This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Similarly, people whose blood sodium levels have been purposefully lowered, either through diuretics (water pills) or exercise, also generally report an increased preference for salty foods or drinks (Thus, in some cases, salt cravings can be caused by sodium deficiencies or low blood sodium levels. One study reports that men generally meet 66–84% of their recommended daily intake (RDI) for Moreover, there’s little evidence to support that men are more likely deficient in either sodium or protein than women. All rights reserved. 2. Fulfilling your cravings is believed to help your body meet its nutrient needs and correct the nutrient deficiency. They assume that when the body lacks a specific nutrient, it naturally craves foods that are rich in that nutrient.For instance, chocolate cravings are often blamed on low magnesium levels, whereas cravings for meat or cheese are often seen as a sign of low iron or calcium levels. This condition, known as pica, is often seen in children and pregnant women and may indicate anemia. B Vitamins. Vitamin C is an important nutrient that has a lot of benefits. The assumption behind the “nutrient deficiency” theory is that those with low intakes of certain nutrients are more likely to crave foods containing those nutrients (However, there is evidence that this is not always the case.One example is pregnancy, during which the baby’s development can double requirements of certain nutrients. The following arguments are the most compelling.According to research, a person’s cravings and their frequency are partly influenced by gender.For example, women seem to be up to twice as likely to experience food cravings as men (Women are also more likely to crave sweet foods, such as chocolate, whereas men are more likely to crave savory foods (Those who believe that nutrient deficiencies cause cravings often propose that chocolate cravings result from a magnesium deficiency, while savory foods are often linked to insufficient intakes of sodium or However, there is little evidence to support gender differences in the risk of deficiency for any of these nutrients. In some cases, cravings may reflect an insufficient intake of certain nutrients.One particular example is pica, a condition in which a person craves non-nutritive substances, such as ice, dirt, soil, laundry or cornstarch, among others.Pica is most common in pregnant women and children, and its exact cause is currently unknown. Thus, consuming regular, nutritious meals and staying well-hydrated may decrease the likelihood of cravings (In the event that a craving does appear, it could be useful to try identifying its trigger. Cravings are likely caused by factors other than nutrient deficiencies.They can be explained by the following physical, psychological and social motives: Cravings can be caused by a variety of physical, psychological or social cues that have nothing to do with nutrient deficiencies. Learn how to identify food cravings in your diet for better nutritional health. Similarly, participants put on low-fat diets during the same period reported fewer cravings for high-fat foods (In another study, very low-calorie liquid diets decreased the frequency of cravings overall (If cravings were truly caused by a low intake of certain nutrients, the opposite effect would be expected.Cravings are generally very specific and often not satisfied by eating anything other than the craved food.However, most people tend to crave high-carb, high-fat foods, rather than nutritious whole foods (Consequently, the craved foods are often not the best source of the nutrient commonly associated with the craving. For instance, it’d be more effective for those deficient in magnesium to also crave magnesium-rich nuts and beans, rather than chocolate alone ( The arguments above provide science-based evidence that nutrient deficiencies are often not the main cause of cravings. Individuals frequently experiencing cravings may want to try the following strategies to reduce them.For starters, skipping meals and not drinking enough water may lead to hunger and cravings. Our website services, content, and products are for informational purposes only. However, this is not always the case, and more research is needed before strong conclusions can be made. As we previously told you, a vitamin B deficiency is serious. © 2005-2020 Healthline Media a Red Ventures Company. Moreover, it could be argued that people with nutrient deficiencies would benefit from craving a wider variety of foods containing the required nutrient, rather than a single source.

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