What Do Our Food Cravings Mean

February 2015, Xtend-Life Expert

Summary

Hunger and cravings are two different sensations. Hunger serves a more basic need, signalling our brain that it’s time to eat. On the other hand, cravings are something more complicated, with experts saying that it is the body’s way of telling us that something is missing.

Have you ever wanted a chocolate cupcake so badly, you didn’t catch a single word during that meeting just salivating over it? Or a burger so desperately, you were willing to go a long way out of your way just to make sure you got it?

Hunger and cravings are two different sensations. By sending certain messages to the brain, our body manages to maintain an overall equilibrium – without sorely lacking in a particular nutrient.

So is this the secret to reducing our cravings? Potentially so! If we were getting all the nutrients we need, perhaps we would have less cravings for particular foods. Chocolate is probably the top on my list of cravings and science explains why.

Fatty, sugary foods release chemicals called opioids into our bloodstream, and these bind to receptors in our brains giving us feelings of pleasure. But at the core of this craving is a potential lack of magnesium, which can be found in raw nuts, seeds and fruit – which in combination are both fatty and sweet.

Let’s breakdown other cravings you may have to find out what our body really needs.

1. Craving Sugar?

This may mean that your body needs chromium, carbon, phosphorous or tryptophan.  Get these by filling up on chicken, broccoli, nuts, fresh fruit and sweet potatoes. Craving sugar is also your body’s way of letting you know it is tired and needs energy. Try adding more hours to your sleep or taking naps when you can to refuel and recharge. For a natural energy boost, try our Natural Energy supplement with New Zealand Bee Pollen.

2. Craving Coffee?

Caffeine is another way for your body to get energy fast. Instead of opting for your daily mug of caffeine, try our Zupafood ELITE which is packed full of ‘super-fruit’ goodness and natural green tea for energy. This is a great way to get energized without feeling buzzed out or reliant on an outside energy source.

3. Craving Salt?

This means your body may need chloride, which is essential in order for your body to maintain healthy digestion and keep your electrolyte levels in check.  Avoid super salty junk food and opt for yoghurt or fish instead. Chloride is also found in celery, olives, tomatoes and kelp.

4. Craving Bread?

This may mean that your body needs nitrogen, which is found in high-protein foods like fish, meat, nuts and beans. Have a handful of almonds or some bean salad.

5. Craving Cheese?

This may mean your body needs essential fatty acids. These fatty acids are found in Omega-3 and are beneficial for our eyes, skin, hair and vital organs. Omega-3 is found in flax oil, chia seeds and walnuts; but the best source of Omega-3 is fish oil. Try our Omega-3/DHA Fish Oil which is 30% DHA from tuna and hoki fish oil of the highest quality.

6. Craving Soda?

It means that you need more calcium. While calcium is commonly known to be found in in dairy products, other sources of calcium are much better.  These include broccoli, kale, sesame seeds, eggs and beans. Calcium is particularly essential for anyone over the age of 40 years to strengthen bones and reduce the risk of osteoporosis and bone fractures. Try our Bone-Support, which is full of Okinawan above-sea coral calcium and natural Vitamin D3 for enhanced support.  This is a great source of calcium and it is harvested with almost no environmental impact.

While we are on the topic of cravings, another point I would like to make is that reverse-psychology plays a factor too, and that is why we AREN’T promoting a no-sugar diet. Restricting yourself completely of something just makes you want it more! The trick is everything in moderation.

In an ideal world, we would be able to get all these essential nutrients from a balanced diet. Unfortunately, due to soil depletions and environmental factors today, this is sadly not the case. That is why it is so important to supplement your diet and lifestyle with a potent arsenal to make up for what we are lacking. Our Core Wellness Activators consist of our Total Balance, Omega-3 and Kiwi-Klenz – equipping you with all the essentials you need for overall health and wellness. Let’s kiss our cravings goodbye!

References:

  1. http://www.nutritionalwellness.com/nutrition/vitamins/c/chloride.php
  2. http://natureworksbest.com/naturopathy-works/food-cravings/
  3. http://foodaddictioninstitute.org/scientific-research/physical-craving-and-food-addiction-a-scientific-review/
  4. http://journals.cambridge.org/download.php?file=%2FPNS%2FPNS66_02%2FS0029665107005502a.pdf&code=a343319395921666892e95a86818a91c

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