Managing my appetite, especially when I’m training can be difficult. Work out more and my appetite just seems to grow unreasonably. As promised, this is some more information from Matt Fitzgerald‘s book- Racing Weight. Being able to tell the difference between actual belly hunger (physical hunger) or head hunger (hedonic hunger) can be a struggle sometimes.
Belly hunger signs are the desire to eat because of rumbling in the stomach where head hunger is eating just for pleasure. Fitzgerald explained that actual belly hunger is marked by an empty stomach, an increase of hungry hormones-ghrelin, and low blood glucose. Head hunger is not actual hunger! It is temptations, cravings, habit, or even emotional state. We are all fully guilty of eating something we shouldn’t, but it looks so good.
So what determines how much we eat you ask? Fullness. Portions. Environment. There are levels of fullness that include just barely eating enough to being uncomfortable. Each individual needs to find the acceptable level proper for him/her. Portions especially in America are drastically larger than need to be and very calorie dense. Environment plays a part in this as we tend to eat the same amount of food as those we surround ourselves with no matter if we would eat that portion regularly.
Try not to over eat. It’s much easier said then done. I can stand by this. Learning the difference between belly and head hunger can be a huge help. Listen to your body. What does it need? Clean out the fridge and pantry and try to keep healthy foods and snacks stocked to make easy decisions when you are hungry.
Learn what your body needs!