The Science Behind Your Insatiable Pickle Craving

It makes a ton of biological sense

Why are those pickled cucumbers just so dang good? 

The food has virtually no calories, mysteriously lasts in its off-tinted jar for years, and complements a cheeseburger perfectly. So why can’t you stop craving huge bites of one whole? Pickles are not just for pregnant women anymore — pickle cravings are one of the most common cravings around, and some devotees even go so far as to stock their pantries with a plethora of pickle-flavored snacks.

The craving seems random. I mean, what’s really so appealing about the simple snack of a pickled cucumber?

Is it the juice, which some people swear they slurp on its own? Is it the crunch, fabled to pair fantastically well with a slice of greasy pizza?

There’s a chance it’s all of these things — but here’s the real root of the phenomenon. When you break it down and assess what a pickle does for your body, it makes complete biological sense. Pickles are the ultimate cure to some of the most common woes.

Stomach issues are endlessly common; there are over a dozen everyday foods that can make you bloat. The brine of pickle juice is highly acidic. Like the fabled elixir of apple cider vinegar, it imposes a balancing effect on your digestive system, easing your indigestion and preventing painful side effects such as heartburn, constipation, or even bloating.

Pickles are also way high in sodium — which might not be such a bad thing. Sodium means electrolytes. So if you’re dehydrated, sipping your tall glass of water with a side of pickle brine could help you absorb more water.


So dehydration and indigestion — two of the most typical health issues out there — are both mitigated with a crisp, cool cucumber soaked in vinegar. So go ahead and chow down, and read up about 14 other of your weird cravings explained.