Thursday, February 2, 2012

Curb your Cravings

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Food cravings are triggered in our brain by chemical reactions. These chemicals include serotonin, endorphins, galanin and NPY(neuropeptide-Y)--- they make us happy or miserable. They also trigger cravings for sweet or fat-rich creamy food.

Women may reach for comfort foods to improve negative mood, but we often feel guilty afterwards for giving in to the craving. Men relate cravings to relaxation and a state of happiness and satisfaction.

Researchers believe that the following cravings could mean you are feeling these moods:

1. Meat - angry
2. Sweets - depression
3. Ice cream - anxious
4. Salty - stress
5. Pasta - loneliness or sexual frustration

CHOCOLATE is the most craved food because it contains phenylalanine which is an amino acid that raises the body's endorphins ----- our natural antidepressants and makes us feel pleasure. It raises the serotonin level which improves our gloomy mood and the creamy texture satisfies our need for fat.



What to do about food cravings?

Rule #1 - Take care of the 4 brain centers that create our cravings
  • food
  • water
  • sex
  • sleep
If you're not getting enough, or any at all of any of those 4 things ---- you're going to have more cravings, mostly for food because food can easily and quickly modify our moods.

Rule #2 - Listen to your body: Your carvings are telling you something.

Sweets - Low serotonin or NPY

Go get a cookie or a slice of pie - don't feel guilty about it. Depriving yourself of a food can increase cravings for that food.

Rule #3 - Don't try to use will power to overcome a chemical reaction - it won't work in the long range. It only gets worse and results in bingeing.


Rule #4 - Don't go without food for more than 4 hours.

Cravings usually creep up around 3-6 pm especially if you've skipped breakfast or lunch and/or your blood sugar is low. Satisfy your craving with a small amount of the craved food to avoid bingeing.


So there's 3 days before the Super Bowl, don't feel guilty for giving in to your cravings....
just don't go overboard!



1 comment:

  1. Great Blogs. I am a very Angry person I guess as I always crave meats.. This post made me real hungry... Yummy.

    Sharon

    ReplyDelete

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