I just read a post on a list serve about a gimmick to determine if you are "hungry" or just craving a candy bar when you seek a candy bar. Just ask yourself if you'd eat an apple if there were no candy bar available. Duh. No. I wouldn't. Apples do not take the place of candy bars. Does anyone really think they're "hungry" when they think about eating a candy bar?
Well, sometimes they may indeed be "hungry" and choose to eat a candy bar because they want the taste or texture of that food to satisfy the emptiness in their gut rather than a bowl of bright green broccoli.
You know, my mother believed "if you're really hungry, you'll eat anything." Uh, no. I won't. In fact, I won't even eat something I like when I'm hungry if I don't "feel" like eating it.
There are times when hunger and craving are very distinct with no overlap. If you've just eaten a lovely meal and you're feeling satisfied in your tummy but not in your head, then I think you realize it's a "craving". But if it's 4 p.m. and I haven't eaten since noon and I'm thinking "bowl of pasta" and nothing else will do, that's a combo craving/hunger need. Don't you agree?