First off, here at Thrive With The Seasons there is no judgment, no labels, and no good or bad. Instead we show kindness and support. We learn from one another, expand our health knowledge, adapt to our own needs and challenge ourselves to be the best version of ourselves. When it comes to nutrition, we have the choice to fuel our body with nourishing foods and the power to make a positive change. Motivation only come from within. As your nutritionist (in training), I will guide you to a thriving lifestyle where you feel your best. I'm here to provide you tools and recipes that will enable you to make the right choices for YOU.
I have a confession.
I might have eaten an entire bag of chips. What kind? At this point it really doesn't matter. At the time, I found myself craving for something salty and crispy. After work, I went to the grocery store, bought a bag and devoured some of it before reaching my front door. Half way through the bag, I realized I needed to stop. This is not as satisfying as I thought. I felt undernourished. I felt like I needed more, but the more I ate, the more I was craving something else, something with substance.
This uncontrollable craving (sometimes in form of chocolate) comes once a month (within two weeks of my period). Can you relate?
Throughout your menstrual cycle, levels of estrogen and progesterone fluctuates which also may play a role in decreased levels of serotonin. Serotonin is a brain neurotransmitter responsible for keeping appetite in check and helping your feel calm. Although it is known as a brain neurotransmitter, it is also made in the digestive tract. Therefore, what you eat influences your serotonin levels.
As your levels of serotonin plummet, your body begins to crave carbs and sugar. These "comfort foods" boost levels of serotonin, making you feel happier and relaxed. However, because they lack nutrients, your body will experience a crash and you'll end up craving more junk.
The majority of the body's serotonin can be found in the gut.
Since the majority of the body's serotonin can be found in the gut, it's important to incorporate nutritious foods during the most vulnerable time in our cycle. Upping your intake of fibre and protein, as well as foods high in Vitamin B, will help stabilize your hormones and blood sugar levels.
Foods to help fight cravings
- Whole grains
- Nuts and seeds
- Nutritional yeast
- Crimini mushrooms
Ever since my chip episode, I made a conscious effort to choose foods that will fuel me and keep me satisfied (without compromising the taste of course). In my planner, I marked the days that I would be most vulnerable to food cravings, and planned out my meals to include kale chips, green smoothie and mac and cheese (the good stuff).
Have you tried my recipes? I would love to hear your thoughts. Shoot me an email or tag your photo with @ThriveWithTheSeasons