“I wake up in the morning craving greasy food. It’s the first thought to crystallize in my mind. Is this common, and what can I do about it?” —Charlie C., Nashville, TN
Your cravings are perfectly normal, and they aren’t coming from nowhere. If you wake up dreaming of bacon, you’ve likely enjoyed more than a few bacon-heavy breakfasts. It was probably a positive experience, or the “neurological reward of a rush of calories,” says Susan B. Roberts, Ph.D., professor of nutrition and psychiatry at Tufts University in Boston. You want to reproduce that rush, thus the craving. To get rid of it, you have to replace it with a new craving. Roberts says two weeks is usually enough time to establish a new habit. Wake up to something delicious but healthy, like an egg-white and spinach whole- wheat wrap, and with enough time you’ll be craving that instead.