Five Food Cravings and What They Might Mean
I was watching one of my nature shows the other day, and they mentioned a guy I'd never heard of called Steve Callahan. So I Googled the guy, and somehow it led me to this topic. Here's his deal. In 1982, a guy named Steven Callahan survived 76 days at sea by collecting rainwater and catching fish. And after a while, he started craving weird, gross parts of the fish . . . like the EYEBALLS.
It turned out it was because the eyes had certain nutrients in them that his body desperately Needed. And that same type of thing can happen in everyday life too. So that got me to thinking about it, and I did some extensive Googling, which of course led me down the rabbit hole and here to you. So now, you can learn from my experience with the internet, which never, ever lies. Here are five food cravings, and what they might mean.
1. If you crave carbs, it might mean you're low on the amino acid tryptophan.
Yes, the stuff that's in turkey, but it's in a lot of other stuff too, like milk and eggs. Your body uses tryptophan to help make serotonin, which boosts your mood. Carbs don't actually CONTAIN tryptophan, but they do raise your blood sugar. And researchers think that helps shuttle more tryptophan to your brain. Signs that you're not getting enough of it include bad moods, trouble sleeping, and anxiety.
2. If you crave ice, it might mean you're anemic and need iron.
Doctors aren't sure why, but it's a common symptom. Possibly because it helps relieve swelling in the mouth, which is also a symptom. But the BIG symptom of anemia is low energy. You can get more iron by eating red meat, spinach, broccoli, lentils, and fish.
3. If you crave red meat . . . again, you might need iron.
Or it might mean you're low on zinc, which helps keep your immune system strong. You can also get zinc in shellfish, lentils, spinach, pumpkin seeds, and cheese.
4. If you crave cheese, you might need more calcium.
Which doesn't just help you maintain strong bones and teeth. It also plays an important role in how your nerves and muscles work. And now that people are avoiding saturated fat, a lot of us aren't getting enough calcium, which you can also get in milk, yogurt, salmon, broccoli, and almonds. But to absorb it, your body also needs vitamin D, which your skin produces in response to the UV rays in sunlight. Which is one reason you should try to get at least 10 to 15 minutes of sun a day.
5. If you crave sweets, you might not be getting enough chromium, which helps insulin transfer glucose from your blood to your cells.
But eating sweets when your chromium levels are low actually makes things WORSE, because it tells your body to produce MORE insulin, which causes a sugar crash. So you should eat something else that has chromium instead, like beef, chicken, carrots, potatoes, broccoli, or eggs.
Look at all the work I did from the Googles! The internet taught me some stuff today.