Cravings for unhealthy food can strike at the worst of times. Sugar, fats, and oils can be especially tempting and seem justifiable when your having a craving attack, but is it what your body really needs? I’ve heard from many people the advice to eat what you want because that’s your body telling you that it needs the nutrients from that specific food. The interesting thing is you can calm these cravings for unhealthy food by replacing it with food that is much better for your body. According to Elaine Magee, from webMD, these cravings are in fact just in our head. Cravings come from a specific part of the brain and relate to nutrients not specific foods needed. Here are some great substitutes you can eat in place of unhealthy foods.
Chocolate has a large reputation as being one of the most commonly craved foods, however, this can come from a low level of magnesium. Try eating seeds, nuts, veggies, or fruits to help cut the cravings for this sugary snack.
Sugary Food & Candy
If you crave candy constantly you may be low in five or more areas of nutrition. I noticed that once I balanced my diet I had almost no need to eat candy. Instead of indulging in that candy bar or hard candy try these methods for satisfying that sweet tooth. Some of the nutrients needed and alternatives include:
- Chromium- Try eating broccoli, grapes, cheese, or chicken to satisfy these cravings.
- Carbon- A wide variety of fresh fruits like apples or pears will satisfy your body’s need for carbon.
- Phosphorous- Phosphorus can be found in chicken, beef, fatty fish, and eggs. You can also get a boost from milk, nuts, veggies, or grains.
- Sulphur- Sugary foods could also mean that your body needs sulphur. Try eating some cranberries, horseradish, cabbage, or cauliflower to stop the craving.
- Tryptophan- This is the chemical that makes you sleepy after eating turkey, but it may also cause your craving for sugary foods. Instead eat cheese, raisins, sweet potatoes, or spinach for a healthier alternative.
Carbohydrates (Bread, Pasta,French Fries)
The craving for anything that is high in carbs could be a deficiency in your nitrogen levels. To battle the need to indulge in diet wrecking carbs try eating foods high in protein instead. Some of these can include fatty fish, nuts, beans, or seeds. Spinach, lettuce, and sausage will also satisfy this craving without ruining your waistline with carbs.
If you’ve been craving particularly oily food lately then your body may be lacking the proper levels of calcium. Instead of loading yourself with unneeded fats try drinking organic milk, pure cheese, or any green leafy vegetable for a healthy alternative.
One that I battle with constantly is salty foods. Daily I have to suppress my cravings so that I don’t go over my daily limit. This can be caused by the lack of chloride or silicon in the body. Try eating fatty fish, goat milk, cashews, or unsalted nuts to give yourself the boost you need.
Cravings will ruin a diet or workout plan faster than anything else. Now that I regularly stick to these substitutes and a balanced diet mine have almost completely stopped. If you suffer from cravings for unhealthy food try these alternatives to keep yourself happy and healthy.
webMD- The Facts About Cravings
Food Craving Food Institute- Physical Craving and Food Addiction: A Scientific Review
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Surprisingly Healthy Common Spices
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