I know we have all been through it, doing so well on the diet trying real hard but suddenly, you want some food, junk food. Your body tells you it is the right thing to do, your taste buds want satisfying, your eyes see it, your hands grab it, and then the junk is in the trunk! But why do we get these cravings? There must be an explanation behind it.
'Junk Food' by Normanno XXIII
Lets look at some of the reasons as to why we may crave it. First off, it is so readily available! Junk is everywhere, from processed cakes and delights in the work canteen, copious amounts of sugar by the shop counter just at perfect arms reach in order to not even require effort and adjustment in foot position to put into your trolley. It is so readily available that we have become too lazy to even prepare a piece of fruit, even such things like peeling a banana become an issue, let alone preparing a full on healthy meal from start to finish including the washing up!
It’s the thing to do in order to fit in, everyone else is doing it so by not complying with the norm you find yourself getting asked questions, ‘why on earth are you eating that?’ ‘you have Tupperware, you are so obsessed’ it is so much easier to just go with the flow, accept the social norm and just attend social gatherings which 9 times out of 10 involve food or nibbles, but why is it not cool to be healthy? Why can’t you prepare your food and have the nutrition to fuel your goals on hand 24/7? I am actually suggesting that junk food cravings are highly down to peer pressure, if your so called mate told you to jump off of a cliff you wouldn’t do it (if you would I think you need to reevaluate your decision making!) so why do you constantly accept sugary, artery clogging, processed, and just all round junk over and over just because you have been offered it, it is ok to say no, you can say no at the dinner table just as easily as you can say no to that workmate with the bag of toffees on the desk to the side of you. Why do we always offer sweets and not healthy food in our peer groups?
Media is more than aware of the cravings we get and how can we be blamed for craving junk when it is everywhere, on the back of magazines, billboards by the roadside, shop windows? It is something we cannot hide from. But we don’t actually crave the actual food, these signs show us that we crave the thought of eating these foods, because we see it so much, isn’t it when we do something over 30 times it becomes a habit? Why not shy away from the junk food indulging and let healthy eating over and over become your next habit? A habit you will not want to quit.
There is so much variation to junk foods, it does not get boring if you ask someone what healthy food looks like chances are they will say ‘green’ or ‘salad’ and will soon get bored of so called healthy eating, why can we not use our imaginations and show these people that there are lots of healthy alternatives, loads of combinations of healthy foods out there which allow us to live our lives to the full, become fighting fit and hit our goals. Think of the natural tastes the ‘real’ flavours of healthy foods have, when we consider the amount of artificial sweeteners included within junk also the artificial colours it is easy to see why we can believe that these foods taste so much better but when we look at the impact these foods can have it is obvious the choice of the future should be being healthy.
In the future I will look more into the science of cravings, things such as leptin, glycogen and insulin levels, the effects of tiredness on cravings. But for now we have opened up our eyes into just some of the reasons we crave junk foods on a day to day basis. As always if you would like any tailored training plans, specific to needs or diet requirements, fat loss, muscle gain, dairy free, gluten free and anything else give me a shout and we will be able to work something out specific to yourselves!