It’s important to listen to your body when eating. A big reason why we end up overeating past the point of satiety is the delayed communication between our stomach and brains – and the fact that many of us eat too fast.
The stomach can take up to 20 minutes to send the message to the brain that it is full, therefore we just continue to stuff it sometimes to the point of feeling cramps.
This is not good if you aim to maintain or lose weight. To avoid that and to help send positive messages between stomach and brain, even prior to eating, there are some ways to trick your stomach and brain into feeling full.
1. Eat breakfast
Do not skip breakfast! Your metabolism needs a kick start daily and do make sure to eat a protein rich breakfast.
2. DRINK WATER
Drink a glass of water prior to each meal and work up to a daily total of 8 glasses.
Chewing gum tricks your stomach into thinking you are eating food. Stick to the sugar free ones!
4. BRUSH YOUR TEETH
Who wants to eat when their mouth feels fresh, minty and clean? Remember to brush your tongue too.
5. HAVE A NAP
After a nap you will feel energized and your stomach acid will be less, as a result you should not feel hungry.
6. AVOID FOOD
This does not mean you should not eat! The delicious scents or sight of food can trigger hunger pangs even when you aren’t hungry and the urge to eat will be strong so avoid hanging out at places that carry food.
Eating small size meals during the course of the day keeps your metabolism high since food will always be in your stomach. It’s better to eat six small meals instead of three big ones.
8. EAT SLOWLY
Eating slowly allows more time for that important stomach to brain communication to complete. Chew each mouthful carefully, savoring all the different flavors. Enjoy eating.
9. DROP YOUR FORK
Lay your fork down in between bites. What this deliberate movement does is naturally slow down your eating process as per #8. You might even have a sip of water each time before you pick up your fork.
10. SNACK ON HEALTHY FOODS
Ideally it’s best to eat fresh raw vegetables and fruits like cucumbers, oranges, avocados, celery, carrots, and radish.
11. WATCH YOUR CARBS
Reduce the amount of carb that you consume. Carbs are converted into sugar which in turn stimulates insulin which then arouses hunger.
12. KEEP YOUR PROTEIN LEAN
Protein digests slower than carbs therefore, your body will favor a lean piece of meat versus a load of carbs.
13. EAT MORE FIBER
Foods high in fiber require more chewing and you eat less since they are very filling and keep you satiated for longer periods than other foods. Another benefit of fibrous foods is that they help with digestion.
14. EAT MORE EGGS
Eggs are high in protein and low-fat, the perfect snack to help stave off hunger.
15. WORK OUT
This one can be tricky. Avoid exercising as a means to burn calories and kill hunger – burning calories will make you hungry. Instead, do some yoga or go for a walk to get your adrenaline kicking not to boost your hunger.
16. DRINK APPLE CIDER VINEGAR
ACV has been a reliable dietary aid for many years now. If you don’t mind the taste, drink two teaspoons before each meal or add to a glass of drinking water that you are going to drink prior to your meal as per #2.
17. AVOID SALT
Salt leads to dehydration and thirst is commonly mistaken for hunger. Stay away from salty snacks like popcorns and peanuts.
18. AVOID SUGAR
Sugar is burned more quickly than other nutrients in our bodies. Be sure to avoid snacks that are low fat but high in its sugar content with either added or hidden sugars.
19. AVOID CAFFEINE
Caffeine is thought by some to be an appetite suppressant but just like sugar, it causes “crashes” after the buzz so avoid drinking it on an empty stomach. Enjoy it with a healthy snack or meal instead.
20. AVOID ALCOHOL
Alcohol supplies empty calories and it typically gives you the munchies. Additionally, it dulls the senses and lessens your inhibitions so don’t let it test the power of your will against hunger.
21. EAT MINTS
Ensure they are low in sugar, long-lasting mints that you can suck on, don’t bite! It keeps your mouth active and your stomach thinks it’s being fed.
22. CHEW ICE
Similar to sucking on mints, your tummy and brain will think you’re eating food.
23. TIGHTEN YOUR ABS
Otherwise known as “sucking in your belly”, compresses and contracts the muscles of your abdomen so you’ll be concentrating on maintaining your tight muscles rather than the hunger pangs. Plus this helps with tightening the tummy area so it’s a win-win.
24. MANAGE STRESS
Stress is one of the leading causes of overeating because you tend to lose focus of your diet or weight loss plan due to your head being preoccupied with other problems and stressful stuff.
25. KEEP yourself BUSY
How many times when we have nothing to do, do we find ourselves heading to the kitchen for a “snack”? Yeah, lots of times. Avoid letting inactivity and boredom trick you into thinking about food and turn on the hunger pangs.
26. Go Chopsticks
Eat with chopsticks. Western foods aren’t designed for eating with chopsticks so unless you are skilled in using them, you will naturally eat more slowly – allowing time for your stomach to tell your brain it is full.