Chances are you’ve experienced hunger pangs. It’s normal for your body to send a signal to your brain saying “Time to eat! Refuel now!”. It normally happens when we haven’t eaten for a few hours or when we’ve recently expended a LOT of energy.
What would you do, however, if you felt hungry throughout the day and yet, you just finished eating an hour ago and the most energy you expended was walking to the vending machine at work or folding some laundry at home?
You might be tempted to search for a pill or cure, something to quell the pangs of hunger…especially if you are steadily gaining weight (and it’s showing up around your belly making you feel as un-sexy as ever.)
Instead of looking for a magic pill to suppress your appetite, look to make some meaningful changes in your life that will truly make you feel better, look better and be healthier (and feeling sexy again!).
Here are some tips that will help you feel satisfied with an appropriate amount of food leading to you feeling great:
- Get 7-9 hours of quality sleep. This is probably the most important thing you can do to get your appetite back to normal. It’s also the hardest to get under control, but well worth the effort. Improper hormonal shifts happen when you don’t get enough quality sleep, causing you to be hungry and crave fat storing starchy foods and sweets leading you to want more starchy foods and sweets! Making sleep a priority will solve 98% of your problems (food, relationship, health, weight gain and more). Since sleep is highly undervalued in our society, it’s easy to make yourself believe that you are just weak if you seem to need and want more than five hours per night. Don’t put this number one tip off for another night!
- Drink water. Most people are walking around dehydrated and you sometimes confuse the need for water with hunger. Aim to drink half your body weight in ounces of water. If you are greatly overweight and that number seems daunting, aim for 80 ounces per day. Herbal tea can count towards this amount. (Make sure your herbal tea does not contain soy.)
- Eat lean protein (like turkey, chicken, fish, lean cuts of beef or eggs) and vegetables with every meal and snack. You’ll be more energetic and your body will run and function at a more optimal level.
- Decrease the amount of stress you perceive. Yes, you read correctly – perceive. Most of our emotional stress is self-induced. You can only control your actions and your perception. Before you take on emotional stresses, decide if is something you have control over (and if you do, take action!). If you don’t have control – stop making it an event in your brain and move on. Plus, high stress levels make many women eat mindlessly and go for the belly- fat loving starches and sweets (again!).
- Do something joyful every day. Yes, today and every day. I’m guilty of not doing this one every day and I’m changing that. Although I exercise at least 5-6 times per week and find it enjoyable, I also know I need to do more. What do you find joy in? Make a list of different things that take different amounts of time. Maybe buying and smelling fresh flowers (a sinful pleasure to some, but so worth it!). Perhaps you like to read for pleasure, but lately you only read for work. Take 30 minutes to yourself and read a trashy novel or thrilling drama. Go for a walk, play with your dog, visit a friend, take your grandmother to lunch, journal, play kickball with your kids, hula-hoop in your kitchen or dance in your living room. Do something that puts a smile on your face and you look forward to doing everyday.
- Get outside. Go for a walk. Moving your body and getting some sun and fresh air will do amazing things for your body and mind. Find the time for this and if you don’t feel like you have the energy to walk around the block, go to your mailbox and back. Make it short, make it easy and gradually increase the distance.
Following these few tips will get you 80% to your goal, make you feel fantastic, full of energy and not looking for a magic pill that only messes with your hormones.
If you think you need help in figuring out how to implement these steps into your life, give Her Fitness a call today. We’ll help you get started on a path to better health so you can feel great and look great!