I’m the lifelong daydreamer and book hoarder turned nutritionist and wellness expert behind this blog and business.
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Ever stress eaten chocolate over an email that’s landed in your inbox?
A lot of women tell me this one…
How about wanting crunch your way through a whole CASE of corn nuts come tax season?
Let’s have some honest hour…
Being a woman in today’s world are both stressful. And put ’em together???
Cravings hit hard.
I want to empower you today… the first step to changing stress eating and cravings is untangling what type they are.
Put them under a critical lens… give them a little once-over. Thennnnn, you can work on reversing them.
Because until you know what you’re dealing with, trying to win the war with willpower is futile.
Willpower is the wrong ammunition.
Complete peace with food isn’t about power, it’s about presence– how willing are you to give a hard look at your habits and compassionately move out of them?Complete peace with food isn't about power, it's about presence. Click To Tweet
Most cravings (not all though… you’ll see what I’m sayin’ in a minute….) are a mismatch: an emotional or physical need that is asking for something (like rest, comfort, connection, a break…) that you are trying to fix with food. It works temporarily, but then tomorrow, next week, three months from now… it doesn’t.
So in order to pick the right fix, the first step is always identifying: what type of craving is this really?
This is the one where you don’t want to be doing what you’re doing for even one. more. second.
So you find yourself, brain-fried, browsing the pantry or continuously opening the fridge. As if checking back a second, third, seventh time changes what’s in there.
These are the crooked, “come-hither” fingers from cookies you’ve tried to “hide” in the cabinet.
“Come eat us… so much better than working on that blog post…”
Or, the salty snacks that siren-call when you’re at your most tired + vulnerable and simply feel you can’t resist.
If after a stressful day all you want is a warm macaroni and cheese just like momma used to make it… that’s a nostaligic craving.
Nostalgic nod cravings nudge us to nosh mindlessly back to good time when our stress seems insurmountable. They bring up a desire not to move forward and make progress in your life, but to run back to your childhood, fun vacations, or any other happy time when the stress was less and you felt carefree and happy. To metaphorically run back into momma’s open, outstretched arms and be wrapped in safety and comfort.
Your brain ties foods with the experience of the people you were with and the feeling of being safe and loved.
And then in times of stress?
Your brain is wired to keep you safe and whispers not-so-subtly: eating nostalgic nods will bring that warmth, safety, and love back.
This is usually one you can catch red-handed: it’s usually full of dopamine-spiking, quick-fix, simple carbs or caffeine. Gummy bears, 3 pm Starbucks runs, full sleeves of saltine crackers … you know the drill.
It’s whatever you’re reaching for to keep you awake or for-goodness-sakes just let you get through ten more emails or writing the last paragraph of this term paper.
More often than not mindlessly munched or gulped for dear life in foggy, fatigued daze as you try to force yourself to keep going.
And when you snap back to reality, you look down and you’re surprised to find the bag’s allll the way to the bottom and that Starbucks Venti iced coffee slurped to the last loud straw suck.
Yes, it’s what you’re thinking. This is a case where your body is depleted of a nutrient and it’s spurring you on to go find more of it.
An easy example? Many women who are iron-deficient crave foods with metallic tastes or things like eggs, sulfurous vegetables (think: brussel sprouts), and ice chips.
Another common one?
Pregnancy or premenstrual cravings. Hormones can throw off vitamin and mineral balances in your body that it cries out for you to replenish.
Nutritional need cravings are unique and hard to tease apart from other types of cravings. But often, it’s a case of diagnosis by exclusion… X out the above by process of elimination and then you find it.
So that’s that– the four categories of cravings. And your next step to working with cravings?
When one hits, try to stop and identify it.
Like a line up at a police station… examine it from all angles and try to figure out what’s truuuuuly behind it.
I hope this short guide helps you next time a craving hits and you take a minute to find what your body, brain, and heart are truly calling.
And tell me below… I want to hear!
Which type of craving do you get the most?
Had you ever categorized your cravings as a way to create a better relationship with food?
With an unexpected combo of creativity, positive psychology education, and neuronutrition on-lock I'm here as your nutritionist + wellness guide to help you nourish your mind and body, so you have the energy, focus, and confidence to go for your biggest dreams.
My mission is to equip creative women like you with the nutrition knowledge and wellness strategies to make sure you get to seize every opportunity for success + joy.
Hey, doll! I'm Erin.
free wellness mentoring? Umm... yes!