Hunger is a natural human phenomenon necessary for survival. Feeling hungry is natural and healthy. But sometimes, cravings and thirst could mislead the interpretation of hunger.
It could also be a side effect of certain medications and medical conditions. Such frequent urge to eat is also accompanied by the risk of obesity.
For several health reasons, it is important to control hunger sometimes. Several pills, medications, and treatments help curb appetite. Similarly, easy-to-follow steps and care at home may also help.
To find out how you could stop frequent hunger pangs, follow the article till the end.
- 1 Best Ways To Reduce Hunger
- 1.1 Drink More Water
- 1.2 Eat Foods High In Fiber
- 1.3 Load Up On Proteins
- 1.4 Practice Mindful Eating
- 1.5 Cut Off Distractions
- 1.6 Do Not Eat Immediately When Hungry
- 1.7 Eat At The Same Time
- 1.8 Opt For Healthy Snacking
- 1.9 Get Enough Sleep
- 1.10 Learn The Importance Of Dinnerware
- 1.11 Manage Your Stress
- 1.12 Maintain A Food Journal
- 1.13 Eat More Solids
- 1.14 Have Some Ginger
- 1.15 Exercise Daily
- 1.16 Replace Normal Tea Or Beverages With Green Tea
- 1.17 Give Yerba Mate A Shot
- 1.18 Do Not Starve
- 2 Conclusion
Best Ways To Reduce Hunger
Drink More Water
Water intake could impact your appetite. Sometimes the brain misinterprets thirst as hunger. If you stay hydrated throughout the day, such instances could be avoided.
Moreover, drinking water right before meals suppresses hunger. You might feel fuller and subconsciously reduce your food intake.
If you practice this in the longer run, your appetite will decrease slowly without much effort.
Eat Foods High In Fiber
Fiber is vital for a healthy bowel movement and is also slow to be digested. If you eat fiber-rich foods, they would stay longer in the gut preventing growling and untimely hunger.
Fiber is also linked with increased secretion of hunger-suppressing hormones. High-fiber foods constitute the most filling meals. Beans, chickpeas, and lentils promote satiety for longer hours.
These are also rich in macronutrients making it a win-win combination.
Load Up On Proteins
Proteins are not just a crucial macronutrient but also promote satiety. People with increased protein intake experienced reduced hunger due to suppressed hunger hormones.
According to a study people with high protein intake(eggs) experienced less hunger than those on a low protein diet (cereals).
If you are vegetarian, there are still high chances of getting a good amount of proteins. Beans, lentils, and tofu provide the same benefits as chicken breast and eggs.
Practice Mindful Eating
Mindful eating is a technique of monitoring your food habits and eating only in necessary amounts.
To break it down into simpler words, eat the needful. Sometimes, we tend to eat pizzas, burgers, and ice creams even when we do not need them.
It is just a matter of moments before we crave something and eat it. Mindful eating has some key aspects like enjoying your meal and focusing on it.
Embedding your senses of smell and taste helps appreciate aroma and flavors. In the process, you eat slowly and listen to your body cues.
Eating slowly is also a part of mindful eating. Our brain takes 15-20 minutes to recognize the feeling of fullness.
Chewing properly and enjoying the food gives the brain enough time to process if you are still hungry. Practicing this simple technique may affect your eating habits for good.
Cut Off Distractions
You might enjoy watching TV or scrolling through social media while munching on some food.
But this assists in a lack of focus. Cutting off these distractions and focusing only on the food help recognize hunger and fullness.
You are also likely to differentiate between hunger and cravings. This practice could be counted as an extended part of mindful eating.
Do Not Eat Immediately When Hungry
The hunger hormone ghrelin is at its peak for 10-15 minutes. If you eat immediately when hunger hits hard, you may end up eating more. If you wait for about 20 minutes, ghrelin will slow down.
Eat At The Same Time
Have you experienced jet lag when flying abroad? The science behind this is not difficult to explain.
Our body follows a natural cycle and grows habitual to it. Sudden changes may not go well with the body initially. Similar is the case with eating.
If we train our bodies well by eating at a particular time, the hormones will be regulated accordingly. Therefore, the chances of untimely or overeating will automatically decrease.
Opt For Healthy Snacking
Snacking is not a bad habit. However, how you choose your snacks might be where things are going wrong.
Eating a bag of chips or eating processed foods is always tempting. Unfortunately, this treat to your taste buds ruins the hard work you put in to keep yourself maintained.
Unhealthy foods provide high amounts of sodium, trans fats, and calories. Replacing these with healthy filling snacks like olives, chickpea salad or a fruit bowl may provide you with dietary benefits.
