You're tired and hungry. You made a healthy protein-and-vegetables dinner, but... Unhappy? You've wanted chips all week.
What causes food cravings?
A few tips: Dr. Greenway says women are more likely to report food cravings than men, though most report more at night. This may prove that your brain views certain foods as rewards.
What drives your cravings
Classic cravings? Milk contains l-tryptophan, a mood-boosting, sleep-inducing compound. If you crave milk, cookies, or a milkshake, you may need some R&R.
When you diet, do you crave high-fat foods like pizza and ice cream? Once you start being disciplined, forbidden foods may call your name. A 2018 study found that dieting may increase cravings.
These stressors cause chronic stress, which raises adrenal hormone levels. High-calorie, high-fat comfort foods slow these hormones, says a PNAS study. If you're always drawn to the drive-thru, consider healthier ways to manage stress.
Craving burgers and fries?
Some people love chewing ice, even though it hurts their teeth. Science says craving cold drinks could be a sign of anaemia.
A 2016 study in the Journal of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners found that ice cravings indicate iron deficiency. Pica, the desire to eat non-food items like dirt and laundry soap, is linked to low iron levels.
If you crave chocolate, you may be one of many who consider it a mood-booster. Those who ate dark chocolate in a 24-hour period were 57% less likely to report depression symptoms than those who didn't.