What is on my nightstand this week? I was sent an advanced copy of The Craving Cure, a new book written by Julia Ross, which I highly recommend. I am delighted that the publisher agreed to give away 5 copies to our community members once it becomes available December 12! Read instructions to enter at the end of this post! Julia Ross, best-selling author of The Mood Cure and The Diet Cure, is described as a pioneer in the use of nutrient therapies to target food cravings and problems related to mood, sleep, and addiction. The director of several integrative clinics in the San Francisco Bay Area since 1980, she now directs a worldwide virtual clinic and training programs for health professionals.

julia_home_micShe is also a long time supporter of the Weston A. Price Foundation, having presented at the very first annual Wise Traditions conference, and 3 other conferences which included her own all day tract, and a keynote address.

Sally Fallon Morell wrote the following about Julia’s new book:

“In the land of the free, so many of us are imprisoned by cravings. No one knows more about how to break us out of the industrial food trap than Julia Ross. I have been watching her influence grow for twenty years, as word of her revolutionary work using amino acids to target food addiction has spread. The Craving Cure leads us back to real nourishment and true food freedom.”

Julia explains that commercially designed food-like substances are turning us into helpless cravers and overconsumers of the most caloric and least nutritious diet ever known; a diet that nature never intended us to eat. In our Nourishing Ourselves and Nourishing Our Children Facebook forums, I have received feedback that some adults and children find it challenging to follow our dietary recommendations sustainably because of food cravings, or a tendency to overeat.  This book outlines specific animo acids that help one feel satisfied on the traditional diet our normal-weight ancestors followed, and support natural appetite control.

Julia answers the following questions about The Craving Cure:

How would you describe your book?

The Craving Cure is about how today’s brain-targeted commercial foods are generating the mass cravings that have led to our epidemics of obesity and diabetes. More importantly, it’s about how we can turn off these unnatural urges overnight using a few specific brain-targeted nutrients called amino acids.

Why are you considered an expert on food craving?

I have been directing both addiction and eating disorders treatment programs since 1980. I saw early on that existing treatment wasn’t working well and that a new approach was badly needed. A few years later, my field learned that our programs were failing because of faulty brain chemistry, not poor self-discipline or psychological distress. But brain chemistry was something we didn’t understand, let alone know how to treat! Fortunately, around that time, we also began hearing about a nutritional approach that had impressive research behind it. Thirty years and four thousand clients later, I’m now more impressed about the success of this nutritional approach than ever. Almost all of our food cravers have benefitted quickly and dramatically!

You say that we became a nation of food addicts starting in the 1970s. What happened?

We were persuaded to embark on three radical new dietary experiments which have since dislodged the traditional diets that had kept us healthy and fit throughout history. Most people living today don’t know that for hundreds of thousands of years our weight and health were optimal! Here are the three dietary disasters:

High fructose corn syrup was added to our already high-sugar diet. This increased our total carb intake by 150%.

We cut out traditional saturated fat and substituted processed and damaged trans fats and vegetable oils.

We cut our intake of protein (particularly red meat) by one third.

What Are the Five Craving Types?

We can crave sugar and other addictive foods for five different reasons depending on which of five appetite- and mood-regulating brain chemicals called neurotransmitters we’re deficient in.

Type 1 – Depressed Craver’s eat to feel bright and happy in the afternoon and evening or in winter. They are low in the natural anti-depressant, serotonin.

Type 2 – Crashed Craver’s eat sweets or starchy foods to stop the blood sugar crashes that can impact any or all of the neurotransmitters.

Type 3 – Comfort Craver’s need treats like ice cream or pasta for the pure enjoyment that kills emotional pain. They’re low in the natural narcotic-endorphin.

Type 4 – Stressed Craver’s nibble and graze to relax when the levels of their natural tranquilizer are too low.

Type 5 – Fatigued Craver’s go for caffeinated drinks or dark chocolate for an energy boost since the levels of their brain’s natural energizers, dopamine, norepinephrine, and adrenaline tend to be low.

What can stop our urges to eat badly?

If there is a deficiency in any of the brain’s five appetite-and mood-regulating functions we can supply the exact nutrients needed. They will quickly make us feel satisfied by healthy traditional foods (as we all were before 1970). There are five proteins called amino acids to choose from, depending on our Craving Types. Both our Craving Type and the amino that will stop our type of craving can be identified by our scores on The Craving Type Questionnaire at the beginning of the book and online. All Craving Types must also eat more high-protein foods, rich in all the aminos (the densest sources are meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and cheese), at least three times a day.

How long does it take for the aminos to kill our cravings and do we have to take them forever?

The effects become obvious within twenty-four hours! Children need a few weeks or months on the aminos; teens and adults a few months to a year.

Can our kids take the aminos?

You bet. The directions for child dosing are clear. And the benefits of these little doses are clear too. No more “But I want it!” outbursts at the super market! Like adults, kids also need to eat three solid meals (and snacks as needed) that contain protein (as well as other healthy traditional foods).

There are so many “healthy” diets out there. Once our cravings are gone, can you give us a tip on what diet(s) we should follow?

Avoid going low-calorie, even for a short “detox,” “fast,” or “cleanse.” Why?

We need more nutrients, not fewer, because the 21st century diet is 60% nutrient-void!

We need to reduce our stress levels and starvation is very stressful!

We need to speed up our metabolism and burn the fatty residues of the excess carbs we’ve been eating. By cutting calories too low we typically loose mostly muscle and water and our fat burning capacity is slowed down as is the release of many hormones that would otherwise promote faster burning. (As the Biggest Losers learned.)

Why do you recommend beef and butter?

Because these are the two ancient diet staples that we’ve lost in the past 50 years just as our health and weight began to deteriorate. I recommend that we eat grass-fed, organic versions (which were the only versions commonly available before 1970). The research is clear: the saturated fat in these animal-derived foods is not dangerous; in fact, the reverse. Red meat contains uniquely assimilable forms of iron, zinc, and omega-3 and omega-9 fats, as well as dense amounts of all the amino acids. Our vegan and vegetarian clients often report immediate improvements in energy while eating their first beef meal! Reminder, we’ve been eating red meat for two million years but our troubles only started 50 years ago.

Stable saturated butter-fat protects its precious content of fat-soluble vitamins. Of course, for those with sensitivities to milk solids, butter may not work well, but ghee might (ghee is butter-fat with all solids like lactose, whey, and casein removed).


Flatiron Books has generously offered us 5 hardcover The Craving Cure books for me to give away within the United States and Canada complimentary. Please enter before December 10, 2017 at 11:59 pm Pacific after which time the 5 qualifying responses will be randomly drawn. All entrants will be notified of the results via email, and the names will also be posted here! Please follow these instuctions:

1. Answer either or both of the questions below in the comments with at least 5 sentences to qualify.
2. Be sure to include the title of the book The Craving Cure in your response.

What is your experience of food cravings? Why do you have an interest in this book?