There is a big reason why you might hear people talking about massive cravings during a pandemic. Kent Berridge, Ph.D., a professor of Psychology and Neuroscience in the University of Michigan’s Department of Psychology, said Men’s health that stressful situations trigger corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF), the main stress neurotransmitters found in parts of your brain: the hypothalamus, amygdala, and nucleus accumbens – all areas that can trigger cravings.
What’s more, CRF can also make some stress triggers more unpleasant by acting in other parts of the brain, which causes more food consumption to be carried out as an act of “hedonic self-medication,” Dr. Berridge. The exact factors behind what we desire are not yet fully determined by neuroscience, but he assures that they are not random. Cravings are very specific to an individual, their history with food, and preferences.
And living in quarantine and financial hardship during a pandemic is certainly tense enough to ignite and increase desire, said Dr. Berridge. When people are very tense, they tend to want foods that are very tasty and high in calories. It can be assumed that many Americans want to eat more Mexican food in restaurants because the cooking is something familiar that offers delicious flavors and relatively high calorie counts.
Whatever the reason, we all can’t wait to eat at our favorite Mexican place.
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