How it works: why we can not resist the chocolate and fast food

Do not make food kultaMy experience cravings for favorite foods, to that to which are accustomed to, whether it's chocolate, cheese or fast food. Why is this happening? Veronica Greenwood tried to look into the matter.

In certain situations, there is nothing better than instant noodles, Top Ramen broth flooded with beef flavor. At least for me. I grew up on this noodles. You probably also have their gastronomic predilections - a craving for comfort food for you, which you think when you come back from work on the subway, or walking slowly go home in anticipation of dinner.

But we do not always want to eat it, the taste of which is familiar to us. It is said that pregnant women sometimes want to eat is extremely unlikely combination of products - from ice cream to strawberry pickles tuna.

But some of our eating habits is especially intense. Maybe some people think is correct, so that our body gives us signals about what he lacks at the moment?

No, it is not. Eva Camps, professor of psychology at the University of Adelaide, Australia, explains that, despite attempts to link cravings for certain foods to a lack of nutrients, "I need this chocolate for biological reasons!" - This assumption is wrong.

One of the most common explanations for the craving for chocolate, for example, is that our bodies are deficient in magnesium, the lack of which can make chocolate. But many other products, at least spinach contain more magnesium than chocolate. "Oddly enough, for some reason people do not want spinach" - she said.

Hormonal faktorEst set of rational explanation for this phenomenon. But the craving for certain foods is strongly associated with emotions and external signals that trigger memories. At the same time the hunger certainly provokes a thrust, yet it has more of a psychological than physiological character. "When we are sad, anxious, bored, lonely, or we experience stress, our state can provide the impetus for the emergence of traction," - said Camps.

"Comfortable" Food is also not explain this attraction, although we often want to precisely those foods that had previously consumed. But we also usually want the fact that just seen, i.e. any products appearing in our field of vision. If the cupcakes in your office there in the middle of the day, the fact that you just had lunch, it does not matter. You still want the cake.

This also involved in our physiology. According to statistics, women tend to talk about a much greater cravings for certain products before the critical days, there is also the thrust of pregnant women, suggesting that these particular desires can affect hormonal component. But if hormones play a really major role or is it just noise neurons Camps can not say.

Whatever the origin, the thrust can be extremely intrusive. Experiments have shown that it degrades solution cognitive tasks. James Uonnerton suffering from synesthesia (a neurological disorder which manifests itself in feelings mixed perception of the world) said that constantly distracted by the desire to eat certain foods. He wants meat pie so often that, despite the fact that he does not like him, is forced to keep the cake in his refrigerator in order not to go crazy.

Visual podskazkiChtoby desire to understand the process and how you can eliminate cravings, Kemps and Marika Tiggemann her colleague learned that people feel. They asked 130 people to recall their cravings for certain foods and describe the feelings they experienced, representing an object of desire.

Camps and Tiggemann found that people do not think about the sounds and tactile sensations, but the visual images play an important role, along with imaginative flavors and aromas.

As it turned out, the dreams of a rainbow or rosary may reduce the intensity of thrust. Another team found that it is possible to eliminate the thrust test when playing Tetris. Image of the visualization does not have to be static. Watching TV also works, says Camps. She and her colleagues now plan to determine whether they can distract people even before thirst develops and firmly rooted in the consciousness.

If the draft is out of control and become a constant companion in your day is, of course, can play havoc with your health, since because of it you can consume extra calories. (You might want to play some Tetris while in your office there muffins.)

But if the thrust is intermittent, Camps gives amazing advice. "Actually better afford to eat a piece, - she says. - Link will be stronger if you're fixated on it ยป.



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