Archive for the tag - hunger

5 Steps To Stay Full Longer!

Hey Davey,

I’m 90 pounds overweight and can’t seem to stay full for more than an hour. I want to lose weight, but I don’t want to feel like I’m starving. For example, the other night I had a massive dinner at a Chinese restaurant. An hour later, I was hungry again. So I ordered a second dinner from KFC. I can’t believe how much food I’m eating.

Any advice for staying full longer?

Thanks,
Chris

tumblr_my7w12DSyA1rman8co1_1280Hey Chris,

When it comes to feeling full longer, not all foods are created equal – and there are a few handy tricks that can help curb hunger.

Here are five steps to follow.

  1. Step 1: Ask yourself if you’re you really hungry? Know the difference between hunger and appetite. Hunger is the body’s need for food whereas appetite is the psychological desire for food. With this in mind, rate your hunger on a scale of 1 to 10 – with 1 being insatiably hungry and 10 being in pain from overeating. Using this hunger scale, you’ll slowly learn to both identify true hunger and do a better job of differentiating psychological desires for food.
  2. Step 2: Drink water. Believe it or not, water is actually filling. It creates more volume in your stomach, which can make a significant difference. Best of all, water has no calories. Various studies (including this one) have demonstrated the power of water in weight loss.
  3. Step 3: Add fiber and lean protein to your diet. Fiber takes a long time to digest and numerous studies have illustrated the satiating effect of lean protein foods. For this reason, high fiber and lean protein foods cause you to feel more satisfied. As a result, you’ll consume fewer calories throughout the day.
  4. Step 4: Opt for high volume foods. High volume foods are foods that contain lots of air or water. As such, they’re much less calorie dense. Think vegetables and salads. Because these foods add bulk to your diet without adding a large amount of calories, they’re worth loading up on. By eating a large volume of food, your stomach will feel full.
  5. Step 5: Eat nuts and peanut butter. Nuts are high in both protein and fiber, and are a great healthy snack that will fill you up. Peanut butter is also a good treat. Researchers at Purdue University found that people feel fuller and eat less after snacking on peanut butter than other foods.

I hope you’re able to put these steps to work for you.

Love,
Davey

P.S. To transform your life through the foods you eat, I recommend downloading Davey Wavey’s Insanely Easy Guide to Eating Smarter. I’ll show you how to eat in a way that supports your health and fitness goals.

Is Your Hunger Emotional or Physical?

Today’s guest post is by Davey Wavey’s good friend and spiritual weight release coach, Diane Petrella. Diane is also one of the contributors to The Davey Wavey Weight Loss Program.

Do you know the difference between emotional hunger and physical hunger? The signs seem identical until you learn their unique characteristics. Understand the difference so you can take charge of emotional eating and lose weight in the process.

Here are five traits that differentiate emotional hunger from physical hunger. This knowledge and awareness helps you prevent emotional eating episodes.

1. Emotional hunger occurs in response to your feelings. Physical hunger occurs because your body needs fuel.

If you tend to eat for emotional reasons, it’s not only due to painful feelings. Any feeling that is difficult to regulate may trigger the urge to eat. For example, you feel sad and turn to food for comfort.  Or, you feel excited about something and react by eating. It’s not the feeling itself that triggers the urge to eat; it’s the inability to let the feeling be present without stimulating it or numbing it with food.

Physical hunger is biologically based and connected to blood sugar levels in your body. Your body responds with a grumbling in your belly, a light-headed feeling, fatigue or a headache. You also may feel irritable or have difficulty concentrating.

2. Emotional hunger tends to come on suddenly. Physical hunger emerges gradually.

When your emotions drive your craving, the impulse to eat feels sudden, intense and urgent. You confuse an emotional need with a physical one. It’s not about the food, but food is the only thing on your mind.

With physical hunger, the sensations in your body develop over time. If you’re attuned to your body, you notice cues that your body needs food. You feel in control of these cues. Food is something you desire, but it can wait.

Sometimes, however, physical hunger does come on suddenly due to blood sugar instability. Please seek medical guidance to determine if this applies to you.

3. With emotional hunger you crave certain foods. With physical hunger you’re open to many options.

When you eat for emotional reasons, you tend to want specific foods, such as cookies, chips or pizza. You believe nothing else will help so you’re not open to alternatives.

When you’re physically hungry, you’re open to many food choices. Even carrots and celery look appealing to your rumbling stomach.

4. Emotional hunger doesn’t notice signs of fullness. With physical hunger, you stop eating when full.

With emotional hunger, you generally stop eating when you become numb to the feeling that triggered the impulse to eat. You’re not as attuned to your body because you’re satisfying an emotional need not a physical one.

When you eat because you’re physically hungry, and you’re able to control your impulses, you decide when you’re going to stop eating. You feel in tune with your body and respond to the sensation of fullness. You make a conscious choice to stop because you’ve eaten enough.

5. Emotional eating induces feelings of guilt. Physical hunger is satisfied with no remorse.

Emotional eating episodes perpetuate a cycle of self-blame. You eat because you want to feel better. You feel better at first because food numbs your feelings. Then, guilt and shame replace the feeling that triggered the impulse to eat in the first place. The cycle continues.

When you eat to satisfy a physical hunger only, your body feels nourished and you feel content. There is no guilt because you know eating fulfills a necessary need.

It’s Not About the Food

If you struggle with emotional eating, understand it’s not about finding the right nutritional plan. It’s about allowing your feelings to be experienced and released in a safe, nurturing way. Practice the Stop-Breathe-Reflect-Choose technique to create space between the urge to eat and acting on that urge. Identify and name the feeling you’re experiencing. Develop a list of strategies to help soothe and comfort yourself. Learn to allow your feelings to flow through you rather than push them away with food.

