Credits: Stocksnap

Do you always get the munchies and can’t explain why? Don’t worry; it’s not as uncommon as you think. In fact, there are several physical and psychological reasons behind these guilty pleasures. WebMD features interesting findings that explore cravings, and it isn’t about nutrient deficiency at all, but a reflection of how your body mind works.

1. Gender
If you suddenly get a hankering for ice cream and chocolate, reasoning that it’s because you’re a girl isn’t an excuse, but a scientific fact. Women are more inclined to snack on food that doesn’t need much preparation to cut back on clean-up time. On the other hand, men are more likely to look for savory meals such as pizza and soup, as these remind them of the care of their mothers or wives.

2. Boredom
As the saying goes, “an idle mind is the devil’s playground.” Being bored heightens your cravings. Moreover, you’re more likely to choose fast food and sweets after long periods of lethargy.

3. Moods
When you’re feeling down and stressed, your body is more inclined to look for sources of comfort, which, more often than not, are chocolates and sweets. Chocolates contain polyphenols which help activate the pleasure centers of your brain, and acts as pick-me-uppers that give pretty quick results.

What should you do?
Dr. Brian Wansink, author of Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think, says that if you want to fight mindless craving, you’ll need to eat less of what you usually binge on. “You can indulge in it, but just do it less frequently,” he explains. Food substitution also works. “You may be dying for that chocolate sundae, but eating something that’s healthier will eliminate that craving almost as effectively.”

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