Today, I’ll talk about a little green fruit that I can’t seem to get enough of: the jalapeño pepper. Lately, I’ve been desiring them on and in everything, including the obvious (burritos, chili, chicken sandwiches) and the less expected (salads and tuna sandwiches.) But why?
Well, some say that the brain unconsciously learns which nutrients are in which foods and signals through cravings which nutrients that one is in need of. For example, there is the story of the man lost at sea whose cravings led him to eat the eyes and entrails of fish, rather than the meat, which apparently provided him with enough trace nutrients and moisture to survive until rescued. I also remember a story (Never Cry Wolf) in which the main character had to eat mice in the wilderness for a time. At first, he gutted the mice before cooking them, but found that after a while he began to intensely crave fat. Suddenly, it struck him that the wolves he was observing were eating their mice whole, and he realized he’d been eating the least nutritious part of the mouse the whole time.
Anyway, the point of this by now surely disgusting story is that my brain must have learned that there is some vitamin, trace element, or amino acid in jalapeños that’s not found in anything else I eat (as often.) But at least there are far worse things to crave.