General Diet Plans and Questions - Hungry all the time - any suggestions?




pounds off
03-26-2008, 08:39 AM
I have been struggling with on and off dieting since 2003. I started at 155 and had the motivation to "starve" myself to 116 but as soon as I got there, I blew it. I'm currently at 135 and while I'd love to see 120 again, i'd be thrilled at 125. Yes, 135 is still within a normal BMI for my height (at the upper end), however, when I hit 116 I replaced ALL (and I mean ALL) my clothes, both personal and business and I have to get back to a weight where I can fit into them again. Here's my problem. I'm ALWAYS hungry. Food just does not keep my satisfied long. I eat a good combination of protein, whole grains, fruits, dairy and healthy fat and its not satisfying me. I'm very much into intuitive eating and can very well distinguish the difference between true hunger, emotional hunger and cravings and when I eat, its out of actual hunger, nothing else. Here's an example, at 5:30 this morning (I get up at 4:30 for work) I had 1 cup (cooked) steel cut oats with 1/4 cup cranberries and 1/2 cup almonds added to it, 2 hard boiled eggs and a large can of V8. Here it is, 7:30 and i'm honestly starving. I eat a LARGE meal every 2 hours and when I dont I am hungry, irritable, and become very light headed. My doctor did a complete physical and complete blood panel - all perfect. I saw an endocrinologist and my thyroid and glands are perfect. In February I had both a upper endoscopy and colonoscopy and all was normal. I even had a fecal screening to check for parasites and nothing was found. My blood sugar levels at the doctor and at home are perfect - My fiance is a type 1 diabetic, so i have been using his glucose meter to check my blood sugar and when i'm feeling starving, my blood sugar level is perfect, so its not hyopglycemia or reactive hypoglycemia. If I eat a small snack (a piece of fruit, granola bar, yogurt, etc...) when I get hungry, it only takes 15 or 20 minutes until i'm hungry again, so instead I go for something larger. My boss would not be happy to see me eating at my desk every 15 minutes. My doctor says since there is nothing wrong with me, I just have to "tough it out" and not give into the hunger but he's not the one at work with a growling tummy and feeling lightheaded. I've gained 20 pounds since I was at my goal and I cant keep gaining. This is more than vanity weight or a desire to avoid buying bigger clothes - my BIGGEST concern is that i'm gaining 1 to 2 pounds a week now and it has to stop. any ideas, anyone?:?:


Lovely
03-26-2008, 08:45 AM
Your breakfast sounds good... have you kept track of how many calories you're having in a day? Would you be willing to give us an "all day" example that we might be able to look at?

If that yields nothing, it is a possibility that your body is naturally happier at the weight that you're at now.

pounds off
03-26-2008, 08:59 AM
Your breakfast sounds good... have you kept track of how many calories you're having in a day? Would you be willing to give us an "all day" example that we might be able to look at?

If that yields nothing, it is a possibility that your body is naturally happier at the weight that you're at now.


I'd be willing to accept that my body is where it wants to be - but its not staying at its current weight, i'm gaining 1 or 2 pounds a week which is not acceptable.

Here is my meals for yesterday:

Breakfast - same as today
5:30 a.m. 1 cup (cooked) steel cut oats with 1/4 cup cranberries and 1/2 cup almonds added to it, 2 hard boiled eggs and a large can of V8

7:30 snack - 1 banana, 1 slice whole grain bread with 2 tb natural peanut butter, 8 oz yogurt

9:30 snack - 3 oz deli turkey, 1 cup baby carrots with ranch dressing

12:00 lunch - sandwich made of 4 oz roast beef, 1 oz cheese, 2 slices whole grain bread with mayo. Large salad with olive oil and vinegar dressing. 1 pear. 1 60 cal. jello pudding cup. a 100 calorie pack of cookies.

1:30 snack - mozzarella cheese stick. raw cauliflower and broccoli dipped in hummus

3:30 snack - 1/2 cup cottage cheese mixed with 1 hard boiled egg chopped

5:30 dinner - 6 oz broiled salmon. 2 cups asparagus drizzled with olive oil. Can of spinach. 1 cup whole grain rice. 1 whole avacado. 1 cup milk.

8 p.m. snack - 1/2 cup nuts and canned fruit no sugar added.

This is what I needed to eat to satisy hunger. I stopped when I was full and never completely felt satisfied - still a bit hungry all day. Honestly, I need to eat more than this to get out of the hunger zone. Do you see any problems?


