From Science Daily:

After a stressful day, it’s almost second nature to laze on the couch and drown our sorrows in a bowl of ice-cream or potato chips. Soon, we glance down and realize we’ve managed to consume the entire pint or bag. So, what makes these foods so irresistible — causing us to mindlessly indulge? According to a Texas A&M Health Science Center registered dietitian, there’s a difference in what you think your body craves and what it actually needs.

“Eating a recommended, balanced diet will cover most of your cravings,” said Taylor Newhouse, registered dietitian, with the Texas A&M School of Public Health. However, as a society, we tend to avoid the green things on our plate and we miss out on key nutrients our body needs.”

The insatiable sweet tooth

Fluctuating blood sugar levels may be to blame if you immediately reach for sweet snacks. “As blood glucose (blood sugar) levels change throughout the day, the body tries to keep these levels stable,” Newhouse said. “Still, this is counterproductive; consuming sugary foods will only feed this addiction and result in more cravings.”

In fact, sugar releases endorphins within the body that make you feel happy or comfortable. Newhouse said this ‘sugar high’ can also lead to the overconsumption of simple carbohydrates and result in binging — now considered an official eating disorder. “We tend to overconsume carbohydrates because they’re easily digestible and give us the same boost as sugar,” she said. “It’s imperative we learn to replace that ‘high’ with…

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