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7 reasons you may be hungry (even if you feel you “shouldn’t” be)

“How can I be hungry already? I juuust ate?"

There's oftentimes confusion on whether or not to eat because you're unsure if it's really hunger or there something else going on. Then it typically throws you off and not wanting to "mess up" your diet. Here's an example:

You wake up, work out and eat breakfast around 7:30. An hour or so later, your stomach is growling ... Then the hesitancy kicks in because of the confusion around what to eat, the inconvenience of not being prepared and having to settle for what you have around you (*cough *cough sugary granola/protein bars). Then you think one of two things: "ah, yes, that was a healthy snack" or "well, there goes my workout/diet."

You see how this cycle can continue? This leads to this frustrating statement/thought I often hear from chronic dieters or those on a constant weight battle:

“I just don’t know how or what to eat anymore.”

This happens because of the restriction of certain foods and a disruption of body attunement (the ability to be in touch with what’s going on with your body) because of constant dieting.

However, there is always a reason why your body may be needing extra nourishment and it's important to really pay attention to what it's trying to say. So, in this post, I've listed seven things your body is possibly communicating to you.

Here are 7 reasons you may actually be hungry

(even if you feel you “shouldn’t” be)

1 | You’re not eating enough healthy, quality fat(s) or protein in your meals. These macronutrients (including fiber) are important when it comes to balancing your hormones and blood sugar. When your hormones aren't satisfied and/or your blood sugar isn't on a steady stream, it can cause insatiable cravings and hunger spells. 😩

2 | You’re having too many carbs (complex and/or simple) during a meal or meals. These equate to sugar which increases insulin levels. If your quality, complex carbohydrates aren't paired with quality fat, fiber and protein it'll cause an imbalance in your hormones. Which is not actual hunger but hormonal hunger (which is classified as a craving). 🍔 🍩🍦

3 | You had more activity the day before. Did you walk or exercise a little more? Did you have a longer day. You may have done a bit more than usual and didn't eat as much due to being off schedule. 👟

4 | You ate a lot less the day before. Going along with the previous reason - you may have not fueled enough for the energy you exuded.

5 | You didn’t fuel properly post workout/movement. Protein is important for muscle and tissue recovery, along with turning off your hunger hormones. 💪🏼

6 | You’re solely experiencing something physical that's temporary. For example, you’re in your luteal phase right before your menstrual cycle. This will make you hungrier than usual due to fluctuating hormones (increase in progesterone) and your body needing more energy to perform these adjustments.

7 | You’re just simply having a day where you’re hungrier. It's completely normal! Just understand this is how the body works and adjust to your needs. 🤷🏽‍♀️

The important thing to do is surrender and try your best to rid the feelings of perfection because you're only going to be disappointed. There's a reason your body is yearning for nourishment - it's communicating to you that something is off.

Just like the texture of your skin, look of your hair and how you're managing emotions - your body's way of utilizing calories is going to be dependent upon what's going on in your life and what nutrients your introducing.

So, please, honor your hunger and know that's it's okay to ebb and flow with what and why you're eating.

Part of my practice is focusing on intuitive eating and how to shift your, diet/all-or-nothing, mentality to relearning and trusting your body to communicate what it needs and responding accordingly. When doing so, you learn how to view food as something positive and nourishing; not something you're having to be conflicted about.

How can you change the awareness of your thoughts to help you become more intuitive?

With Love,

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© 2020 Candid Health, LLC

Cassie Brown

Clinical Nutritionist

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