The recipe for weight loss is a simple one; reduce food intake and increase activity. So why do so many of us struggle to lose weight? For starters, the moment we decide to reduce calories, our appetites kick in with defiant growls and grumbles that demand more sustenance. This seemingly cruel attempt of your stomach to sabotage your weight loss aspirations is actually a biological response.
Calorie restriction causes the stomach to produce a hunger inducing hormone called ghrelin. The good news is that there are effective and natural ways to suppress hunger and defeat your stomach’s attempts to sabotage your weight loss goals.
- Use Vinegar and Cinnamon to Control Blood Sugar: Add flavor to your food without adding calories. Rather than adding sugar and high calorie sauces to your otherwise healthy food, use vinegar to add flavorful seasoning to salads and vegetables. Not only does it add a nice flavor, but vinegar lowers the glycemic index causing you to metabolize your food more slowly.
Cinnamon can be a sweet, non caloric substitute for sugar. Sprinkling a little on top of your favorite recipe will not only add a sweet flavor, but also slow the transition of food from your stomach to your intestines, which keeps you feeling full longer.
- Fill Up on Water: Drinking water before a meal can affect how hungry you are and therefore how much food you consume. Studies have shown that drinking just two glasses of water prior to a meal, will result in a 22% reduction in calories consumed during that meal. This simple strategy can save you hundreds of calories a day!
- Don’t Let Yourself Get Too Hungry Before Eating: Waiting until you’re starving to eat, causes you to be more likely to eat quickly and consume more calories. Inhaling your food doesn’t give your brain the chance to process feelings of fullness and so you eat far more than necessary to satiate your appetite. Being in starvation mode also leads to grabbling the most quickly accessible foods, which aren’t typically the healthiest food choices.
- Get at Least Seven Hours of Sleep Per Night: Studies show that getting less than seven hours of sleep per night can increase hunger by as much as 24%. At the same time, hormones that signal fullness may be decreased by as much as 26% in the sleep deprived. Striving to get a minimum of seven hours of sleep per night will not only decrease your appetite, but also give you the clarity of mind to make healthy eating choices.
- Eat Mindfully: Many times we eat in front of the TV or computer, not really paying attention to what we’re putting in our mouths. This deprives our brain of fully experiencing the flavors and the sensations of enjoying each and every bite. It’s no wonder why we don’t feel satisfied after eating this way. When eating, the focus should be on eating! Mindful eating reduces unnecessary calorie consumption and increases feelings of satiety and satisfaction.
If controlling your appetite has been a stumbling block for you in trying to lose weight, the compassionate experts at Medifast Weight Control Centers can help! In addition to the few tips listed above, we can share many strategies as we support you on the way to achieving your ideal weight.
Please call Medifast Weight Control Centers at (602) 996-9669 today for your complimentary consultation and let us help you achieve the weight you desire!