Anyone who's tried-and failed-to give up her 3 P.M. trip to the vending machine or indulged guiltily in a bag of Cool Ranch Doritos knows how hard it is to resist a craving. You can plan to just have a healthy snack, but seeing that apple on your desk often just doesn't make it easier to do without the thing you really want.
Turns out, cravings originate not in the stomach but in the brain, according to an article in the most recent issue of Current Directions in Psychological Science. When people long for a specific food, they conjure up vivid images of it and have trouble thinking of anything else. In one experiment, volunteers who said they craved chocolate recalled fewer words and took longer to solve math problems than volunteers who didn't have chocolate on the brain.
There is a possible solution: simple cognitive exercises that have nothing to do with food at all. One experiment mentioned by the authors showed that volunteers reported fewer cravings when they imagined aRead More »from Craving Chocolate? Here's How To Stop.