Managing Your Hunger

When your body talks, Listen!

About 60% to 75% of your daily calories are expended just keeping up your bodily functions.  They're used to maintain your body's temperature, for regulating your nerves, for breathing, and to keep your heart beating, as well as to nourish and repair your muscles.  A simple rule you can keep in mind is to:  Eat when you are hungry, stop when you're not!

Don't skip meals:  Avoid slowing down your metabolism.  You should be fueling your body 4 to 5 times a day.  Eat BREAKFAST!  It's the most important meal of the day. Why?

Break the fast = breakfast!  You should also wake up to a sizeable breakfast because it is the first taste of food after a full night of rest and repair.  Eating a healthy breakfast gets your whole system going both your brain and body will work better.  Having a full tummy first thing gets rid of all those sugar and fat laden junk food attacks.  Why?  Because you start your day off satisfied and full of nutrious delicious food.  you body doesn't need to crave anything becaues you fed it well. 

Eat oatmeal- its the champion of all breakfast foods because it regulates your blood sugar and keeps you fuller longer.  Once cup of oatmeal contains 8 grams of fiber, that's 1/3 of the dietary reference intake. 
Tip:  Remember to match a lean protein and a compex carb.  Oatmeal is a wonderful complext car, so match it with its date!  Try 1/2 cup oatmeal topped with 2 tbsp ground flaxseed and a handful of berries, with 2 egg whites on the side.  Your body will be amazed!

Ok so back to skipping meals (sorry for my little side bar).  Skipping meals doesn't help you cut calories.  Only smaller portion sizes and the kinds of foods you eat will.  Choose meal items that are lean protein and complex carbs for a even calorie burn without sugar crashes!

Water Burns!  Drink 2-3 liters of water per day.  Get a re-useable water bottle and add lemon, lime and cucumbers or any other fruit you can think of.  Carry it with you everywhere!  Sometimes we mistake hunger for thirst.  If you are hungry and its between meals then drink a glass of water and wait 20 minutes and then if you are still hungry then it's truely hunger!  Without enough water in your system, your metabolism slows down andyou end up burning fewer calories. You should be taking bathroom breaks every 4 hours!  For me it seems like every 20 minutes!

Catch more ZZZ's:  Getting too little sleep triggers hormonal changes that lead to an increased appetite.  Also sleep deprivation will cause your body to have more cravings for foods high in sugar and fat.  If you're tired, often you won't have the energy to workout.  So be sure to get enough sleep!

Don't let your hunger manage you!
When you are hungry, it's easy to let your stomach do the talking.  Make sure you take control over you hunger before it gets out of control.  Here are a few tips:
Drink water 30 minutes before every meal.  Like I said before, sometimes hunger is disguised as thirst.  Water will not only ease the hunger temporarily, it will also help you reduce the amount you eat at each meal.  Drink water instead of sodas, fruit juices, and sugary drinks during meals and you won't be adding empty calories.
You don't need to eat everything on your plate.  Avoid overeating just because its there.  I always ask for a doggie bag before I begin my meal.  I box up half of my meal and take it home to my husband or I save it for lunch the next day.  You can always split your meal between 2 people.  Restaurants always offer over sized portions, no one should EVER eat that much food or needs to eat that much!
Hold the dessert?  YES!  Wait until 20 minutes after you've eating the main course.  If your still hungry, treat yourself to fresh fruit or sorbet.  Why would you want to undo all of your hard work with one dessert!
Veggies on the side, please.  If your meal doesn't come with veggies get a side or or ask for a garden salad.  You'll eat more nutrients that'll burn of easily.  Also, make sure you ask for you veggies to be prepared with no additional oils or butter.  The veggies are good but when you smother them in butter and oil you add a ridiculous amount of calories!  Also, ask for the dressing on the side and leave of the croutons and cheese!
Eat Slowly.  Chew 20 times before you swallow.  this one is very hard for me to do because I am a busy mom and I never know how long I have to eat until someone screams, throws something or needs my attention.  I am always gobbling down my food!  But you should allow your taste buds to savor you food and it will allow your body to digest your food properly.  You are less likely to over eat when you eat slowly!

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