We just finished up our first week of the Body Balance Challenge. This is an 8 week nutrition challenge with a lot of social support and coaching. The number one question to the first week was ” How do I beat being hungry?”
Not to get technical on you. For clarity what we’re really looking at modifying is appetite(the desire to eat food, felt as hunger).
So what we want are appetite suppressants. To take the edge off cravings and curb hunger.
I’ve realized with new clients I can’t predict how minor or major their craving will be. You really can’t predict will changing your diet be a smooth transition, or is someone going to get killed in the process.
Some clients are able to radically make changes with little or no side effects.
I had one client go from drinking 8 Cokes(not diet either) and eating fast food every day. To no Cokes or fast food-overnight! She told me she had a little bit of a headache the first day but that was it. I decided she was pretty much bullet proof right there.
On the other hand. A client related to me that after 4 days of eliminating sugar she googled “can you die from sugar withdrawal”! That’s a good question!(answer is “no” by the way) but you might feel like keeling over.
So with no way of knowing how you’ll feel chaning your habits from unhealthy to healthy. You need some tactics and strategy to make it.
Lets get down to some tactics to help you manage your appetite when you’re getting lean.
If you try one of these and it doesn’t work no sweat. Not all of these tactics will work for everyone. So test one and keep going till you have an arsenal of hunger busting foods and tactics to draw from.
1. Get Hydrated-Stay hydrated. You need to first be hydrated properly for maximizing fat loss. So this is where you begin. 8 glasses of 8 ounces a day is a start. That’s just a Big Gulp cup per day for reference. I really think if you’re exercising and in Texas in the Spring and Summer you need to double that.
2. Start your day with Oatmeal. A good long burning carbohydrate. And it’s a food that’s pretty hard to screw up. Go for a 1/2 cup in the AM. Takes less than 2 minutes in the microwave. Add honey or fruit for flavor.
3. Get moving. A lot of mindless eating comes from boredom and habit. If you feel yourself going for the chips in the evening you may just need to head out the door for a walk around the block. I know this isn’t ideal but it beats giving in.
4. Salads and vegetables in between meals. I’ve gotten good feedback from people using carrots, celery, lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes, cauliflower in the mid-morning and mid afternoon to stay full with minimum calories and maximum nutrition.
5. Peanut Butter. Must be the fat content. It seems to take the edge off for a lot of people. Eat it right off the spoon and forget the bread. Use sparingly.
6. Bananas work for between meal hunger busters. 100-140 calories per serving and nothing but nutritious. If you’re really hurting bananas and peanut butter together should nuke any hunger pains.
7. Almonds are a dieting staple. I picked this up from watching fitness competitors diet down for shows. They travel pretty much any place you go and can hit the spot for you. They can be caloric so watch your serving size.
8. Whey protein- fast, filling, easy to take anywhere. Protein is the most filling of the macro nutrients. More so than fats or carbohydrates. Stick with powders that you mix yourself if you can. Keep it simple is always best.
9. Chocomine- Not well known but very effective. Chocomine is the feel good componet of chocolate. Imagine the benefits of chocolate without the sugar, extra calories or dairy. This supplement has a number of appetite suppressant, mild stimulant, and fat burning qualities. This won’t work for everyone but I’ve been getting good feedback on it.
10. Green Tea-the appetite suppressant quality comes mostly from the 30mg or so of caffeine. Research has shown a slight increase in metabolic rate with green tea. You can use it strategically to avoid those times of the day hunger hits you hardest.
Yes there may be times when it does come down to sheer willpower. I hope these tips will give you an edge and some hope through those first few challenging days.