What is My Appetite Saying to Me?

CIMG0067Everyone has experienced this: sometimes you feel like eating and you (more or less consciously) comply. Sometimes this is actually hunger, which is signalling to you that your body needs replenishment.

But there could be a whole different cause when you suddenly sense the desire to eat:

  • Thirst

One study showed that 80% of the participants could not tell the difference between hunger and thirst. They thought they were hungry, but their bodies were really just dehydrated and were thirsty. You can learn to listen better to your body and to ask yourself: am I really sensing hunger or is it possible I’m just thirsty? Or you can just test it by drinking a large glass of water. If you are still feeling hungry 20 minutes later, then it was really hunger and not hidden thirst.

  • Boredom

Sometimes we just don’t know what we should do, so we eat. This should not be. If you are bored, you can exercise. You can do some gymnastics or take a little walk through the house or outside. This is good for your blood pressure and circulation. Perhaps during your walk, you will discover what you would really like to do.

Perhaps you have trained/conditioned your body that when it always wants something, it will always get something. It behaves like a spoiled child that is always looking for attention and care through food. You can unlearn this. Three meals per day is enough. Snacks in between are not necessary unless you are diabetic or have low blood sugar. Get your body used to long pauses between meals.

  • Eating too fast

About 20 minutes after beginning a meal, the brain releases hormones that signal that we have consumed enough nutrition and that we can end the meal. You feel full. This is a function of time. Normal, healthy foods like meat, vegetables, and fruit take a while to chew and digest. When you are finished eating, you are normally full. Many “unnatural,” artificial foods can be swallowed quickly. You don’t really have to chew, and you end up eating mountains of it before you sense, “Now, I’m full.”

The next time you feel like eating:

– first drink something

– first do something else

If your desire to eat is still there after trying these, eat something that will keep you busy for a while with chewing and digesting. Enjoy eating well and becoming full. Bon Appetit.