How Do I Know If I Am Really Hungry?

Kirkland Personal Trainer Explains the Difference Between Physical and Emotional Hunger.

Before you reach for that cookie or extra slice of pizza stop and ask yourself: “Am I really hungry?”

So many of us eat for reasons other than hunger. Eating is often a social occasion, we are talking with friends and before we know it that bowl of chips and dip is empty. A hard day at work or an argument with a spouse can subconsciously drive us to consume that pint of ice cream. Maybe we are bored, or have just gotten into the habit of snacking while we watch TV…More often than not, when we think we are hungry we are simply thirsty and dehydrated.

There are so many examples of times when we are eating without thinking and without really listening to our bodies. By recognizing true hunger versus other factors (such emotions or thirst) you will be much more likely to lose fat and keep it off. Use the chart below to help figure out what kind of hunger you are experiencing.

Word Hunger Chart III

If it is physical hunger you can have a snack (e.g. a handful of almonds or piece of fruit) to tide you over or you could even begin preparing your next meal earlier.

If it’s emotional hunger (boredom, frustration, stress or fatigue) you could use some strategies to distract yourself like going for a walk, calling a friend, taking a bath. Even if the stress is certain to exist, you can still prevent the emotional overeating by not waiting too long between meals (2-3 hours max) and staying hydrated by drinking enough water throughout the day.

At my Kirkland personal training studio, one of the biggest nutrition battles I’ve noticed with my clients is getting them to recognize their cravings and implement a game plan on how to decrease and avoid them. Sometimes we eat to satisfy our emotions and understanding the difference can help you lose weight.

If feel you need more support and accountability I would recommend looking into nutrition coaching or asking a friend or family member to be your health advocate and encourage you throughout your process.

Where do you fall on the above chart right now? Were you surprised? Let me know by commenting below!



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