Cravings vs. Hunger
"Hunger is the best sauce." - Michael Easter
When was the last time you were actually hungry? So many times when we feel like eating we might actually be feeling cravings rather than actual hunger.
Actual hunger comes on gradually, is felt physically in your stomach, and is easy to satisfy with ANY FOOD. Cravings come on suddenly, are specific to a particular food, are habit driven, and hard to satisfy.
One of the biggest myth's in our modern food accessible world is that it's NOT OK to be hungry. We are encouraged to eat at the first sign of discomfort be that physical or emotional discomfort.
Often times we eat because we've developed a habit to eat at a particular time or after an event. There's a strong psychological component to why we eat what and when we do.
Here's the ultimate test of hunger vs. cravings. Are you hungry enough to eat baked fish and steamed broccoli. No? Then you are not hungry but are craving.
I learned that it's ok to be hungry from my nutrition coach. She coached me through a 20 lbs weight loss after I finished my competitive weightlifting season in 2019. Many times our weekly coaching calls focused on how I managed my hunger. I can tell you from experience it's not managed by eating the things I WANTED. The things I wanted to eat did not satisfy my rumbling belly. Things that satisfied my rumbling belly were a very large glass of water followed by lean protein and vegetables. Yes, many times I ate baked fish and steamed broccoli.
So the next time you find yourself reaching into the fridge, pause and see if you're willing to eat baked fish and steamed broccoli. If you're not, drink a tall glass of water, step away from the fridge, and plan your next lean protein and veggie rich meal. Good luck!
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