. THEN you can have a bite of dark chocolate (72%), it is a superfood after all.
4. Sugary foods | Chromium, Carbon, Phosphorus, Sulfur and Tryptophan
Chromium helps to regulate blood sugar levels, carbon is an element of the makeup of sugar, phosphorus helps the body produce energy (which is why we tend to lean on sugar when we are feeling tired), sulfur helps remove toxins (which our body is always working to do), tryptophan is a Serotonin (“feel good” hormone) regulator.
These important minerals can be found in animal proteins and vegetarian sources like from lentils, whole grains, black beans, cheese/dairy, and also from a variety of vegetables, like sweet potatoes and cruciferous veggies.
Also, consuming more healthy fats, more high-fiber foods, and probiotic rich foods, help to decrease hunger cravings, help you feel more satiated, keep your blood sugar regulated, and also help keep your gut thriving with good bacteria that aid in efficient digestion and absorption.
5. Refined Carbohydrates | Nitrogen
Dreaming you could carbo-load at every meal? You might be deficient in Nitrogen, an essential mineral found infresh fruits & veggies. Time to throw out those processed fruit cups and bite into a real apple.
6. Oily/ Fatty Foods | Calcium
Sometimes we just want that juicy hamburger and fries. If you feel this craving more often than not then up your intake of calcium! Sources of calcium dark leafy greens like spinach and kale, broccoli, white beans, and of course dairy, preferably organic and raw (if tolerated).
7. Salty foods | Chloride & Zinc
Add more fish, goat cheese, (real) sea salt, nuts and seeds to your diet! This should help bring balance back and remineralize your body with what it needs most.
Eat Well & Be Well,
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