Help! I want chocolate!
Food cravings are one way our bodies communicate with us. So before you conclude that a craving for salty foods or chocolate is “all in your head,” think about what they might actually be telling you.
Easing chocolate cravings
We talked about cravings for salty foods in a previous post. But what can chocolate cravings tell you?
When my clients tell me they can’t stay away from chocolate, I’ve found that low magnesium can sometimes be the culprit. Constipation is another symptom of low magnesium, so if you’ve got chocolate cravings as well as constipation, ask your doctor to check magnesium levels.
My chocolate cravings are often strongest right before my period, so I supplement with 250 or 500 mg of magnesium before bed during those days and it really curbs my cravings.
You can also add more magnesium-rich foods to your diet:
- Dark greens: Spinach, kale, Swiss chard
- Pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, almonds and cashews
- White beans, black-eyed peas, lentils
- Quinoa, brown rice
Chocolate is also endorphin supported — it gives us that rush of hormones. But you can get the same effect by focusing on toxin release. Try dry brushing or a sauna for example.
Vasodilator tricks can also help: Add spices to your foods, especially cayenne and jalapeno.
A great non-food vasodilator is the wet sock treatment we discussed here. This is great for opening up the nasal passages, lungs, and chest.
Food cravings can indicate mineral imbalance
In general, if you are finding yourself fixating on certain foods or flavors, that might indicate that your body’s pH balance is off.
- Check your body’s pH. Use simple urine test strips for this. Your morning urine often tests a little acidic, about 6.0. But a couple of hours later, you should test right around 6.8. That’s the sweet spot. If you’re testing over 7.2, your body is too alkaline and is releasing minerals from the body. If you’re below 6.8, really load up on alkalizing veggies. If you’re over 7.2, cut back to balance yourself out.
- Eat lots of lemon and lime. These contain lots of micronutrients, and can help balance pH.
- Drink 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar in 8 ounces of water. Apple cider vinegar is a wonderful alkalizer.
- Take a hot bath with baking soda dissolved in the both. Baking soda can act as a topical detoxifier and work to balance minerals too.
Give in a little
If you just can’t shake a craving, find a way to give in — a little bit. I love chocolate-flavored stevia drops. A few drops in my coffee substitute satisfies my cravings. You can also try cacao powder. Dissolve it in hot water or almond milk, add a little stevia and you have a quick hot chocolate-type drink.