I've asked a question before about craving pickle juice, but I believe a question a bit more broad in scope is needed. I crave acidic foods, always have- pre-paleo and post-paleo. However, more so post-paleo.
Pickle juice, tomatoes- especially canned and in juices, mustard, vinegar ... you name it and I probably like it.
So, my question: Why do I crave acidic things? Should I ignore this and just go with it? What is the biology behind it (I don't think I need to adjust the pH of my stomach ... but who knows)? Is it good? bad? neutral?
Any advice or thoughts welcome. Thank you. :)
I don't really sign on to the old "Instinctivore" movement where a specific craving meant you were deficient in something - if that was the case, I would be a chronic sufferer from a lack of tacos and french fries.
The only "craving" that I think has merit, are mineral cravings (craving salty, specifically) - which can show signs of an electrolyte imbalance.
Don't discount that your taste buds probably just like salty/bitter/tangy.
And much of those foods are "ok" on paleo. Although vinegar is a "grey area" on traditional 1.0 paleo, I put Apple Cider in almost all my broths, wet-cooked roasts (and braises), prepared greens, and even use it for shampoo and aftershave (to combat skin issues).
Try a low-sodium food (mustard or vinegar) to see if that curbs your craving. I know when I was trying a leangains protocol it was suggested to drink water with Bragg's organic apple cider vinegar in it to help curb harsh hunger pangs. With ice it's pretty refreshing.
If it doesn't, then you may have some issues with your electrolyte balance.
Acidic foods, especially the ones you mention, like pickle juice and vinegar, aid in digestion. They are what's called "proteolytic," meaning, it aids in protein digestion. This is why we crave certain acidic condiments with burgers/meats.
Mustard is made with vinegar, but also, by itself, it, along with other spicy foods, stimulate stomach acid production.
Vinegar supports the acidic environment in the stomach necessary to digest protein.
Satisfy your desire!