Are You Always Feeling Hungry?

At the moment I think this is a common feeling amongst most people especially if you are at home.

It is so easy to keep going back to your kitchen for more snacks.

It is better to tackle the problem of feeling hungry the natural way. Try to avoid appetite suppressants and diet pills.

Here is some ways that could help:

Eat Enough Protein

Do you get sugar dips especially around 3:30 in an afternoon? You can hear the refrigerator calling your name!!!

Try including more protein in your meals. A high carbohydrate meal can make your energy and blood sugar levels peak and trough. By increasing the amount of protein on your plate, you will help your body convert carbohydrates to sugar more slowly. Try to ensure that 30% of your meal is protein such as chicken, fish, chickpeas, fish and quinoa, snack on nuts, eggs and cheese.

Eat More Fibre

High fibre foods will keep you feeling fuller for longer after your meal. Foods such as brown rice, bran and oats contain soluble fibre, which acts like a sponge and soaks up moisture in the stomach. The fibre swells up making you feel fuller for longer and also helps to release sugars slowly to prevent energy dips. You can also try high fibre apples, avocados, beans, broccoli, nuts and seeds. I do understand it is more about what is in your cupboards at the moment.

Avoid Refined Carbohydrates

Refined carbohydrates such as white bread, pasta, sweets and biscuits are high on the glycaemic index and release their sugars into your system quickly giving a short term energy fix. This is why they leave you feeling hungry again. Choose fibre-rich wholegrains to keep you feeling fuller for longer.

Break Bad Habits

Are you really hungry? When we are tired, bored, stressed or upset we often feel the need to eat. This type of food craving is psychological. Habitual eating such as wanting a dessert after your tea is also known as psychological eating. Another type of craving is physiological, when you are feeling low on energy or feel light-headed, you crave something to satisfy the need quickly, such as biscuits or chocolate. Having an apple or some nuts and seeds would fill the void in the same way and will keep you feeling fuller for longer. Try to have healthy snacks in between your meals to avoid the feeling. Tis should stabilise your blood sugar and shouldn’t experience the hunger pangs as your body knows it won’t be starved.

Keep Hydrated

The brain recognises thirst and hunger as similar sensations. Before you grab something to eat think when did you last have a drink. Try drinking a glass of water and waiting 20 minutes to see if you are still hungry. Try to drink 2 litres of water over the day. this will also stop overeating.

Increase Your Exercise

Exercise helps to prevent cravings and curbs your appetite. Aerobic exercise in particular has been proven to trigger the release of the appetite-suppressing hormone peptide YY. Exercise helps to control blood sugar and the body’s insulin response. Just ensure you eat something nutritious after exercise for example a boiled egg or oatcakes within 30 minutes of exercising, this will help your body to recover. I understand at the moment it is a bit more difficult, but can go out for a run or a daily walk. If you have exercise equipment at home use that or go on YouTube. If there is a will there is a way!!

Even though it is a bit more difficult at the moment you can still help yourself to stop feeling hungry.

Karen x

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What Do you Need To Read On A Food Label?

Food labels can be so confusing, they can make a food sound healthy, but there are some fact you need to be aware of…………

Read The Nutrition Information

The ones to read are total Fat, Saturated Fat, Sugar and Salt.

Look at the 100g information rather than the per portion information as this is the best way to compare products nutritionally otherwise it can be difficult to tell whether the differences you see are down to portion size rather than the actual content of the product.

Fat, saturated fat, sugar and salt are important as these can affect your weight and blood pressure, contributing to the risk of coronary heart disease and stroke.

Read The Ingredients

The majority of pre-packed foods have the ingredients listed on the back of the packet.

Everything that goes into your food will be listed in weight order from being the biggest to the smallest, so it is worth considering that the first item listed will be the largest portion of the food.

Ingredients that are listed further down will be of smaller quantities, but these are still important as vitamins and minerals can be added to foods such as breakfast cereals.

Look At The Type Of Fat And How Much

It is important to check whether the fat is saturated or unsaturated.

Unsaturated fat can be in foods such as nuts , seeds, avocado, oily fish and vegetable oils, these are better for your heart health than the saturated fats. Butter, fatty meats, biscuits, cakes and pastries contain saturated fat. These can increase cholesterol which can then increase coronary heart disease.

Watch Out For Reduced-Fat claims

When you come across low-fat or Reduced-Fat foods they aren’t always the healthiest choices. Sometimes the manufacturers replace the fat with sugar which is not a healthier choice. It can be worth reading the nutrition information to compare the sugar and fat content on the original and the fat reduced product.

You Do Not Need To Count Calories

Calories (Kcal) or Kilojoules (KJ) are a measure of how much energy is in the product. As a guide women need 2000 calories a day and men need around 2500 calories. The exact amounts needed by individuals will vary and the children’s needs will vary even more.

Constant calories counting isn’t necessary, but it is good to be aware which foods are high calorie and that this can vary between the same type of products.

Looking For Sugar On Labels

Sugar can be disguised as other names: honey, syrup, nectar, molasses, fruit juice concentrate.

Anything ending in ‘ose’ such as fructose, glucose and maltose.

If it is listed in the ingredients then it’s added sugar however natural it sounds.

Low sugar means: 5g or less per 100g

High sugar means: 15g or more per 100g

Don’t Forget About Naturally Occurring Sugars

Some foods may be high in sugar, but it is naturally occurring sugar, for example from fruit or milk products. This is less of a problem as the sugar is natural and will come with other nutrients known as fibre or calcium.

Beware Of Salt

Salt is added to many everyday foods, including things you might not think of as being salty like bread, cakes and biscuits. Always check the label.

Too much salt can increase your blood pressure over time, which can increase the risk of developing heart disease and stroke. most of us consume more than the recommended maximum of 6g per day – which is equivalent to a teaspoon.

Low salt means: 0.3 or less per 100g (0.1g sodium or 100mg sodium)

High salt means: 1.5g or more per 100g (or 0.6g sodium or 600mg sodium)

Understanding Portion Size

The nutritional informational for each portion will be on the back of the packet and some packets display the per portion information on the front as well. This will be the manufactures recommendation and this vary between brands.

It is important to remember that your portion size may be different to the manufactures and this can result in you consuming more calories, saturated fat or salt than you actually realise.

Food labels don’t have to be complicated if you know what you are looking for.

Karen x