Your body has a language it uses to express its feelings; its deficiencies, injuries, obstructions, etc. Hunger is a cue our body gives when it screams for energy to perform normal bodily functions. Cravings are also a sign emitted by the body, reflecting its temptation for something specific.
Food cravings are an indication of different factors.
These are usually tied to nutritional deficiencies, but according to scientific research, these cravings could indicate an emotional need as well. The brain region that plays a role in memory and pleasure also develops these strong desires to eat a particular food. Hormonal fluctuations, such as during pregnancy or menstruation, could lead to food cravings. An imbalance of leptin and serotonin is usually responsible for food cravings.
A solution to ward off these feelings is to extinguish them with the fuel they are asking for. But what about unhealthy cravings? Fighting off these cravings is usually out of the question due to the intense urge, but replacing them with healthy substitutes could be a wise choice. For this, it is essential to know which nutrients your body is craving.
Also, drinking enough water can stop you from indulging in too much unhealthy food.
Chronic stress is also linked to food cravings and increased BMI without fulfilling those cravings. Stress may also lead to emotional eating and a desire for comfort food, which calls for stress reduction.
Craving fatty foods indicates a deficiency of specific vitamins.
The deficiency of fat-soluble vitamins, i.e., vitamins A, D, E, and K, makes your body crave fat. These vitamins play an essential role in several vital functions of our body, including the maintenance of blood sugar levels, storage and utilization of calcium. Most importantly, it supports our immune function.
Good fats are naturally present in whole foods and animal products, while processed food contains trans-fat and hydrogenated oils.
This longing for fried and oily foods could mean you are running low on calcium. You can restock your calcium through green leafy vegetables, legumes, and sesame seeds.
Our body craves these processed fatty foods, which do not repair the physiological issue and thus don’t satisfy the craving.
Incorporating good fats into our meals can alleviate this condition.
Intake of whole fats can fix the underlying issue. The quantity depends on how much is needed by your body. Thus, you can take some good fat with your meal and see how your body reacts. Some fat sources include avocados, flax seeds, coconut oil, raw nuts and seeds, oily fish, and fat from animal sources.
Eating small random meals throughout the day may also help to quench this hunger.
Barbara Rolls, a researcher, found that women who consumed low calorie small meals had fewer cravings than those eating regular meals.
Craving salty food might be a signal for protein deficiency.
It is common to have a late-night craving for chips, crackers, or French fries with an extra sprinkle of salt. Yearning for salty food may also hint at anger, frustration, or stress.
Also, when your body calls for salty food, it may warn you about sodium deficiency, which your body constantly loses through urine, sweat, or tears. You can add unrefined salt to your diet to replenish your sodium supply.
Curb your craving with protein and mineral-rich food.
Avoid prepackaged snacks and opt for whole foods. Apart from this, salt enables our taste buds to enjoy the flavor. To combat this craving, we can add spices and herbs to our food and trick our receptors into achieving the same deliciousness in our meals.
Restrained eating, as in dieting, also correlates with food cravings. That is why it is suggested to make healthier choices so you don’t become nutritionally deprived.
From time to time, food cravings are very common, and nothing is wrong with them. Satisfying these urges through unhealthy choices is.
Eat proper, nutritionally dense meals to avoid hunger or cravings at uncertain hours. Also, plan your meals to avoid spontaneity.
Furthermore, to know what you should and shouldn’t eat,
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