Get n healthy
03-26-2008, 09:05 AM
I know where you are coming from. I have to really experiment with food to see what keeps me satisfied and what does not. And it seems, what i have for breakfast sort of sets the pace for the whole day. Now, a lot of people can eat oatmeal and be full until lunch. I am not one of those. I have to eat something with ALOT of fiber and protien . The thing i have found that helped me the most was Special K Protien Plus cereal with blueberries or some fruit on top (be sure to get the Protien Plus, if you try this). That is what works for me. So just experiment with some other foods that you start your day with.
Also, keep in mind, you eat EARLY...geeze that is early. If i ate that early, i certainlyl wouldnt be full til lunch no matter what i ate. But try a different breakfast and see how your body reacts to different foods. I had to play around with it for a long time before i found some foods that really had staying power.

Ruthxxx
03-26-2008, 09:13 AM
I'm with Faerie. Have you run your food through Fitday? It looks like a lot of calories to me.

carolr3639
03-26-2008, 09:45 AM
Jean Antenello in her book Naturally Thin by Eating More said something like for every diet there is an equal and opposite binge. So maybe because of your extreme dieting your body is now binging so to speak to make up for it. It's like you are living in days when food was scarce and your body thought it was starving so now it is getting the save up for winter message. It will take time but you appetite will normalize again.

pounds off
03-26-2008, 10:09 AM
I'm with Faerie. Have you run your food through Fitday? It looks like a lot of calories to me.

Yes, I have been using fitday for quite some time. I am eating 3000 to 4000 calories a day. I know that is too much. I accept that. I am trying to find a way to combat constant hunger so that I dont need to eat thismuch. My problem is that I'm eating the bare minimum to be satisfied and even with the 3 to 4000 calories per day, I'm still feel hungry. I learned through intuitive eating that you should eat when you are truly hungry, stop when you feel satsified (not full). I am doing that and it takes this much food to make me feel just outside the hunger zone. I'm not emotional eating and i'm not giving into cravings. It takes that much food for me to not be lightheaded and have a growling tummy and the amount i need to feel not hungry is causing me to gain. I was hoping other members would have suggestions on how to deal with constant hunger even when eating enough or in my case, too much.

pounds off
03-26-2008, 10:11 AM
Jean Antenello in her book Naturally Thin by Eating More said something like for every diet there is an equal and opposite binge. So maybe because of your extreme dieting your body is now binging so to speak to make up for it. It's like you are living in days when food was scarce and your body thought it was starving so now it is getting the save up for winter message. It will take time but you appetite will normalize again.

That's a very interesting thought. Its been about 4 years since I've been eating this volume of food. I dieted in 2003, lost all the weight, went off plan in 2004 and have been gaining every since. Do you think it can take longer than 4 years for appetite to normalize after 1 year of dieting?

srmb60
03-26-2008, 11:10 AM
We're an incredibly nosey bunch ;)
Here are my questions ...
You have a desk job? really sitting all day or like my sister who runs work orders and things all over the dealership?
I don't think you mentioned exercise?
Would you let us know what your protein and fiber numbers are?

Please and thanks ...

pounds off
03-26-2008, 11:16 AM
We're an incredibly nosey bunch ;)
Here are my questions ...
You have a desk job? really sitting all day or like my sister who runs work orders and things all over the dealership?
I don't think you mentioned exercise?
Would you let us know what your protein and fiber numbers are?

Please and thanks ...


Hi there:

Yes, I have a full time sit down job. Its a desk job with very limited movement. At this time, i do not do any formal exercise. I have neuropathy (nerve pain), reflex sympathetic dystrophy (pain in my feet) and chronic back pain, neck and shoulder pain all from a bad accident and have not found any exercise I can do that does not leave me in horrible pain the rest of the night. My orthopedic surgeon and physical therapist both advise against it at this point as the spinal fusions I have had are still fairly new. I eat on average 70-100 grams of protein a day (too much) and my fiber intake has been between 45 and 60 grams. I can assure you that my hunger is not caused from burning too many calroies LOL! I hardly move.

Lovely
03-26-2008, 11:35 AM
I'm racking my brain...

How are you about drinking water? Getting enough? Sipping if you feel a little hungry?

Some of the things you mentioned (ranch dressing, cheeses etc) are somewhat high in calories/fat. Are these lower cal versions? If not, have you tried switching to lower cal versions to see if you're satisfied with them?

And just because we continue to be nosy, what did your "starve diet" entail throughout 2003? And how did you transition to "off plan" in 2004? Have you been intuitively eating/calorie counting since 2004?

aphil
03-26-2008, 11:42 AM
I don't know if this will help or not...

I know that breakfast is an important meal-BUT-when I eat in the morning, it gets things (and my appetite) going for the entire day. What I mean is, I normally don't eat breakfast until about 10am...and I have lunch around 12:30 or 1pm. Once I eat in the morning, I have to have small meals and snacks about every 2-3 hours to stay satisfied.

