Craving carbs, chocolate, or a big, fat steak? If it happens all the time, it may mean you’re lacking in nutrients, or struggling with a health issue. Six common cravings, and what they may tell you about your health:
Most of us love chocolate. But if your fudge-y thoughts border on obsession, you may be depressed. In one study, participants who screened positive for depression had significantly higher chocolate consumption than those who did not screen positive. Other studies have found either an improvement in mood state or a lessening of negative mood after eating chocolate. The effects aren’t just psychological: dark chocolate has been shown to increase levels of serotonin and dopamine, the brain’s feelgood neurotransmitters. And chocolate’s high magnesium content has been shown to boost mood and alleviate anxiety.
Choose dark chocolate—70 percent cacao or higher contains less sugar and more nutrients. Better yet, munch on raw cacao nibs; they’re pure chocolate, sans sugar. To be sure you’re getting enough magnesium, try a magnesium powder or supplement; the RDA is at least 400 mg/day for men and 310 mg/day for women. And if you suspect your cocoa consumption is linked to deeper issues, seek professional help.
2 POTATO CHIPS If you really can’t stop thinking about potato chip