Are food cravings nature or nurture? According to researchers, they're a little bit of both!
Food cravings that are due to nature could have to do with foods your ancestors grew up eating, for one. Certain regions of the world eat more of one food and less of another, and over time our body adapts and naturally begins to crave these foods. Things like that are not in our control.
There is also going to a difference with the way your digestive system works with certain foods. When we are not exposed to a certain type of food for awhile (or over the long term in an ancestrial line of thinking) our body sometimes stops producing the enzymes needed to digest the food. One common example is milk. If you stop drinking milk for awhile, you quite often struggle to digest it when you resume. This normally is a temporary condition, however many people are born without the ability to digest the sugar in milk called lactose. For these individuals, nature is affecting the foods they can comfortably eat.
Food cravings can be mostly due to nature or nurture - depending on the person.
So, what does nurure and food cravings look like? For example, maybe you always crave pizza on Fridays because when you were growing up, Friday was pizza night - it was the end of the week and everyone was relaxed and happy. Therefore, pizza, Friday and good feelings were lumped together in your mind.
The good news is that if you can uncouple the food from the feels, you can dissipate your cravings, according to Martin Binks, PhD. associate professor and director of the Nutrition and Metabolic Health Initiative at Texas Tech.