Do you understand your hungers? In the comments below, let us know how you cope.

How to Snack Healthy.

Hey Davey,

I have a quick question for you: How do you stop yourself from snacking out of boredom or settling for unhealthy foods?

Do you have any tips for staying on the right track when there just aren’t the right foods around?

Love,
Emily

If you're bored, find a better way to pass the time. Like playing with your dog. And, studies have shown that petting a dog actually reduces blood pressure.

Hey Emily,

There’s nothing wrong with snacking in between meals when it’s to curb hunger. But it’s important to distinguish between true hunger and appetite. Hunger is the body’s need for food whereas appetite is more about psychological desires for food.

When you start to feel the munchies, experts recommend rating your hunger on a 10 point scale wherein 1 is insatiably hungry and 10 is overly full. If you’re feeling a 4 or higher, you can probably satisfy your urge by drinking a glass of water with a bit of juice for flavor. If you’re feeling a 3, maybe a healthy snack will help hold you over until your next meal.

If snacking is in order, here are a few tips to help you make healthier choices.

  1. Be proactive. Being proactive starts at the grocery store; buy healthy snack foods like fruits, veggies and hummus. Stock up on peanut and other nut butters that are satisfying and delicious. If you’re going to a friend’s house, bring a snack with you. Just throw an apple into your backpack or purse. By being proactive, you won’t have to be reactive.
  2. Purge… your kitchen cabinets. While buying healthy foods is crucial, it’s equally important to rid your pantry of unhealthy options like cookies, ice cream and potato chips. Box up all your unopened and unhealthy snack foods and donate them to a local food bank. If it doesn’t nourish you, don’t give it space in your home or your life.
  3. Think about how the snack will make you feel. When selecting a snack, take a moment or two to consider how you’ll feel in another hour. Will you be glad you ate it? How will you feel in another day? By asking yourself these simple questions, you can use your inner guidance to make smarter choices.
  4. Use portions. Overeating is overeating, even when it involves healthy snack foods. To prevent overeating, always portion your snack out into a small bowl or small plate. When we use bigger plates, we tend to be more generous in our portions (as the quantity of food can look smaller in proportion). Moreover, when you eat directly from the box or bag, it’s impossible to monitor your portions.
  5. Find a new hobby. Snacking isn’t a hobby like collecting coins or folding origami. The purpose of snacking isn’t for passing the time; it’s to fuel your body with the nourishment it needs between meals. Instead of dealing with boredom by eating food, find another pastime. Go for a walk. Take a jog. Build something. Or just distract yourself in another way, like playing with a pet or reading the latest post on DaveyWaveyFitness.com.

I hope these tips help you better understand hunger and the role snacking can play in a healthy and active lifestyle.

Love,
Davey Wavey

P.S. If anyone else has any tips, feel free to share them in the comments below.

Am I Really Hungry? Use the Hunger Scale.

Drinking water is a great way to curb appetite.

Last week, I launched the hugely popular Davey Wavey Weight Loss Program and I’ve been getting a lot of great feedback and questions. One of the more common questions is about identifying true feelings of hunger.

As I’ve mentioned before, there’s a difference between hunger and appetite. Hunger is the body’s need for food whereas appetite is more about psychological desires for food. Because of appetite, we consume food when we’re not really hungry – often as a way to cope with stress, to deal with boredom, to self-sooth, etc.

To become more aware of the difference between cravings and true hunger, many nutritionists recommend using a hunger scale. While you can use any range of numbers, I prefer scoring hunger and fullness on a scale of 1 to 10 as follows:

  1. Insatiably hungry
  2. Seriously hungry
  3. Stomach growling hungry
  4. Slightly hungry
  5. No longer hungry but not yet satisfied
  6. Comfortably satisfied
  7. Starting to feel full
  8. Feeling quite full
  9. Starting to get a stomach ache from so much food
  10. In actual pain from overeating

When you feel yourself reaching for food, rate your hunger. If it’s a 4 or higher, maybe you can just have a tall glass of water with lemon to hold yourself off for a half hour. Or maybe, if you’re somewhere closer to a 3, an apple might hold you over until your next meal.

Ideally, you’d like to stay somewhere in the 3 – 7 range. If you become insatiably hungry, for example, you’re more likely to overeat (as it takes up to 20 minutes for the stomach to signal to the brain that is full). To do a better job of self regulating, it’s just as important to rate your fullness after eating.

Using this hunger scale, you’ll slowly learn to both identify true hunger and do a better job of differentiating psychological desires for food.

For more information about losing weight and keeping it off, download The Davey Wavey Weight Loss Program.

Does Exercising Hungry Burn More Fat?

Fuel your body to get the most out of your workouts.

You’ve probably heard the claim: If you exercise while hungry, your body will burn more fat. But is it true?

The theory behind this is pretty simple. If you exercise while hungry, your body will dip into fat stores for fuel – instead of just using the carbohydrates readily available from a pre-workout meal. It seems to make sense – but how does it measure up?

A new report in Strength and Conditioning Journal looked at the data and concluded that the body burns the same amount of fat regardless of hunger. However, the report also found that you’re more likely to lose muscle when exercising in a depleted state.

Moreover, I suspect that hungry exercisers won’t have the energy to really push their workout and to increase intensity. When I’m hungry, I don’t have the energy needed to power through my sets and reps – and by cutting down on my workout, I cut down on my results.

It’s important to provide your body with the fuel it needs. You wouldn’t take a road trip without fuel in your car, and neither should you hit the gym while hungry. Even eating a banana an hour before working out can help give your body some quick fuel.

Bottom line: Don’t exercise hungry.