..where little means a lot


Food Cravings - to Indulge or not to Indulge

In a survey conducted it was noted that 40% of women craved sweets, particularly ice-cream, 33% salty, greasy treats like chips, 17% spicy food and a meager 10% felt like healthy foods such as citrus fruits. While the story behind cravings is not known, many believe that nutrient deficiency drives us to eat what our body lacks. Chocolate isn't rich in vitamin B, but a craving for it is said to be due to a lack in this vitamin. In a similar vein there is no link between iron and craving for non food items such as clay, but pica is caused by iron deficiency. Most experts believe that craving, just like aversion, is largely influenced by hormones. Hormonal changes determine what we want to eat to a great extent.

Depending on what you crave, you can indulge a little or a lot. If you crave for yogurt, fruit shakes or a bowl of cereal then eat to your heart's content. On the other hand if you wish to indulge in rich fatty foods then compensate with some exercise if you are at all keen on losing the kilos after childbirth. While it is ok to give in to your cravings in small proportions or once in a while, do it .

  • Only when the craving hits hard and nothing else will do
  • Only when you have filled up on something else otherwise you will over-indulge
  • Only when you have had your breakfast on that day as food cravings intensify on days you miss your first meal of the day.

A little trick you can practice is to give a 20 min gap. Eat a small portion of food you crave and wait 20 min. The craving goes away somewhat. If it does not, eat another small portion and wait another 20 min. Doing this can cut the craved food by half and in turn half the calories as well. You can also satisfy your craving by substituting it with a healthy option e.g. instead of ice cream eat fruit.

Finally understand what is it about your craving that's making it irresistible and with that understanding you will be able to make the substitution for a low calorie, healthier food more easily.

Your Craving Try Eating
Ice cream Non fat frozen yogurt
Cola 2 pounds
Doughnuts / pastry Whole grain bagel
Cakes Low fat banana bread
Sugar coated cereal Whole grain cereal with brown sugar
Potato chips Baked low sodium chips, pretzels or popcorn
Sour cream No-fat sour cream or nonfat plain yogurt flavored with herbs
Canned fruits in heavy syrup Fresh fruit, fruit packed in water or juice
Whipped cream Ice-cold no fat milk whipped with a blender
Sundae toppings Fresh berries or bananas


Note: If you crave for non food items such as wood, clay etc. do not give in to your cravings and see your doctor immediately.

Related Article of Food Cravings - to Indulge or not to Indulge

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