How can you tell if you are REALLY hungry? Blood sugar changes can dramatically influence our levels of hunger.
The idea of having to eat every 2-3 hours is not a rule. In fact, our ancestors did not have the luxury of eating 6 meals a day. Certainly no one was screaming “watch out – your metabolism will slow down!”
It’s simple to say, just eat when you are hungry. Sure. Ever had an afternoon when you hear that call for chocolate?
Studies have shown that we can take people who are not hungry and make them hungry by simply showing them movies about food. I have met people for a meal and not been hungry until the actual sight of food.
On the flip side, people who are hungry can lose their hunger feeling when they saw an intense movie. If we are that easily shifted, then it only seems logical we could implement some of the distractions for ourselves.
Our level of hunger may also vary by the type of food that is available. If it is not as appealing, we may decide we weren’t very hungry after all. Have you ever thought “my hunger just passed” when you don’t have access to food? Have you noticed by the time you are able to eat, sometimes you are not even hungry anymore?
4 questions you can ask yourself before you decide to eat:
1) What else is going on? Are you avoiding something you do not want to do? Are you bored? Are you feeling stressed?
2) Would ANY food be satisfying right now, or are you craving something or being tempted by a certain food? I like to ask myself if I am hungry for a salad or anything clean and healthy. If the answer is no, then I am probably not really that hungry.
3) When and what did you last eat? If you ate a decent meal a couple of hours ago or a snack in the past half hour, your body does not likely need additional fuel. It’s like stopping at a gas station and filling up your tank. Then driving 15 miles and seeing another station and thinking, “oh, I must need more gas”.
4) Would a glass of water be satisfying? Sometimes we are only thirsty or need a distraction. Hunger that leaves as fast as it shows up is likely not real hunger.
The key with pre diabetes and blood sugar stabilization is different for everyone. When you are eating the right kinds of foods, your sugar should stay in good balance. However, snacking may work best for some people. Others do well with longer periods of “fasting”. I find with any type of adrenal stress or hormone imbalance, fasting can increase blood sugar, but you would have to be testing to know. Again, each individual is impacted differently – this is why we TEST! Know your numbers, own your health!!
What are some tricks you use to overcome bouts of false hunger?