How to Handle Pesky Non-Vegan Cravings
A Guide On How To Handle Non-Vegan Food Cravings
I find myself utterly amazed by how the body can intuitively communicate its needs and wants. It has an interesting way of sending out signals and alerts of probable or upcoming mineral deficiency. Research has shown that many food cravings are not cravings directed towards the food itself but rather indicative of certain mineral deficiencies. In my close to three years of vegan dieting, I have experienced an array of non-vegan cravings, from red meats, salmon, milk chocolate to vanilla bean ice cream. And one thing I have learned is not to yield to those relentless "crave signals". I have found that lack of preparation has caused me to either regretfully give in and indulge, or abstain and choose not to eat, period. Meanwhile, the crave alarm and probable mineral deficiency would still remain. Luckily, there is a solution!
In this short article, I will be giving a few pointers on how one can combat some of those persistent and forbidden cravings all the while providing the body with the minerals it needs to thrive, vegan style.
SN: I have never been pregnant, but I imagine vegan cravings being similar to pregnancy cravings because I STOP AT NOTHING!
I have never been a major cheese eater and I really can't recall the last time I wanted to just go in on a block of cheese. I proudly accept that I am apart of the 1% American population that doesn't care for cheese. Meanwhile, back at the ranch, cheese is an ultimate staple food in the American diet and most crave it, even vegans (don't front). So, if you are an ex -cheese lover, and are experiencing this forbidden craving, try curbing it the vegan way by eating foods rich in calcium and fatty acids: kale, flaxseeds, squash, and walnuts.
This one right here was a total double-edged sword for me. I was a major red meat eater back then and I would eat it as much as I could, whenever I could. But, I then started to experience a decline in my digestive system, then my overall health. According to the Blood-Type theory, I learned that those with blood type A are innate vegetarians and naturally produce low levels of hydrochloric acid in the stomach (which helps break down meat) & low levels of intestinal alkaline phosphatase (making it difficult for Type A's to digest and metabolize animal fat and protein). With the terrible side effects I experienced and the knowledge gained, I was encouraged to go vegan. Now as a vegan, I seldom crave red meats, but when I do, I try to combat it by eating foods that are rich in zinc: dried fruit (apricots and mango are my fave.), pumpkin seeds, spinach, and dark chocolate (Blood-Type Diet).
Do you ever crave a greasy Five Guys hamburger or an oily fillet salmon? Well, I have and I still do from time to time. That pestering craving usually indicates a need of Omega 3 fatty acids and/or calcium. Try curbing this craving by eating foods rich in fatty acids and calcium: flax seeds, kale, fortified plant milk, chia seeds, walnuts, and algal oil. You can also choose to take daily vegan omega 3 supplements!
If you ever find yourself giving into these forbidden cravings, know it's okay (although your tummy and guts may be upset with you) and it's not the end of the world. You can always start anew next meal! Stay encouraged and be prepared while navigating your vegan journey, because those cravings don't play and will come like a thief in the night!
Stay Healthy, Stay Curious & Stay Away From The "Forbidden" Foods!