Food Cravings. They often appear out of nowhere and sometimes they're so intense, they won't go away until you give in.
Anyone who really knows me, knows how much I love my pickles. And sauerkraut. Kimchi. Anything fermented in salty brine. I eat those types of foods often because I enjoy them and I know they're good for me. There are times, however, when I crave them so badly, I cannot rest until I have them.
I've always been interested in the driving force behind food cravings. It's huge part of the work I do with clients in my private practice. The different types of foods we crave, even weird cravings for pickles or sauerkraut, says a lot about us.
I know when I begin to really crave the fermented stuff - not just want it, but HAVE TO HAVE IT, it's most likely because I've been indulging in foods that are upsetting the delicate balance of my gut flora - the complex community of microorganisms that live in my digestive tract. Fermented foods are rich in probiotics, which are proven to help restore that balance so my whole body can function at its best. When I eat foods that mess with all the good bacteria floating around in my gut, I feel tired, grouchy, achy and bloated. And that's when I get intense cravings. My body's way of telling me to pay attention and give it what it needs!
My particular craving for fermented foods is what I consider a good craving. It's to balance out the bad. 99.9% of the time, my diet is super healthy, but I am human after all and there are times when I indulge in things that are not so good for me. Usually, it's bread and pasta. Or a couple of cocktails. Not to say those things are necessarily bad, but my body doesn't really like them.
What if your diet is mostly unhealthy? Maybe you exist on the Standard American Diet: too much meat and animal products, crappy carbs made from white flour and white sugar, processed foods that come in boxes, bags and cans, fast food, sugary drinks and very little fruits and vegetables? And then out of nowhere, you have an intense desire for a nice, crisp, fresh salad? Or perhaps you had a few days of eating nothing but junk food and now you can't stop obsessing over a salad. Or maybe a slice of red, ripe watermelon. To the point where you're almost drooling just thinking about it? That's your body begging you to give it something nutritious.
Here's another thing about your cravings. Healthy or unhealthy; more often than not, they're a sign of a deeper issue you probably need to pay attention to, as well. Something physical? Perhaps, but it can also be emotional or even spiritual.
How do I know this? From experience. If everything was a-okay with me, I wouldn't be eating so much of the offending foods that are upsetting my gut flora to the point of extreme cravings for pickles, sauerkraut or kimchi in the first place.
There's something going on that's upsetting the delicate balance of my life.
I know this might sound a little crazy, but your body, mind and spirit will send you all kinds of signs and signals to let you know what they need. You just need to learn to pay attention. And if you're listening, you'll begin to notice exactly when those cravings kick in. Even your intense cravings for chocolate. You're getting 'em for a reason!
The same goes for when you're craving ice cream. Cake. Cookies. Salty snacks like pretzels or chips. Macaroni and cheese. And yes, even cravings for the good stuff, like broccoli. You don't just want it. You have to have it!
Food is wonderful. It nourishes your body and gives you energy. Certain foods soothe and comfort you. And sometimes, food is a replacement for love. Discovering more about the foods you crave is truly fascinating and liberating. Identifying and understanding your cravings is the key to achieving and maintaining good health and wellness and especially if you want to release excess weight permanently. I could go on and on because I love talking about this stuff, but I won't. Instead, I will give you this to think about:
A craving isn't just a physical desire for a certain food or treat simply because it tastes good. It's more complex than that because you are a complex being with a body, mind and spirit. Very often, a craving is an invitation to take a peek at what's going on deep within your heart and soul.
If this sounds interesting or resonates with you on some level, get in touch. We can explore some of your food cravings together and come up with ways to restore the delicate balance in your body and your life.
Yours in Good Health,