Saturday, January 21, 2012

True Hunger and the "I'm Full" Signal

Sometimes it's easy to mislead ourselves into thinking we're "starving to death" when the truth is, we're really just bored.  But there are times I truly feel like a hungry, hungry hippo! 

It was revealed to me several years ago in the Weigh Down program that we were created with two empty, needing-to-be-fed holes in our body; the stomach and the heart.  The stomach is a literal hole in our body to be fed with the proper amount of food. As for the heart, they refer to our deep-down feelings. To satisfy our deep-down feelings, needs, or desires of the heart, we often turn to food and overload our stomach with more than it needs.  This is the story of the last twelve years of my life.        

Trying to feed a hurting, needy heart with food or anything on the earth is a common mistake.  When you attempt to feed a longing heart with food, you'll stay on the path to being overweight.  There's nothing inherently evil about food, alcohol, tobacco, money, credit cards, etc.  However, it's wrong to become a slave to any of these things or to let them master you.

We try to feed our hurting hearts with physical food. We've also learned to love food. But to find freedom from this bondage, we have to relearn how to feed the stomach only when it is truly hungry, how to feed or nourish the longing human soul without food, and to recognize the different “hunger” urges and not confuse them.

When we stop going to food for comfort and start swallowing regular foods only when our stomach growls, we'll swallow or eat just 1/2 to 1/3 of what we used to swallow. The desire eating goes away!  That means you'll lose weight! 

You can do this.  It's working for me!  The amount of food I'm consuming has decreased as I've began to focus on hunger and fullness!  Once you lose your passion for food and focus on the passion of your dreams, you'll eat less food and therefore lose weight permanently!

I found a fun article on listing four easy tricks to send the I'm full signal to your brain!  I wanted to share these because they really worked for me!

Portion control is a key player when it comes to balanced nutrition, but it can be hard to listen to your body's hunger signals when your mind is telling you to reach for seconds. When you realize that you're full, take advantage of these tricks to tell your mind that the meal is over:
  • Pick peppermint. A piece of hard candy, a mint, a mug of tea, or even mouthwash -- go for anything peppermint-flavored after eating to flood your senses and keep your instincts in check. As a natural appetite suppressant, peppermint will help you control your cravings and avoid postmeal munchies.
  • Get up and move. It's hard to keep eating if you're no longer near the food, so ending the meal can be as easy as leaving your chair. The best way to let your body know that it's time to stop eating? Switch locations. Move from the kitchen to the living room and busy yourself with other tasks.
  • Have a small taste of something sweet. Sometimes, just a spoonful of something sweet can curb the urge to keep eating and mark the end of a meal. Instead of reaching for a cookie, though, you should choose a healthy, water-based food that will help you feel full. Try a handful of berries, a serving of watermelon, or a spoonful of pomegranate seeds -- the tart seeds pack major antioxidant punch, plus they're high in vitamin A, vitamin C, and fiber.
  • Make postmeal plans. If you have something to do after a meal, you'll find it easy to steer clear of unnecessary seconds and quit eating once you're satisfied. It doesn't need to be a major to-do, either -- simply planning to call a friend or pack tomorrow's gym bag will help you stay focused and stop snacking.

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