If I get up in the morning and have a cup of coffee, but don't actually eat breakfast until 9 or 10, I do much better than if I ate breakfast at 6 or 7am. Once I have my first meal, it is eating every 2-3 hours from that point on. If I ate breakfast at 5:30am like you are, I would want to eat again at around 8am, then around 10:30, and THEN lunch. I would have had 4 small meals/snacks by 1pm instead of my normal two...all because I started out eating so early-and got my appetite stoked so early in the day.

Maybe you are the same way???? Are you starving in the morning when you get up, or are you eating at 5:30 am, just because you have to go to work?

srmb60
03-26-2008, 11:44 AM
LOL! I'd like to try burning too many calories. What a chore ... gosh I guess I'll just have to eat some more ... Nope that's not my problem either.

Hungry as in -weak and faint- or -grumbling tummy?

Don't worry about the protein. That's not too much. Lots of folks here eat between one and two grams per pound of body weight.
And the fiber sounds OK too. As long as it's working for you ;)

Holy physical difficulties Batman! Yup, you really do need to heed your healthcare professionals. It's probably encouraging that they are holding you back because your injuries are newish. That's got to mean that you'll be able to do more as you heal.

I don't really have much for you other than to just 'grow where you're planted', this is your lot right now, work with what you have.

I'll ramble a bit and maybe you can pick what you like and discard the rest.

A little more protein might keep you feeling full longer.

Explain to you doc and physio that you are very concern about muscle wasting. Maybe they're just not used to folks who wholeheartedly seriously really really do want to be slender and fit.

If you feel hungry all the time anyway ... if you cut back a little more it's not going to impede your life much.

What about some of the foods that are touted to increase metabolism? Cold food, hot peppers, hard to digest foods??? I know we mostly assume that their effect might be miniscule at best but then we talk about doing all the little things that add up.

Yup, I'm reach now ... but you seem genuinely interested in optimal health and I'd hate for that enthusiasm to go unrewarded.

carolr3639
03-26-2008, 02:09 PM
Guess I didn't realize it had been so long since you dieted. I have similar hunger problems but I have been taking prednisone for 3 yr. Most days I wake up starving but only eat a little at first. I recently tired a program called Fast-5 where you eat in a 5 hr. period a day. I just couldn't take the hunger. I can maintain pretty good but not able to lose those last 40lb.

chickybird
03-27-2008, 12:22 AM
pounds off, I'm glad I'm not the only one who eats often! I need snacks to keep me going too, and since I teach pre-k, it's hard to snack in front of them (Teacher, watcha eating? Can I have some? Please?)
I try to drink water when I get up and before meals. It helps, but I know where you're coming from. As a person with a pretty bad back, I literally feel your pain. It's hard to know what exercises you can do and be safe. Do you have a physical therapist, or is it too soon after any back surgeries?
Fiber(especially in grains or cereals) make me feel full. To me, I get more full from fiber, not protein.
Just curious, do you take any vitamins?

WebRover
03-27-2008, 04:10 AM
You are eating a lot of nuts. 1 cup a day. That's about 900 calories and almost 30 grams of fat. I'd recommend switching those calories over to something that less calorie dense.

V8 has a lot of sodium in it. Perhaps instead of a large can of V8 either a small can and a raw or steamed veggie or no V-8 and a lot of veggie. The vegetables can be a lot more filling for the same calories.

Perhaps you can eat the eggs and veggies an hour or so after the oatmeal.

The 7:30 snack looks like three snacks in one. Try having just one or two of the items, then waiting and hour or so before the next one.

The yogurt, ranch dressing cottage cheese and milk - are these low-fat or full-fat versions? Makes a big difference in calories and fat.

Mayonnaise piles on the calories really fast - can you substitute mustard, use less? How about putting the meat and cheese on the salad? Or have the sandwich on one slice of bread?

Olive oil is good for you, but it also packs on the calories. Are you measuring how much olive oil you're using? Can you use less but keep the vinegar for flavor? Make sure you're not drowning your salad with dressing. Also your large salad, is that lots of lettuce or some lettuce and lots of vegetables? Lots of vegetables you can put on your salad are filling and low calorie. And since you have to chew on them a lot, your brain gets a chance to recognize you're full (for now).

Can you add some veggies to your cottage cheese snack? Maybe try to add veggies to any meals or snack without them.

I see over seven grain servings in a day. That's a lot if you're trying to reduce or maintain. If you could reduce those to three and replace the calories with vegetables, that could help.
1 cup oatmeal - 2 servings
3 slices whole grain bread - 3 servings
1 cup brown rice - 2 servings
Cookies 100 calories - ? servings

Also, a whole avocado a day seems like a lot.

HTH