The Surprising Reasons You May Be Craving Ice Cream

There may be a reason why you find yourself aching for a pint of ice cream more often. What gives? Clinical nutritionist Kimberly Snyder told Everyday Health that one reason for the craving can actually stem from our emotions. Many people have been taught to treat dessert, like ice cream, as a reward, especially after a hard day or when a big task has been accomplished. But, in doing so, we can trigger an addictive chemical in our body, known as dopamine, which is responsible for making us feel good, Snyder explained. 

During the hard times of life, fatty foods, such as ice cream, can feel nice to indulge in. In fact, you may realize you're reaching for a pint of ice cream most often during times presented with stress and anxiety. It's during these times "fat can feel stabilizing," Amy Gorin, registered dietitian nutritionist, told Everyday Health. When a food like ice cream feels heavy in your stomach, it can make you feel grounded and sometimes better overall, which is why we end up craving it over and over during troubling days. However, these aren't the only reasons you may be craving ice cream. 

Possible reasons for your craving

While it's certainly okay to indulge in ice cream from time to time, you may want to recognize all the potential reasons behind your craving. As Cosmopolitan reported, "Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like naproxen and Motrin are low-key harmless, but they can actually cause some inflammation in the stomach, according to [Dr. Joseph Colella, a robotic/bariatric surgeon]. An ice cream craving could be your body's way of expressing irritation—and a sign it needs a break."

It's also possible you may need more calcium or vitamin D in your diet. "Cheese and other dairy foods contain both nutrients, and it's not uncommon to eat insufficient amounts of them," the site explained. You may also find yourself wanting ice cream because you are tired and are craving a little bit of energy to get you through the day. While it's normal to experience cravings for ice cream from time to time, you should consider talking to your doctor if you feel your cravings are excessive.