Cravings/Addictions on a Raw Food
By Don Bennett, DAS
You might be tempted to think that
when you eat the healthiest of diets, and pay attention to getting
enough sleep, sunshine, exercise, etc., that you wouldn't be subject
to cravings and addictions. But this is not true.
I lump cravings and addictions together because
their definitions vary depending on who you're speaking to, but
the results are the same: you desire something that you know you
shouldn't be eating or doing.
Cravings for certain foods fall into two basic
categories: physiological and psychological. And
it's important to know which is the cause because the way to deal
with each type of craving is different. And if you assume your
cravings are for emotional reasons when they're not, obviously
your efforts to resolve them will likely be futile.
Physiological cravings can be caused by not getting
enough of certain nutrients that your body requires for proper
operation. This scenario would have been difficult many millennia
ago because of the way food was grown and the way we obtained
it. But today most of us don't eat food that grows naturally,
we eat food that was grown for us as a business. So if your food
comes from the agri-based food industry that grows for yield,
size, appearance, growth-rate, pest-resistance, shelf-life, and
sugar-content, but not for nutritional content,
you could be eating the most perfect diet, but the foods of that
diet will have you bumping up against some nutritional deficiencies
especially if you're not as active as you're designed to
be (you'll eat less food when inactive, and that means less overall
nutrients even if you are consuming an appropriate amount of calories
for your level of activity).
This first category of cravings is responsible
for raw food vegans desiring salty things. If your sodium requirements
are not being met, your body remembers what had been great sources
of sodium, and you'll get a craving for some of those salty snacks
you once ate (even though that form of sodium is not nearly as
bioavailable as the sodium we get from plants).
The other form that cravings take are emotional
in nature. Many people associate certain foods with good times,
and thus good feelings, and some "foods" like chocolate
can even make you feel loved. So it's no wonder that when you're
blue and down in the dumps, you desire certain "good mood
The physiological category of cravings is best
dealt with by bolstering your nutritional intake. I add some green
powder to my smoothies every day, and this does help a lot, and
it has for the many people I've counseled. Daily
Green Boost is my green powder of choice; and don't let
anyone tell you that something like this can't provide nutrition,
because this would demonstrate their lack of understanding and
a possible bias against nutritional supplements.
It's also important to know that there are some
"problematic" nutrients; ones that are not normally
provided by food, like D
And there are those that even the best green powder won't supply
enough of especially if you're already dealing with an insufficiency
is a good example. Looking at it from a "Supply and Demand"
perspective, the supply of iodine is extremely poor, and many
people's demand is higher than it would have been many millennia
ago due to environmental assaults, and if you have a deficiency,
this temporarily increases demand... a triple whammy, and why
so many people have sub-par functioning thyroids (which affects
mood and weight), and increased odds of getting cancer.
The second category emotional desires
can be dealt with by:
* Having a good social
life. See the fascinating article "Raw
Food and Addiction".
* Making sure you're eating
a nutritious diet (yes, a lack of enough of certain nutrients
can affect your hormones and thus your emotions). More on this
important issue here.
Causes Food Cravings
Food and Addiction
to list of articles