Many people no longer understand their own natural hunger cues. We eat because the clock says it’s time. Or we don’t eat at all. We eat because we’re bored, sad, or anxious. We eat because we’re celebrating or socializing. It’s easy to lose touch with our body’s natural hunger cues. Do you even know when you’re hungry anymore? The next time you eat, I’d like you to take a minute to listen to your body. Instead of going all day without eating because ” you don’t have time” or eating every 3 hours because “that’s what you’re supposed to do,” think about hunger. How do you know you’re hungry? The body is an amazing thing. It will tell you when you need to eat. Listen to it.
Here are some tips courtesy of Precision Nutrition:
Just before eating:
Are you physically hungry? Pause and check in. Look for signals like a rumbling stomach, lightheadedness, irritability, etc.
You want to be around a 7 out of 10 on the hunger scale.
HOUR 0 Immediately after eating
To be 80% full, shoot for about a 2 or 3 out of 10 on the hunger scale. Pause for 15 – 20 minutes before you eat more.
This will give your brain time to catch up. You want to feel satisfied, not stuffed
HOUR 1 One hour after finishing
You should still feel physically satisfied with no desire to eat another meal.
HOUR 2 Two hours after finishing
You may start to feel a little hungry, like you could eat something, but the feeling isn’t overwhelming.
HOUR 3 Three to four hours after finishing
Check in. You may be getting a bit hungry, perhaps a 4 to 6 out of 10. If you’re around a 7, eat. Not really hungry yet? That’s OK. Follow your body cues.
HOUR 4 Four or more hours after finishing
You’re probably quite hungry, like nothing is getting between you and the kitchen. If you’re around a 7 or higher, eat. Not really hungry yet? That’s OK. Keep checking in with your body. You may find you need to
act fast once your body decides to be hungry so be prepared with a healthy and quick option, just in case.
Remember, you don’t have to eat because it’s time. Listen to your body. Pay attention to what it’s telling you. If your hunger is at a 7 or above, eat. Stop when you’re 80% full or a 2-3 on the hunger scale. This will take some practice. Don’t forget, it takes 15-20 minutes for the stomach to send the brain the full signal! Try checking in with your hunger cues and let me know how it works!