Dr. Shawn Talbott explains why we experience intense food cravings and what we can do to stop them.

The source of your bad eating habits may be a lot more scientific than it is behavioral. Dr. Shawn Talbott explains that our intense food cravings are a result of what our gut is telling our brain and vice versa.

Scientists call this interaction the gut/brain axis. Common digestive issues such as bloating, cramping, diarrhea, and constipation are all a result of your gut being out of balance, which in turn sends the wrong signals to your brain.

So what can we do to keep our gut/brain axis in check? Follow Dr. Talbott’s three best tips to get you feeling better both physically and emotionally.

  1. Bring on the fiber! Fiber comes in two forms, insoluble and soluble, both of which are great for gut health. Insoluble fiber gets rid of toxins in the body, while soluble fiber helps normalize digestion and acts as a prebiotic, feeding the good bacteria in our gut. Nuts, seeds, and whole grains are just a few examples of the high fiber foods you should incorporate into your diet.

  2. Add fermented foods to your diet. Fermented foods help to maintain a healthy balance of gut bacteria. Kimchee, yogurt, kefir, and kombucha are all great sources of fermented foods you should include in your meals.

  3. Feed your gut and brain plant-based amino acids. Amino acids are the building blocks of protein, so it’s important that we get enough to help with our body’s physiological functions. Theanine, an amino acid found in matcha green tea, is a great brain nutrient that promotes relaxation, stress reduction, and helps to prevent the negative side-effects of caffeine.

So the next time you start craving cookies and chips, pick up one of these food items instead. Both your stomach and brain will thank you for it!

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