If you want to lose weight, there’s a very good chance that you’re going to be feeling hungry throughout the process, and that hunger can feel uncomfortable at times.
The good news is that hunger doesn’t mean you are starved of nutritional resources.
Hunger is a biological process that’s triggered by a release of hormones in the body that’s mostly associative.
What that means is that you will feel hungry for what you are USED TO eating…and what you are used to eating is what brought you to the state of health that you’re looking to change.
This works both ways.
If you are used to eating 3000 calories per day, your body will feel hungry until you eat that, because that’s what you’re used to.
If you have been on a crazy low-calorie diet and are only eating 1,000 calories per day, your body won’t feel hungry anymore after you hit that number of calories.
Those feelings of hunger don’t mean that you shouldn’t eat less than 3,000 calories just because “I still FEEL hungry.”
And it definitely doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t eat more than 1,000 calories because “I just don’t FEEL hungry.”
If we only ever did what we “felt like” doing, we probably wouldn’t pay taxes, go to work, or ever have graduated middle school.
Only going by how you “feel” isn’t a good strategy for normal life, so why would the way you eat be any different?
So, now that we understand those feelings of hunger a little bit better, here’s 3 tips for staying on track with your nutrition when the hungries kick in.
1. Eat Enough Protein:
After meeting with thousands of people over the years and discussing their diets, I can safely say that the vast majority of men and women who are trying to lose weight just don’t eat enough protein.
Do you NEED a high protein diet to be healthy? Absolutely not.
Does a high protein diet curb your appetite, avoid cravings, fill you up faster and regulate your hunger hormones? Absolutely.
Studies show that the ONE thing that is shown to cause an effective weight loss diet is the amount of protein that is in it.
More protein in your diet typically = more weight loss on a diet.
You should aim to get about 1g per lb of LEAN BODY MASS. The easiest way to do this is to use what you would weigh at your absolute fittest. So, if you weigh 200lb, but in a perfect world you would weigh 120lb then your protein goal would be 120lb.
If that doesn’t fill you up, you’re safe to go even higher than that! Studies show the safety of protein in a diet up to around 400g per day!
2. A Workout Regimen!
I can hear it now “here he goes, preaching diet and exercise…I want the REAL secrets!”
Diet and exercise, with an emphasis on exercise, IS the real secret to curbing appetite.
Exercise is proven to suppress the brain regions associated with hunger signaling. It reduces hunger cravings and increases the feelings of fullness.
You will find when you are exercising that you just don’t have the desire to eat as much.
When you get on an exercise program like the one at Gage Strength Training in West Chester, PA you’ll watch the pounds fall off the body and feel amazing changes to your appetite.
Another important factor in regulating those cravings of hunger has to do with how well and how much you sleep!
During restful sleep, your hormone system gets regulated and refreshed. That includes those hunger hormones (the one that makes you feel hungry, and the one that makes you feel full).
Ideally, when those are firing on all cylinders, you’ll avoid over-eating and curb your hunger…but when you don’t sleep well, those hormones don’t fire properly.
You end up feeling MORE hungry, and don’t feel full as quickly. This causes over-eating and a lack of willpower around food!
There’s a disastrous Eat-Sleep-Eat cycle that occurs…How we eat (sugary foods, caffeine, alcohol) can effect our quality of sleep (causing lack of REM and deep sleep), which causes us to eat poorly the next day (Low willpower, not feeling full, and over-eating).
Stop the cycle by cleaning up your diet and getting a great night of sleep!
If you’re looking to kill your hunger cravings, those are the 3 places to start.
If you haven’t found a personal trainer in West Chester, PA yet and you’re looking for the best way to lose weight- Gage Strength Training is accepting new clients!