What Your Cravings Want You to Know

Find out what your body is trying to tell you.

What Your Cravings Want You to Know

By Reina Berger

If you've ever found yourself craving a cupcake like no tomorrow, it may seem easy to just write it off as a quirky love of sugar or an act of hunger. However, as registered dietitian Maya Feller explains, sometimes when it comes to cravings, our bodies are trying to send messages to us, letting us know which nutrients we need and which conditions we may have. If you want to know what your sugar obsession, salt fixation, or hunger for meat really mean, keep reading.


More: The 3-Day Plan to Shut Down Your Cravings

Sugar

A sugar craving can be due to many different factors that stem further than simply being easily pressured to order dessert by your friends or feeling bored at work and eyeing the box of donuts someone brought in. The brain-sugar connection runs deep, and these cravings can be a sign of a dip in glucose, something that occurs when you are hungry and your brain is urging you to get an energy fix. Since sugar is quickly absorbed and releases dopamine (a neurotransmitter that controls the reward and pleasure centers of the brain), your body can develop an addiction to sugar and constantly crave its next fix. Another reason you may be craving sugar is if you ate a meal heavy in carbohydrates and low in fat and protein, leading to a spike in glucose, or if you just have caffeine and desire something sweet right afterward.

More: Quiz: Are You Addicted to Sugar?

Will you ever feel comfortable in your own skin? That is, if you don't make an effort to protect it? Although 64% of adults do report wearing sunscreen when outside for prolonged periods of time, it turns out that only about 10% of people surveyed actually protect themselves daily, according to a recent review.

No matter what your skin tone is, unless you live in a cave with no sunlight, daily protection with either sunscreen, sunblock or protective clothing can not only protect you from developing sunburns (ouch!) but can significantly reduce your risk of developing skin cancer, particularly the deadliest type called melanoma. In addition, for those of you wanting to keep your youthful looks, daily sunscreen has been shown to reduce the development of wrinkles. A great teacher once told me that the best way to not have wrinkles is not to get them in the first place (think of how much money you can save on useless creams that claim to diminish wrinkles).

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