100 lb. Club - Dang it, I'm just plain hungry

View Full Version : Dang it, I'm just plain hungry

11-11-2005, 03:32 AM
I'm not an emotional eater.....I don't eat when I'm sad, depressed or lonely. I eat because I'm just flat out hungry. And hard as I try, celery sticks and water just don't feel me up. I've tried eating something every two hours, I've tried various types of foods such as protein, protein and carbs, carbs, fruits, veggies. I'm willing to try anything someone may have to offer. My brother told me if I'm going to lose weight I just have to get used to and deal with the hunger. I'm not sure if I can! :?:

11-11-2005, 09:29 AM
I don't know if your body will let you. If you are hungry all the time you can ignore it to a certain extent but eventually the hunger signal will drive you to eat. Or trick you into eating what ever the case may be. I have the same problem and have found that picking foods with low energy density and high water content seems to help. I eat a lot of vegetables and I cook them in interesting ways. In fact I would say that the majority of may daily food intake is vegetables along with some fruit and legumes. I find I can get a lot more food for the same calories than if I ate meat or a lot of grains. To get started I bought several cook books just for vegetables and learned new cooking skills. That was rally important because like most Americans my vegetable cooking skills were limited and had little variety. The cookbook "Vegetables Every Day" is a good one. Also one called "Fresh From the Vegetarian Slow Cooker" is excellent. I have made almost every recipe in that book and they are all wonderful. There is that diet plan Volumnetrics which I have read about and I believe is based on the theory of food volume and water content. I have never read it so I can recommend it for sure. I started eating this way about a year ago when I was taking Anatomy and Physiology class and also a Chemistry class. It just seen that the science supported it more than most other eating plans.

I have never found the filling up on water works for anything but making me run to the bathroom every 15 minutes. I guess other peoples experience is different but I find filling up on water has zero effect on hunger. I read recently that people who have been obese get a large dopamine release when they have consumed a certain amount of food. The body seems to want to stay at that level and is sluggish at putting out dopamine unless the accustom amount of food is consumed. Over time one can retrain their body to get the same amount of dopamine with less food but it takes effort and consistent eating patterns. Another way to trigger the release of dopamine is through exercise. I tend to believe this is true because I have notice that when I exercise for at least 45 minutes to one hour at a real sweat I seem to not be as hungry all day. I'm not sure but it seems possible that as obese people our stomachs are used to holding a certain amount of content before the stretch receptors tell the brain we are full and dopamine gets really pumping. If we do not get full the stretch respirators are not activated and we are hungry again in a short period of time even if we have consumed a lot of calories. That is why I think staying full with a low energy density foods would work. It seems some people get that feeling of being full from fats and proteins. That has not been my experience but everyone is different. I found that I just consumed too many calories eating that way to lose weight.

11-11-2005, 09:41 AM
Please don't virtual slap me but drink more water.
Alot of people mistake dehydration for hunger.
I read that somewhere- either here or somewhere else.
Make sure you are counting your calories right. If you are getting too little then you may actually be doing your body negative instead of good.

11-11-2005, 09:45 AM
Something I did in my liquid fasting days that helped me feel full was to drink a hot drink. I always chose boullion or tea. For some reason, hot drinks satiated me.

11-11-2005, 10:11 AM
Here's the thing about the hunger--it will go away! Once your body gets used to having smaller portions, you will find that the hunger goes away. If you can, give it whirl for a week and see how you feel. I have done it in the past--our stomachs are so stretched out from eating too much all the time that they need a few days to shrink back to a more normal size. I hope that makes sense :dizzy: In any case, good luck!

11-11-2005, 11:29 AM
I'm with Jill. That has been my experience as well. I get full twice as fast (at least!) these days as I did back in the day. It makes my stomach hurt to just think about eating things in the quantity I used to. Your body will just take a little while to adjust to the new program.

11-11-2005, 12:24 PM
I agree with the others that, after an adjustment period, the hunger does usually go away. During my first few years (yes, I've been at this a loooong time), I would still go through periods of hunger. It's like my body was shifting gears, even though my food and activity routine hadn't changed. So, I know how very hard it is to deal with real physical hunger, but just keep reminding yourself that it WILL pass. Other things to remind yourself of is that you've lived a long time filling yourself up in order to avoid even a hint of hunger; learning to live with a little twinge is just another lesson along the road to moderate eating habits. Whenever you're hungry, put a GOOD spin on it: My body is adjusting to having an ADEQUATE amount of food rather than an overabundance; whenever I'm hungry that's a tangible sign that I'm burning off fat; etc.

