Eating healthy can raise questions such as, Are crayons a fruit or a vegetable? and How many steaks does a growing baby need? Answer culinary inquiries with this Groupon.
- $12 for two Groupons, each good for $12 worth of fruit cups ($24 total value)
- See the full menu.
Food Cravings: Giving in to Science
You never know when a hankering is going to strike. Feed your need for knowledge with Groupon's study of food cravings.
For years, scientists believed that food cravings were linked to nutrient deficiencies—a taste for steak might signify a lack of iron, for instance. But recent research has uncovered a different theory. A functional MRI study cited by the Wall Street Journal suggested that food cravings are more similar to an addiction, triggered by reward centers in the brain that relate to memory and emotion. Answering to the craving can trigger the release of neurotransmitters including endorphins (which produce feelings of well-being) and dopamine (which produces the sense of receiving a reward), explaining why we turn to less-than-wholesome "comfort" foods in times of stress.
Nutritionists would love it if we only craved broccoli seasoned with calcium chews, but the reality is that most hankerings tend toward the unhealthy. A survey of college students at an Ontario university found that 97% of women experienced occasional intense cravings, often for carb-loaded foods such as chocolate, donuts, and chips. In the same survey, 68% of men also reported food cravings, though usually for high-fat proteins such as burgers, steaks, and pizza. As you might expect from the “comfort” theory of food cravings, the results of such surveys change drastically depending on the culture.
Although humans may not normally crave foods based on nutritional need, it is true that weightlifters seem to actively crave muscle-building carbs and proteins such as potatoes and pasta. That's because the body can adjust its cravings to be able to perform everyday activities more efficiently. Sports scientist Dr. David Stensel and his colleagues found that runners crave hydrating fruits and cold-water swimmers crave fatty foods that will provide protective padding, just as professional Scrabble players crave alphabet soup.
Mister FruitCup is not your ordinary fruit cup. Instead, it takes the grade school treat to a whole new level. These Mexican-street-food-themed snacks turn fruit into a taste sensation with a medley of sweet and savory flavors. The masala cup douses apples, strawberries, mango, and kiwi in a masala-spiced yogurt, while the traditional Mexican sprinkles chili-lime seasoning, lime juice, and coconut on chunks of tropical fruit. You can also go for dessert with the berry brownie, tres leches, or s'mores fruit cups, which add chocolate sauce and whipped cream in place of spices. If you're feeling really adventurous, you can build your own cup out of the menu of standard or vegan ingredients or enjoy one while sky diving.