People evolved to seek out high calorie foods, mainly fats and sugars, instinctively as part of the survival mechanism. Human breast milk is quite high in fats and sugars, 4 grams fat and 7 grams lactose per 100 ml.
Many of us experience food cravings, which are strong desires for some types of foods beyond normal hunger, especially when we are stressed. Detailed research has now begun to show the mechanisms behind craving but it is more complex and very often involves a degree of emotional association.
Very often it’s the case that eating food which quickly releases calories allows the body to feel “safe” – actually, it tells us that we shouldn’t stay in survival mode.
The most important problem in our modern world is that many processed foods use fats (or fat substitutes) with sweet and salty tastes in order to mask ingredients that lack nutrition. We can’t trust our instincts to tell us that we are consuming the right foods anymore. The dominance of these foods in the stores has contributed to losing our dietary balance and losing our ability to just go by instinct. Also, the intensive agriculture and the processing of the foods significantly reduce their mineral content.
When we were children, we were given sweets as a treat or a reward for behaving well, so consuming sweets will continue to have a peaceful effect. However, this conditioning can be hard to control in later life. Some of the foodstuffs we crave trigger the release of serotonin in our brain – stronger cravings have been connected to low serotonin levels in some persons. Attraction to some salty foods can also be due to dehydration since more salt leads to increased water retention.
Luckily there is an increasing knowledge for the composition of foods and we can have more faith on what we already know to make good choices. There are cases, when it could simply be that a lack of some important minerals leads to certain cravings even though the research is still limited in this area. The best approach to this news is to make sure that you keep up your mineral in take for good health. For that reason, we’ve provided this chart as a guide to what the body might be trying to tell us!
Carbon can be found in sweet fresh fruits but for some fruits this only applies if they are fully grown. Fruits like apple, avocado, kiwi, pear, mango, banana and papaya provide soluble carbon even if they are picked early.
Craving oily foods can be a sign that your body lacks calcium, that you are having an imbalanced diet and a sign for a call for more foods rich in fatty acids.
Some people’s favorite, chocolate,leads to a pleasurable release of endorphins and it also contains a high level of magnesium that we need in our diet, the reforelack of magnesium can increase a craving for chocolate. It has been proven that some kinds of physical activity can also reduce cravings.
It’s so fascinating to discover that the hippocampus, which is a part of the brain that is connected with our emotions, has a relatively high concentration of magnesium – which explains how chocolate cravings are a natural response to the necessity to balance our emotions!
Additional tip: Don’t forget to eat organic food for best nutritional benefits.