Also, here are some tips for dealing with hunger in more practical ways:

First, make sure you're not cutting calories too drastically. If I've increased my activity level, for example, I expect a little extra hunger here and there; if, however, I'm ravenous or get hungry WAY before food time, then that tells me I do need some extra fuel. If you're not sure how many calories you need, take a look at the calculator here: http://www.jimkaras.com/loss_math01.cfm. These calculators are just a rough estimate, and lots of folks find they aren't precise for THEM, but the number they give is a good place to start.
Do make sure you're getting enough protein; I don't eat a high-protein diet but if I'm going through a hunger period adding a little more than usual helps more than anything else. I keep some of the EAS AdvantEdge protein drinks in my fridge; that particular type has only 100 calories but is nearly 100% protein, and they're handy to grab or take to work for a late-afternoon boost.
Eat something at LEAST every 3 to 4 hours. The longer you wait between feedings, the more you are setting yourself up for big hunger. By keeping your body steadily supplied with fuel, your blood sugar levels will stay on an even keel. You won't get as hungry between meals, you won't be as tempted to overeat when you DO eat, and you won't feel that after-meal stupor from huge blood sugar spikes. This pattern of eating will help you stay in the middle of the starving-to-stuffed scale, and you'll actually start to re-define what it means to be "hungry" and "full." Your goal is to always feel "satisfied" rather than "full," and by doing that you experience BOTH extremes less.
Use those non-starchy vegetables! Not just plain celery! If I'm starving I will steam a pile of vegetables and dress with lemon juice or fancy vinegar. Any raw vegetable is good with salsa. There are lots of soups you can make with nothing more than non-starchy vegetables and broth (get low-sodium always, though!). If you don't care for vegetables, well ... it's something to work on.

11-11-2005, 02:07 PM
Thank you, thank you, thank you for the tips! I will try my best this week to stay a little on the hungry side and see if my body will adjust. And f(x), thanks for the veggie ideas. I'll check on that cookbook. I'm SO bored with steaming and stir frying the same ole' veggies all the time. I'd like to try eggplant, etc. but have no idea how to cook different stuff.

11-11-2005, 02:16 PM
Sorry to be the bearer of bad news here but don't count on it working in a week. I do agree with the above post. It does go away. I don't get near as hungry as I used to and when I do eat I get full a lot quicker. However it took probably a good solid month or more for my body to adjust to not getting as much food. So yes the first few weeks and maybe the first 2 months you are going to be hungry a lot of the time. There are other benifits though. I find with a little hunger the rest of my body feels much better. My mind is more clear and I am much more alert.

11-11-2005, 03:02 PM
I'm 12 weeks in on my 'journey' and find that I still get hungry. I have to play around with my meals and find what satisfies me the longest.
I learned long ago that I am hungriest at 10 a.m. I plan a filling snack like oatmeal or yogurt or a bagel during that time. I also find that if I don't eat enough in the a.m. hours that I tend to eat alot when Iget off work. I have to make sure to eat a mid morning snack and a late afternoon snack to get through to the next meal.
You might just have to keep track of your hungriest times and plan a snack for that time.
Also someone mentioned protein- quaker has a weight control oatmeal with 7 grams of protein. Protein makes you not crave as much. Not saying to jump on a high protein plan but add more in. Also eat more whole grains and not as much 'white' food. Whole grains are better. So if you eat cereal, breads etc... keep that in mind.
Some veges actually will increase your cravings- I think brocolli or brocoli is the one I'm thinking of.
I personally find that splitting meals up every two hours eating something- you can break up meals and its keeps your blood sugar more level.

11-11-2005, 03:20 PM
I eat broccoli many times a week and it certainly doesn't make me more hungry.

11-11-2005, 04:48 PM
I've never heard of broccoli increasing cravings either. It's one of my fave veggies, and jam packed full of good stuff.

I heartily agree with eating whole-wheat and whole-grain foods in preference to the white stuff. I hardly ever get hungry eating 1500-1600 kcals a day. In my experience, it's processed foods that are more likely to trigger cravings for me. I rarely eat pre-packaged or takeaway foods, and when I do, I find myself feeling hungry much quicker afterwards than if I stick with the fresh stuff and make it myself. It's cheaper and healthier too!

I've also discovered that fat is my friend. I don't mean great dollops of butter or anything, but things like oz almonds, or a tsp. olive oil on my veggies is plenty to give me that "satisfied" feeling for a good while after I've eaten. For this very reason (and the palatability aspect too), I tend to shy away from non-fat versions of my favourite things, and just have smaller portions of the full-fat one. It works well for me. YMMV.