8 Hidden Reasons For Your Cravings
When it comes to cravings, we can often see them as a weakness. I hear this from clients and have experienced it myself. “I just crave a coke.” “I can’t stop at eating one cookie.”
When I am coaching clients, I have them think through the what and why of their cravings. Cravings are not weakness, but in fact are meant to assist us in maintaining balance in our body. They are very important to be aware of.
Our bodies are amazing! They regulate at 98. 6 temperature, the heart keeps beating, lungs breath and it repairs wounds. I could go on and on. There are so many things that our bodies do for us that we never have to think about. When a craving happens, it is our body telling us something about what it needs or doesn’t need to maintain a continued balance for healing and thriving.
Here are 8 things that might be causing your cravings. Take some time and think about these things the next time you have a craving. You just might be needing something besides that Coke!
1. Lack of Primary Food
When I am coaching, I divide food into 2 categories. Primary and Secondary Foods. Primary food has to do with our relationships, spirituality, exercise or stress levels. Some cravings could lead to emotional eating or create substitute eating to entertain or fill the void of a primary food. How are your relationships with others? Do you have inappropriate exercise- too little, too much or not the right kind? Are you bored or stressed? Does your career lack inspiration? Do you lack truth regarding your spirituality? All of these things can cause us to crave and reach for food when we truly need to look at our primary foods and make some adjustments.
How is your water intake? We are most dehydrated when we wake up in the morning, yet we usually reach for caffeine to satisfy our morning cravings. Dehydration can lead to mild hunger. When we are craving food, our bodies just might need water instead. And excess water can cause cravings as well. I recommend drinking at least 50% of your body weight in ounces. For example, If my client weighs 140 lbs then I would recommend they drink 70 oz of water daily to maintain hydration for their body. I often recommend clients to drink 8 oz of water when they are craving sugar or food during the middle of the day. You might just find that water, not food is what your body needed.
3. Food Balance
Foods can be both expansive or contractive in how they react with our body. If ones food routine has more sugar involved, then one might find themselves craving meat. Or if someone is eating lots of raw foods, they might find that they crave overly cooked foods that are almost dehydrated in its form. And vic versa. If you are wanting to shift your foods, try eating foods with opposite qualities and see if it helps produce the cravings you are looking for.
Often our bodies will crave foods that we simply ate during our childhood or from our ancestry background. As these types of cravings come about, let it remind you of your own story and culture and try eating healthy versions of your childhood foods.
We often crave things along with new seasons. Even though we often have all seasonal foods at our demand, our bodies don’t necessarily need strawberries all year round! You may find that your body craves things with new seasons. In the Spring, detoxifying foods like green leafy veggies and citrus may have your mouth watering. In the Summer, you might find you desire food that is more cooling to the body like ice cream, watermelon or raw veggies. In the Fall and Winter, warmer and hotter foods and drinks are often craved. Even the holidays can cause cravings to shift.
6. Lack of Nutrients
In America, we are overfed and undernourished people. Add dehydration and we are walking around sick and tired. Often inadequate nutrients can lead us to odd cravings. A lack in minerals can lead to salty cravings. Often our lack of nutrition produces cravings for non-nutritional forms of energy like caffeine. I help my clients break this down and it is amazing what happens when they begin to put nutrients back in their bodies!
Menstruation, pregnancy, menopause, fluctuating testosterone and estrogen levels may cause unique cravings. As women we can often just “accept” this as normal, but cravings with hormonal causes are something to be addressed with proper nutrition or seek advice from a professional to help regulate the hormones.
8. Blood Sugar
Strong mood swings can happen with low blood sugar. Too often we turn again to non-nutritional foods to give us a quick high. Our body may be needing quality fat, but we turn to a candy bar instead. This happens with diabetes or pre-diabetes clients. It is so important when dealing with blood sugar to support your body with quality nutrition.
In the short term, giving our bodies non-nutritional foods may make us feel better, but as we break down reasons for our cravings, giving our bodies what they need produces long lasting results that you will crave more of!
What do you crave and why? Need help with this? CLICK HERE