One of the worst consequences of dieting under your normal calorie intake, is the dreaded hunger pangs. Those suckers can make the most discipline person, run towards that slice of cake, or that extra serving of chicken, or whatever it may be.
Dieting is a challenging thing and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. It’s a mind control game, where you are struggling to succeed and win. Not only that but if you succumb to the temptations that surround you during your dieting, you feel absolutely disappointed in your lack of will power.
If you keep reading, I am going to try to give you some encouragement and some advice, on how to succumb those hunger pangs and keep on your diet!
Hunger pangs is that uncomfortable and sometimes torturous feeling we get, when we haven’t eaten. It’s something that can make the calmest person very aggressive and highly agitated. During a calorie deficit, when trying to lose body fat, hunger pangs is something you are going to experience. It’s just absolutely natural for your body to try in whatever way, to remind you that you haven’t eaten and it needs food. The thing is, this is just your body inability to understand that you “Got This” and that you aren’t starving (once you’re following a proper and healthy caloric deficit diet), and that in the end it would actually be for its’ benefit.
This pain comes from the contractions of the stomach. The body is this vessel that easily adapts to conditions placed on it. Before, when you were eating constantly, it was accustom to that schedule of being fed at a certain amount of calories. Now, it has less to digest and obviously it’s not going to know you’re on a diet when you start eating on a calorie deficit, so it’s going to digest that food and well, expect more. Unfortunately for you, this causes the hunger pangs.
Some ways to suppress these hunger pangs, is to drink a lot of water. I know, I know, it sounds a little typical but it’s a very good advice. You’re filling that void that you have from not eating.
Another suggestion is, drink some coffee or a drink with very low calories in it. Anything below 50 calories, isn’t going to cause any problems, so consuming it between meals could help. It utilizes the same concept as the water. Of course do not go overboard with this, or you will have to include it into your calorie intake for the day. It’s meant to suppress the hunger, not cause satiation (satisfaction from eating. the feeling of no longer needing to eat).
Next, chew on some gum. Some people have found that chewing gum helps them feel full, even when they haven’t eaten. Whether this is a psychological tactic, it’s a good suggestion nevertheless and it doesn’t hurt to try.
Finally, one thing that used to help me, is sucking on mints. I think it just helped with the oral fixation, of getting my mouth into the groove of things, even though it wasn’t going to be getting anything until a few hours.
I know this topic is about hunger pangs, but I think I should also mention light headed feelings or discomfort you may experience. It is definitely all due to the fact you are no longer consuming the amount the body is accustom to using for energy. Remember as much as food is fun to eat, it’s what we get our major nutrients from. We need those carbohydrates for energy, along with protein and fat. Without those in the abundance you are accustom to, the body now has to use what it already has stored to keep you going. The good thing about that is, the stored fat you have had from either bulking or just not living a healthy lifestyle prior to the calorie deficit diet, is going to be used up. This use of body fat, is going to make you shed weight in the mirror and if leaning up is one of your goals to accomplish, once you’re including the diet along with steady weight training, the body fat will be reduced and you will start looking a little more shredded (cut and defined) as the time goes by.
Good news though. The hunger pang and other side effects to dieting on a deficit, do go away. It took me about 8 days, give or take a few days, to finally reach a point where I no longer am hungry or starving, during the times I would have normally been eating.
Like I said before, your body adapts and this is just one more thing it will get used to. I know you might be thinking, if you become accustom to the amount of calories you are consuming, wouldn’t you stop losing weight? The answer is no. Once you are on a calorie deficit (eating less than you are putting out), you will lose weight. So don’t sweat over the fact that no longer will you have to challenge yourself 24/7, to not eat extra food for that day. I know a lot of people like the challenge, but you can always create new ones 🙂
So when those hunger pangs come, and you feel discouraged, realized that in time it WILL go away. Not only that but your end results, will be more than worth it!
Next time, I am going to talk about cheat meals. So that it will help just in case, you do falter that you can actually incorporate this meal into your diet. I’ll explain how it works and why it keeps you on track, rather than off! 🙂Read More »