I recently discovered a blog called Nourishing Your Sober Self written by Deborah Dunn. The thing that caught my eye was that she includes caffeine and food in her list of addictions people struggle to overcome, as well as drugs and alcohol, which I find to be an eye-opening approach.
This week’s post was about sugar cravings, which have something interesting in common with caffeine, alcohol, and even drug addiction: these are all creators of yin energy, which is light and expansive. Sounds good, right? Too much, though, and you’re flying high, or off the handle. A balance with yang, or contractive, grounding energy, is vital to prevent cravings.
The following are foods that offer grounding yang energy: corn, carrots, onions, beets, winter squashes, sweet potatoes and yams, turnips, parsnips and rutabagas, red radishes, daikon, green cabbage, and burdock root.
These aren’t exactly spring foods, but they provide the “sweet” sensation without the addictive qualities of yin. Dark, bitter greens like kale, collards, Swiss chard, spinach, arugula, etc., are also great for cleansing the palate and the blood, promoting healthy digestive flora for the maximum absorption of nutrients, and then adding nutrients such as vitamin B and calcium to the body, which reduce cravings. Vitamin and mineral deficiency can cause the body to crave strange things in the search for nutrition.
To get some of these foods into your diet in an easy, tasty way, try this great base recipe for One-Pot Spring Chicken Soup from RealSimple magazine. I added kale and sweet potato to the recipe for additional nutrients; cabbage and turnips are another great addition; and the stock base is hydrating.