Controlling Appetite

Controlling Appetite

Controlling Appetite
Controlling your appetite and controlling what you eat is not exactly the same thing. You may find that you're eating even when you are not hungry.

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    A , Internal Medicine, answered
    Recent research shows what many of us knew all along: Our moods dictate what we eat. Researchers studied the diets of hundreds of people to show how personality and foods collide—how our moods may steer us to certain foods, based on their physical characteristics. The study theorized that many moods send specifics signals (for example, stressed adrenal glands could be sending salt-craving signals). So what does your favorite turn-to food say about you?
    • If you crave tough foods, like meat, or hard and crunchy foods, you could be feeling angry.
    • If you crave sugars, you could be feeling depressed.
    • If you crave soft and sweet foods, like ice cream, you could be feeling anxious.
    • If you crave salty foods, you could be stressed.
    • If you crave bulky, fill-you-up foods, like crackers and pasta, you could be feeling lonely and sexually frustrated.
    • If you crave anything and everything, you could be feeling jealous.
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    A Nutrition & Dietetics, answered on behalf of

    Whenever you are eating with family or friends make a plan before you arrive. Having a plan in place is the number one key to success. Decide ahead of time how you will handle bread, alcohol, and desserts. If you set limits you will have structure. Structure leads to control. It also leads to freedom as strange as that may sound. When you make a plan you are choosing what you want to do. That is the freedom of choice. When you are full stop eating. Never lose sight of your goal.

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    A , Family Medicine, answered
    Our hunger drive craves volume. A key skill that you need to develop for losing weight is the ability to eat large volumes of raw and cooked high-nutrient, low-calorie foods every single day. This means eating lots of vegetables. Imagine three stomachs. Each is filled with the same amount of calories, but one in the form of oil, one in the form of chicken, and one in the form of vegetables. The stomachs with the oil and chicken have a great deal of room in them, room that can enable you to easily overeat on calories. That's why filling your stomach with high-nutrient foods is so important to achieving and maintaining a healthy weight. This leads us to a counterintuitive, but crucial rule: to lose more weight, and for better health, eat more high-volume, low-calorie foods. To lose more, eat more.

    When you are actively trying to lose weight, you should strive to satisfy your volume requirements first, before addressing the other components of hunger. This may feel strange at first because you may not immediately feel satisfied by the higher volume of food. This is because you are accustomed to eating large quantities of high-calorie foods that cause a dopamine rush, a rush that low-calorie foods don't deliver. However, your body will adjust, be less dependent on the dopamine surge in the brain, and will gradually become more and more satisfied with fewer calories. Give yourself time. Striving to fulfill your body's volume and nutrient requirements can help you resolve food cravings and your toxic hunger.
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    Control eating until bedtime by distracting yourself from thinking about food and by getting involved in an activity that so absorbs you, food doesn't even make it to your radar screen. Some people report that leaving the house is helpful. You could take a walk, do an errand, or visit a friend (and let your friend know what you're doing so that you're not offered snacks). If you are at home, clean a closet, do woodworking, play the piano, or read a book that you know will completely absorb you. Make a list of a few projects, so if you finish one you have another to start.
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    A Nutrition & Dietetics, answered on behalf of

    Sometimes cravings pass and sometimes they don’t. Many studies have shown that when someone doesn’t “indulge” in a food that they are craving the craving continues, and tends to grow. This often leads to overeating, even binging. When you eat a reasonable portion of the food you’re craving you can, in essence, reduce the craving. But not denying yourself the foods you crave, you will psychologically cultivate a healthy relationship with food.

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    A , Nutrition & Dietetics, answered
    Anything you can do to distract yourself from smells, images, activities, or emotions you associate with your craved foods will help you withstand them. To sever that conditioned response, try the Five D’s technique. Use it anytime a craving hits.
    1. Delay your urge to cave in to the craving. Drink a tall glass of water. That minute or two can help you reach the next D.
    2. Determine what’s going on. Ask yourself, “Why do I want this chocolate chip cookie or this slice of pizza? Am I physically hungry? What else might I really want or need?”
    3. Distract yourself for 10 minutes. Wait it out. Some experts call this urge-surfing -- riding the tumultuous waves of a craving until they subside. If you don’t think you can wait the full 10 minutes, take a walk.
    4. Distance yourself, physically, from the temptation. Walk out of the house, if you have to. Put some space between you and the food.
    5. Decide how you will handle the craving: Will you give in or walk away? Sometimes, it’s okay to give in. If you can consciously decide that yes, you really do want it, allow yourself one serving -- and enjoy it thoroughly.
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    Read: Educate yourself on the subject. It is actually fascinating. I recommend In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan and The End of Overeating by David Kessler, the former head of the FDA. If you understand what makes you overeat (and what food companies know about us that we do not even know) you can start to make your own rules for yourself.

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    A Nutrition & Dietetics, answered on behalf of

    Here is a list of a couple of tips to controlling your appetite when you eat out:

    • Order a salad with the dressing on the side to help fill you up with lower calorie foods before the main course.
    • Share your meal to cut back on the portion on your plate.
    • Ask your waiter to divide your meal in half and place half of it in a doggy bag before bringing your meal to the table.
    • Sip on a 0 calorie beverage throughout the meal (water with fresh squeezed lemon or lime or a diet soda.
    • Order an extra side of vegetables without fat to help fill you up without adding a lot of calories.
    • Focus on the people you are with and the conversation instead of the food to help keep your mind off of eating.
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    A , Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease), answered
    The following are 10 tips that my patients have found to be very helpful in controlling their overeating:

    • Do not skip meals. Eat breakfast, lunch and dinner. Include snacks if going more than four to five hours without a meal.
    • All meals and snacks should include adequate protein.
    • Choose whole grains (i.e., oats, barley, quinoa, 100% whole wheat, buckwheat) instead of white flour.
    • Make sure to include fruit and/or veggies with all meals.
    • Plan ahead for the week. Go food shopping regularly and stock your home with healthy food options.
    • Start a food journal. Record meal times and all food/beverages consumed.
    • Get moving. Join a gym, try a Zumba class, roll out a yoga mat or simply walk more.
    • Go to bed earlier and get those zzz’s.
    • Stop categorizing foods into “good” or “bad.” Just focus on making better choices.
    • Don’t think of food as a reward or treat. Reward yourself with a massage, manicure, a movie with a friend, a new pair of shoes or simply a pat on the back.

    For some of you, every tip in the book might not help you stop overeating a certain food. My advice: Don’t buy that food to begin with -- you can’t overeat something that is not in front of you.
    This content originally appeared on doctoroz.com
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    A , Nutrition & Dietetics, answered
    You can eat a lot of food when you're not paying attention. The Child (pleasure-seeking impulses) tricks you into believing that if you're not paying attention, what you're eating doesn't count. So you believe that calories that come from nibbling don't count. But they do.

    For a long time, I had a habit of eating while talking on the phone or cooking. I spend a lot of time on the phone, and because I do most of the cooking in our family, I'm always in the kitchen, I'm always on the phone, and I'm always cooking.

    I was so accustomed to nibbling while I did these things that it took a lot of practice to create a new, non-nibbling habit. To change this pattern, I needed to see the truth -- that on some level I was pretending that I wasn't eating. Because nibbling isn't a meal, I wasn't noticing it as much. I also wasn't losing weight. I'd reduced my calories, but because I didn't include nibbles in my calorie count -- probably because I couldn't keep track of them all -- my excess pounds stayed stubbornly in place.

    The other thing about nibbling was that it robbed me of eating pleasure. Because my attention was divided, I couldn't completely enjoy the food or focus on my phone conversation or my cooking. And that was ultimately unsatisfying.