It will ensure that you attain your daily required value of macronutrients with far fewer calories.
It will also reduce cravings by boosting satiety. Overall, you will be able to reduce your appetite without being prone to deficiencies.
Get Enough Sleep
Sleep and appetite are correlated aspects. Sleep deprivation may affect eating patterns. According to a study relationship between lack of sleep and the risk of obesity.
Generally, adults who sleep less than 7 hours tend to eat more. It was also noticed that subjects with less sleep had high levels of ghrelin- the hunger hormone and also leptin.
It results in more cravings and increased hunger. Getting a quality sleep of 7-9 hours for adults and 8-12 hours for children might keep dietary habits under control.
Learn The Importance Of Dinnerware
Cutlery is a materialistic factor affecting appetite. Using large plates and big spoons tricks the mind into seeing the food as less than the actual amount.
Surveys observed that when people use bigger dinnerware, they eat more than their appetite without even recognizing it.
Using smaller spoons assists in smaller bites. In this way, you eat less amount of food but the number of bites makes you feel full.
When eating with your hands, take smaller bites and chew properly at a slow pace.
Manage Your Stress
Stress is also an obesity-causing factor. Although it affects different people in different ways, some people experience more hunger when stressed.
It is due to increased cortisol levels. Cortisol is a stress hormone that might trigger hunger pangs.
You might even eat too much due to a lack of focus and it goes unnoticed. Stress could simultaneously decrease hormones that boost satiety.
Practicing yoga, meditation, or indulging in stress management programs might reduce stress-induced hunger. You will gain better control over your senses in the process.
Maintain A Food Journal
Writing an account of your day in a diary is exciting and keeps a check on your schedule. Why not try it with food?
Writing all that you eat, and the quantity and time of eating will give a deeper insight into your dietary habits.
You could observe the types of food you crave and at what time you are vulnerable to falling for these carvings.
Writing the times you overate will help reduce such instances. Also, mentioning the times you successfully dodged hunger pangs will encourage you.
Eat More Solids
Solids are another tricky way to keep you full. Solids are thick in texture and require more chewing.
The work you put into chewing properly does not go in vain. Our brain takes into account the quantity of food and the chewing process to interpret the sense of fullness.
Liquids or soft foods are easy to gulp in and could be consumed in large bites. It might lead to overeating and untimely hunger.
Solids also remain in touch with taste buds for a long leaving behind a flavor that boosts fullness.
Liquids also lead to ignorance as you might be calculating all the calories of solids but skipping the ones you get through drinks.
Have Some Ginger
Ginger adds a great punch of flavor to food. It is also an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory-rich herb.
However, recently it was found that a mix of ginger and peppermint curbs appetite and helps regulate hunger. Nevertheless, there is not enough evidence to support this property of ginger.
Exercises, especially high-intensity workout routines, aid in reducing appetite. Heavy workouts just before meals could be beneficial.
Ghrelin experienced a drop after exercising. Somewhat similar is the case with aerobic exercises/ cardio.
Post-workout, hormones that promote fullness are at their peak. You might have observed that you do not crave anything unhealthy right after a workout.
Your cravings are in control, so that is the best time to fill your plate with the required amounts of nutritious foods.
Keep in mind that this impact is also subjective. If you feel more hungry after your workout, wait for a while to eat.
Replace Normal Tea Or Beverages With Green Tea
Green teas are sure to reap some benefits when prepared and consumed correctly. They are antioxidant-rich and suppress hunger naturally.
Drinking a cup of green tea before meals or in the gap between two meals could reduce your food intake without starving. Prepare it fresh and consume it hot without artificial sweeteners.
Give Yerba Mate A Shot
Yerba mate is another beverage that resembles tea. It contains more antioxidants than green tea and is delicious.
When combined with a good workout routine, it may reduce hunger and lighten up your mood.
Do Not Starve
One of the most common mistakes people make while practicing hunger management is starving. While controlling hunger, it is important to eat a healthy nutritious meal.
If you restrict too many calories, you might end up eating more and increase your body weight.
You might have observed this on cheat days. It is better to occasionally enjoy your favorite food but within limits.
Controlling your diet and having a cheat day will ruin the process entirely. If you are guilty of doing the same, learn to control and more importantly forgive yourself.
Otherwise, the guilt of a cheat meal might make you eat so much more.
Cravings come in naturally. Hunger is a big game that regulates appetite. Sometimes, for good, you need to reduce hunger.
Except for pills, natural methods like better food choices, exercise, and monitoring your dietary habits may help.
On top of all, remember it will be a slow change that requires patience. Enjoy the process as it will be gradual. Cherish the progress.