Seriously, you know those days when you have breakfast, and then you feel like just something else, like an apple. Or maybe a slice of bread with peanut butter. Then before it’s time for morning tea you are already planning what you are going to eat with your coffee. And you end up having a three course meal for lunch. But you are still hungry!! Why? What is your body trying to tell you on these days? Didn’t you eat enough yesterday? Is your body in storage mode and preparing for winter (like a brown bear feasting on salmon and berries for months to get really fat)?
I can understand that I get really hungry after a big workout or a massive run. There is a reason for the good, old term ‘working up an apetite’. That is what we are actually doing when we are using our bodies physically. Therefore, being on a low calorie diet and working out a shed load, doesn’t work well with your body, because it needs sufficient amounts of energy to be able to perform the workouts. But, when you are just hungry for no reason, what is going on? I’ve been doing a bit of reading around the World Wide Web, and here are my findings (plus a few opinions from my side, of course).
It appears most women are blaming their time of the month for massive gorging. I am not sure if our bodies actually need more energy at this stage or if this is just an excuse to eat chocolate (any excuse is good enough, isn’t it?). Are you actually hungry or do you just want something comforting at this stage? Maybe you have a bit of stomach pain and you convince yourself eating a loaf of bread will help. It probably wont and you are probably not hungry. Have a cup of green tea instead and suck it up! I don’t think this is really a reason for having that eternal hunger some days.
Lack of sleep is another reason for being hungrier. This one makes more sense to me, because when we sleep out bodies recover and rebuilds and basically get the much needed rest to be able to go on with life. Sleep also regulates our hormones. If we don’t get enough deep sleep, our bodies aren’t recovered properly and it may require more energy to get on with the day. Therefore, sleeping lots is essential for good health and even more essential for weight loss. If you want to lose weight in a healthy way, sleep more and eat less. I actually have a friend who lost a significant amount of weight (over 20 kilos) by sleeping lots (and when I say lots, I mean lots. She got home from work and pretty much slept until the next morning). This prevented her from overeating, because she wasn’t actually in an awake state. And she wasn’t really ever hungry, because the only time she was exerting much energy was at work. Now hold on, I am not saying this is the best way of losing weight or recommend you all start sleeping 12-14 hours a day (you might not have many friends in the end), I am just saying she did. And it does make sense that with lack of sleep you will get hungrier. So, 8 hours sleep a night, folks!
I think also if you are generally starving yourself on a daily basis, with a very low calorie diet and not eating enough to feed your muscles and the rest of your body, your body will a) slow right down and burn as little energy as possible because it’s worried about the food supply or b) get really hungry and tell your brain to force you to eat. Because your body needs the energy to function. So when you are really, really hungry one day, think about what you ate yesterday (or the whole week prior). Think about the quality of the food you ate, was it rich in nutrients or just calorie dense empty food such as prepackaged meals and fast ‘food’. Think about what you did yesterday too. Did you do a massive workout? Did you help someone move house (that qualifies as a workout btw – hard work – especially if they life on the 5th floor with no elevator!) or go for a 4 hour walk? If yes, then you probably need some extra energy. Eat!
I am hungry today. It’s only just after breakfast time, but I could still eat a horse I think. I was thinking of the factors that could affect my hunger. Yesterday I did Yoga in the morning, then I was on my feet all day, walking around at 2 exhibitions for about five hours. Afterwards I went to the footy and sat outside freezing for another four hours. We stopped by a birthday on the way home and didn’t end up going to bed before around 1AM. This morning I got up at 7:30AM for a Yoga class. And now I am hungry! When looking at my day yesterday, it really does make sense to me that I would be hungry today, especially when finishing the day with a very short night’s sleep. I will therefore eat today. Not binge or gorge in massive amounts of crap, but eat good, fresh food until I am full. What will you do?