Hunger is a really important thing in weight loss
Hunger is our friend. It took me some time to realise this in my weight loss diet. To be honest, this had been my biggest fear before starting my diet. Simply I just did not want to torture myself with hunger.
I know this what holds back so many people from starting a weight loss diet, just like my mum they think weight loss diet = starvation. And this is a serious problem.
I found the key to breaking through my fear: One day I just did the first step and I started my diet. Well, first I just prepared myself for starvation. I was so desperate to lose weight that I was ready for everything: even for boot camp exercises and starvation.
I am so glad there was no need for either of them :-)
In contrary, I learnt that starvation is not good, it slows down metabolism and makes weight loss even slower.
Anyway, I just started my weight loss diet and I realised on the way that after the first week that it is not my hunger what causes the problem .
Our obesity is usually the result of overeating. we just consume too much calorie. Why cannot we rely on our natural appetite? Why does our appetite betray us? What to do then when we feel hungry?
First, hunger and appetite are not the same.
Who is our enemy: hunger or appetite?
Hunger is a natural protective signal from our bodies. When we feel discomfort or weakness caused by lack of food our stomach start rumble and glucose level drops. In this case, we are hungry, we need real food - we eat out of necessity. And this is fine. When our hunger dictates, we usually eat healthier food and we stop when we are full. So hunger is our friend: it teach us to follow our inner appetite control and eat as much food as we really need.
So we have to feel hunger sometimes: it is normal to feel hunger before meal times.
The real danger is appetite. Appetite is a trained response to food, it is a desire to satisfy our need for food. In plain Engish, when we look and/or smell something good and mouthwatering we have a desire to eat it. We can agree on that, I think, that we are bombarded by pictures and sounds and smells of food nearly everywhere: the food smell around fast food restaurants, the food adverts on telly, the bag of crisp in other people's hand - all influences our appetite.
What really influences our food choices? Read more on this topic here:
Obviously our appetite leads us to not so healthy food choices like chips and chocolate.
So I found that hunger is not the hardest challenge in a weight loss. We can get used to smaller portions and keep our blood sugar level even with 6-7 meals distributes evenly during the day. That's okay, that is manageable. The problem is to make a difference between hunger and appetite and handle our appetite on a clever way.
But how can we handle our appetite?
I deliberately use the "handle" verb instead of "fight against" appetite. As I just cannot see the point fighting against our desire. That makes our desire even stronger. I would recommend 3 simple step:
1. Learn to distinguish appetite from hunger
Whenever you would like to eat something ask yourself: Am I really hungry? Or can I wait until my next meal time to eat? If you can wait, occupy yourself with something else until mealtime. You will see that appetite will disappear quickly.
2. Make a meal plan and stick to it
Plan your meals ahead and adjust them to your lifestyle: so it is balanced, healthy and feasible.
3. Do not ban any of your favourite food
Forbidding your favourites just makes then even more desireable. Instead, include them into your meal plan with limitation and balance them out. If you know that you can have some of your favourite ice cream, that helps you to control your appetite.
Even chocolate can be included into a weight loss diet, indeed it is a must :-)
Read this previous post on this: