Maybe you’ve been training harder or feeling a little stressed and your hunger levels are feeling higher than usual. It’s time to take advantage of some solid strategies to curb those cravings early on and make sure you’re feeling full after every meal. This will help you avoid the temptation to sneak a salty or sweet snack.
If you find that you’re frequently thinking about food, you simply might need something else to think about. Sometimes boredom can lead us to focusing on food, wishing for a snack. Most people are not starving and sometimes just need a little more engagement. Replicate those days where you’re so busy you forget to eat!
Here are some ways to stay busy. First, eat your meal so you’re fed to fullness. Then start running errands, spring cleaning, writing a book, planning that dream business. Start tasks that seriously engage you. You’ll feel accomplished and when your stomach rumbles again you’ll barely even notice! Next time you look at the clock it will have been hours since you last thought about food, you were so deeply focused on your true interests.
We say this one a LOT to our members...so if you haven’t tried it yet now is the time! Eating slowly gives your hunger senses time to kick in and you’ll be feeling less snack-prone in no time. Put your fork down between every bite and enjoy. If you usually finish everything on your plate (makes sense if you count macros!) notice how much easier it would it is not to eat the last bite now that you’re more full. Utilize this method next time you eat out with friends.
Dehydration tricks us into thinking we’re hungry, so keep up with your fluids. If water isn’t quenching your hunger try chicken broth, kombucha, sparkling water. These are low/zero calorie ways to keep cravings at bay for at least a couple hours of the day.
If your meals aren’t satisfying you, then you’re probably not eating enough volume. Eat MORE food – NOT more calories! This means filling your plate up with leafy greens, low carb vegetables and fruits (e.g leaves, broccoli, berries) and always having a glass of water with your meal. This is an excellent way to eat to fullness while consuming the same amount of calories as you’d find in a candy bar...but with triple the nutrients.
Take more time to think about the macronutrient profile of your meal. Is your meal all carbs? All protein? Mostly fat? Try getting a nice spread of each macro into each of your meals. This diagram shows you how to build your plate for a moderate training day. Adjust slightly for lighter or harder training days. A meal with this kind of balance will help to make sure you’re feeling full, fueled and satisfied.
Everyone is different, so it’s important to find what works for YOU when it comes to meal timing. If you find yourself hungrier during certain times of the day then go with that. Make changes to your current eating habits:
Find what works for you.
Need some more advice to stop snacking and curb cravings? Read next, Snacking: The Silent Saboteur.