Do you find yourself super hungry in between meals? That’s a problem that can sabotage your best diet efforts. If you’re hungry in between meals then you’re going to be more likely to snack and while an occasional healthy snack is okay, the wrong snacks can be a problem. These’re the 7 reasons you could be super hungry in between meals and what you can do to fix the problem.
1. You Aren’t Eating Enough
The first reason you could be hungry in between meals is that you may just not be eating enough to get from one meal to another. You shouldn’t be going any lower than 1,200 calories a day. You can break this up in various ways. Typically, it’s best to consume more calories at breakfast and dinner than at lunch. You could go for 400 at breakfast, 300 at lunch and 500 at dinner to come in around 1,200.
2. You Eat Junk in Place of Meals
We’ve all been guilty of this. Last week I decided to skip having a true lunch so I could enjoy some Oreos and milk. While yummy, it wasn’t a good meal and sure enough, I was starving by dinner. Simple carbs such as those often found in junk foods don’t stay with you long enough to stave off hunger. It’s okay to have a small treat 🍩 now and then but replacing a meal with junk food doesn’t work out well.
3. You Don’t Eat Enough Protein 🍗
Protein is very important. While carbs can give you energy, protein gives you strength. It also gives you that lovely feeling of being full so you don’t snack constantly in between meals. I’ve learned that I eat much less when I have a good source of protein at every meal. Meat, eggs, cheese and peanut butter are all good sources of protein.
4. You Eat on the Run 🚗
Sometimes you have to eat on the run because you’re crazy busy. It happens but it’s best to avoid this whenever you can. Eating on the run can make you feel like you didn’t really eat at all. You don’t get the enjoyment of sitting down to a real meal so you can feel as if you’ve not eaten. Taking time to sit down and enjoy your food can break the snack habit in between meals.
5. You Eat Mindlessly
You know how you’re eating something and you look down and discover it’s suddenly gone? And you really don’t remember eating it? It’s a disappointing feeling when you realize you didn’t pay attention to your food. When this happens, you’re eating mindlessly. You’re consuming food but you’re not paying attention to it, leading you to feel hungry again quickly. Put away the phone or turn off the tv and truly enjoy your food.
6. You’re in a Snack Habit
It’s easy enough to fall into the habit of snacking. You may not be hungry at all; you’re just craving something to eat. Food tastes good and we turn to it for all kinds of reasons besides hunger. It could be comforting to you or you could just be eating because you’re bored. Before you reach for a snack, ask yourself if you’re truly hungry.
7. You’re Thirsty
It’s actually possible that the hunger signals you’re getting are actually signals of thirst. It sounds a little unbelievable but there’s truth to this. Many times people mistake thirst for hunger. To test this out, try having a glass of water next time you’re hungry. If the hunger fades then you know you were thirsty instead of hungry. If the hunger doesn’t subside then you probably should have a healthy snack. 🍎
These’re some reasons you may feel super hungry in between meals. What do you do to keep snacking to a minimum? I’d love to hear from you!