Food Cravings and What They Mean

EVERYONE falls victim to food cravings. It makes no sense, a craving can start with a feeling of wanting a certain food until it turns into a full blown nagging need - insatiable until you give in.

The best way to get control over a craving is to indulge in it and treat yourself. Here are some common food cravings, explained


Burgers are loaded with iron, protein, and zinc. Iron and zinc deficiencies are all too common, especially for women. If you're craving a burger, you might just need a plate of protein and carbs - especially if you've been expending a lot of energy lately.


Candy is filled with sugar. If you're feeling sluggish, tired, or weak along with your candy craving you may want to think about your blood sugar. If your glucose levels are low your body is looking for the quickest energy supplement available - sugar. 


Cheese is a VERY crave worthy food. There is nothing better that a melty cheesy pizza, a major trigger for intense cravings. Cheese is a fatty food, and that's not inherently bad. In fact, full fat cheese is actually healthier because it's less processed. If you're craving cheese, you may not be getting enough fats in your every day diet. You may also be needing some Vitamin D - there is a reason that comfort foods are served more often in the fall and winter. 


Chinese food cravings are so intense and common that there are whole forums dedicated to General Tso's chicken! Chinese food is incredibly flavorful and sodium cravings are common, especially if you're dehydrated.


Chocolate makes you happier, it's science. It has mood elevating compounds shown to make you feel better. Reach for some if you're bored, unhappy, or bummed for some reason.


Fries are like the bodies ultimate energy source. They're a fried, crispy plate of carbs and fats - and they're insanely addicting.

Your body knows that a plate of those babies are going to give you long lasting energy, so if you're sleep deprived, overworked - reach for some! Additionally, if you've let yourself go hungry for a length of time your body is more likely to crave this type of carb.


There's actually a weird psychology behind these cravings for a cold crunch, and there's a name for it, too — pagophagia. It's often a sign of a psychological upset such as stress, obsessive compulsive disorder, or a developmental disorder. If the latter two don't apply, you could just be stressed out and in need of an outlet.

Alternatively, ice cravings could be indicative of an iron deficiency. Otherwise known as anemia, iron deficiency is very common and can be remedied either with iron supplements or with iron-filled foods like spinach or red meat.


Though this seems counter-intuitive, the cool, creamy bites of ice cream could be a sign of stomach upset or trouble digesting. Ever finish a large, dense meal only to crave the ice cream waiting in the freezer? The dessert acts as neutralizer for heartburn and stomach acidity — so eating it could do your digestion a favor.


This crunchy snack is high in sodium, flavor, and probiotics. So if you're dying to chow down on a gherkin, you could be in need of any one of these things. The sodium craving could be a warning sign of dehydration — when you eat more sodium and then drink water, you're better able to absorb it. Pickles are great for your gut health and digestion, too.


Soda, especially diet soda, is loaded with chemicals. Unlike the other normal foods on this list, soda is laden with chemicals that could be triggering your craving. The sweeter-than-sugar sweeteners and toxic preservatives could contribute to a growing urge for the dehydrating drink. The caffeine, especially, contributes to the addictive feel of a can of cola. So if you're craving soda, the reason is simple — it's because you've developed a habit for drinking soda.


Ok, we know spicy food is hot — but if you're craving it, you might be, too. Counterintuitively, spicy food cools you down once you eat it. You sweat more, and the sweat evaporating off of your skin has a cooling effect. That explains why you're craving heat in the heat.

Otherwise, though, it's likely you're having trouble with your metabolism in some way, shape, or form. This could come from a thyroid imbalance or it could be from one too many sugary snacks — but regardless, spicy food gives your metabolism the jolt to life it's been craving. Eating something with spice has a full-body effect, even releasing endorphins. It's possible your body just needed to feel the rush.

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