You've just had one sumptuous, nutritious dinner five minutes back. But as you sit down to watch TV, you're again feeling the need for something sweet or salty.
Why is it happening? Whereas we should feel full, our cravings never fail to get the best of us and in the next half an hour, an entire block of chocolate disappears. If this applies pretty well to you, then you're not alone.
There can be plenty of reasons for which we feel hungry even when we've eaten. They range from issues that are not necessarily under your control, like thyroid, to lifestyle issues such as high stress levels to lack of sleep, that you might actually alter.
And there steps in the necessity to identify our triggers in order to stay happy and healthy.
So, in order to help you better comprehend why you're constantly feeling hungry, in this article we're jotting down the 5 most probable reasons along with a cure for each. We'll, as well, find strategies to curb emotional eating and regulate appetite.
The causes behind you always feeling hungry are:
1. Your Body Actually Needs Food
2. You Didn't Have A Big-Enough Breakfast
3. Stop Being So Stressed
4. You're Not Sleeping Enough
5. You're Not Drinking Sufficient Water
1. Your Body Actually Needs Food-: Sometimes, one of the things that signals hunger is our decreasing blood glucose levels. In those moments, look for signs like if the hunger is hitting in slowly (as emotional hunger tends to come on quickly). Or listen for those stomach growls and check if you're still hungry even after drinking a big glass of water.
Solution- Try eating regular, nutritious meals and snacks throughout the day. And also include more dietary fat from whole food sources in your diet.
2. You Didn't Have A Big-enough Breakfast:- Mothers are right: breakfast, indeed, is the most important meal of the day. A long-term study by the University of Cambridge indicated that people consuming 300 calories for breakfast gained twice as much weight when compared to those eating 500 calories or more.
Reason? Having a filling breakfast incurs smaller rises in blood sugar and insulin, all day long, which implies fewer sudden food cravings.
Solution- Add protein to your meal like sausages with eggs. Also, having leafy greens helps quash cravings as they're high in vitamin K, an insulin-regulating nutrient.
3. Stop Being So Stressed:- So, the relation between stress and hunger is a bit complex; but let us simplify it for you. When we're in stress, our body produces hormones like adrenaline and cortisol. But there are multiple other reasons also which lead to the secretion of adrenaline-it might be because of a genuine threat to our life to a situation when we've got six new deadlines on our desk.
And sadly, our body has not yet learned to decipher the difference between the two; it's all the same thing to our bodies. And when our bodies start producing more stress hormones, which stimulate higher circulating levels of adrenaline, we demand (from inside) a 'fuel' to power us out of the danger that the body thinks to be in. And this results in hunger cues.
Solution- First, reduce caffeine intake. Practice deep breathing. Make a breath-focused practice constant, the first thing after you wake up-it can be meditation, tai chi, yoga, or anything related to breath awareness.
4. You're Not Sleeping Enough:- Sleep enormously affects your appetite. Science has now concluded that when people don't get enough sleep, the two main hormones controlling satiety and appetite (respectively, leptin and ghrelin) change. So, biochemically you're driven to want to eat more when you haven't had enough sleep.
Solution- Make sure to get eight hours of sleep per night. Having a constant bedtime and waking time also helps.
5. You're Not Drinking Sufficient Water: Dehydration often takes the shape of hunger. When dehydrated, your hypothalamus-the part of the brain responsible for hunger and thirst-sends you mixed signals, compelling you to think that you need to munch, although what you really need is nothing but a glass of water.
Solution- If you're still feeling hungry even after eating a big meal, try drinking a glass of water. You're likely to find that you don't really need that extra mashed potato after all.
Bottomline, your hunger, more than often, is a result of imbalanced hunger hormones. They happen owing to a variety of reasons, including inappropriate diet and certain lifestyle habits. If you constantly feel hungry, it may be beneficial to consult a nutritionist who can determine if there are changes required to help you feel more full.
If you've any question for us, feel free to drop a comment below. We'll be more than happy to resolve it.