Why am I ALWAYS hungry?

If you often feel hungry, you are not alone!

 

There are many reasons you might feel hungry. Of course, the most obvious one is that you are! Physically hungry that is. Is your stomach is empty, Has your blood sugar dropped, and arehunger hormones are having a party.That’s physical hunger! But often, the hunger may not be physical hunger.

 

It might be a craving or an emotional type of hunger. These are common reasons why some people may eat too much. It could be brought on by a certain type of diet profile, too much stress or chron stress, or maybe just other things going on in life.

 

It’s EASY to mistake “psychological” hunger for “physical” hunger. Let’s talk about the difference between both of these types of hunger, and give learn some tips how to help you figure out which one your are experiencing.

 

Physical hunger vs. psychological hunger

 

#1 -Your “physical” hunger is regulated by your body through your hunger hormones. That’s leptin and ghrelin…two very important hormones.  And of course, it should be. You don’t want to be completely drained of fuel and nutrients for a long time. So, you’re smart body is programmed to seek food when you physically need it. Often times those physical needs are that your stomach is empty and/or your blood sugar has dropped.

#2 – “Psychological” hunger is eating to overcome boredom, sadness, stress, etc. It’s based on a thought or feeling, why it’s often referred to emotional hunger.  It’s what happens when you see a great food commercial or walk into a great smelling  grocery store (there’s a reason a lot of stores have their bakery near the door).  This kind of hunger is not from your empty stomach or low blood sugar.

So, how do you know the difference!

 

Eight steps to figure out if you’re physically hungry or not

 

1 – The first thing you need to do is stop and evaluate. Mindlessly stuffing down that protein bar at the first sign of hunger isn’t necessarily going to help you.

2 – Once you stopped to evaluate..pay attention to where this hunger is coming from. Can you actually feel or hear your stomach growling? Did you miss or skip a meal, and haven’t eaten in hours? Or are you seeing and smelling something divinely delicious? Are you bored, sad, or stressed? Stop and consider all these things and really pay attention.

3 – THEN have a big glass of water. You may actually just be thirsty. Now pay attention to your hunger feeling for at least another minute. Seriously dig into the source of the hunger feeling. It can be easy to jump to a conclusion, but that may or may not be the right one. So listen to your body and mind very deeply.

.4 – If you do find that your feelings may be the source, then acknowledge and feel them. They may just be needing your comfort and recognition, even if they feel like they need food. Try deep breathing, stand up and stretch, or going for a quick walk to release some of these emotions. This also gives your mind a chance to focus on something other than the feeling of hunger.

5 – If you’re pretty sure that your body physically needs nutrition, just wait a few more minutes to make sure.

6 -AND then you can be fairly certain that your hunger was from emotions, boredom, thirst, or actual physical hunger.

7 – If it’s physical hunger, feel free to eat, choosing healthy and nutritious foods. To satisfy the hunger the food you eat should be a mix of a protein, fiber, and water, and a healthy carb if wanted.  Eat slowly and mindfully. Allow your body to be able to tell you when you have had enough. Chew well and savor every last bite of it.

8 – Rinse and repeat at the your next feeling of hunger. Realize that eating at set times, when not hungry does not satisfy your hormones.

 

In Conclusion

 

The feeling of hunger can manifest for many reasons. Of course, if you’re  truly physically hungry –   you need the food and nutrients. But often, there can be underlying psychological or emotional reason you might feel hungry.

Now you know my eight steps to figure out if your physical body is hungry, or if you’re bored, sad, or stressed. Use this process over and over again to feed your body what it actually physically needs (and not overdo it).

 

 

References:
https://authoritynutrition.com/ghrelin/
http://www.precisionnutrition.com/dealing-with-mysterious-hunger
https://authoritynutrition.com/18-ways-reduce-hunger-appetite/
https://authoritynutrition.com/15-incredibly-filling-foods/

 

For more tips and support, join us in our closed Facebook Group. 

Imagine Fit-HealthyJourney

S.A.D. it’s that time of year for it…

Seasonal Affective Disorder: What it is and What to do About it?

It’s that time of year again—a time of cool breezes, colored leaves and holiday preparation.  Fall and winter are exciting times…  Unless you suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).    If you struggle with winter depression, this time of year is not filled with joy and anticipation.  Instead, you probably feel like hiding under the covers until spring arrives in several months…

What is Seasonal Affective Disorder?

Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is a type of depression that’s related to changes in seasons — SAD begins and ends at about the same times every year. If you’re like most people with SAD, your symptoms start in the fall and continue into the winter months, sapping your energy and making you feel moody. Less often, SAD causes depression in the spring or early summer. (Find more info here.)

Everyone has the blues now and then, right?  But SAD is a depressive state that occurs seasonally, year after year, usually in the fall and winter.  If you suffer from SAD, you may feel perfectly normal during the spring and summer months, but starting around October or November, symptoms begin showing up. Or even now as our winter is dragging on.  We had more sun in October and November here in KY.

Because this type of depression come and goes with the seasons, you may wonder if it is all in your head.  It isn’t.  This is a real condition and can have a devastating impact on your life.

Researchers still don’t know the exact cause of SAD, but there are some factors that seem to be involved, and they involve the decreased amount of sunlight that fall and winter bring.

  • Melatonin: Melatonin is a hormone that impacts mood and sleep.  As the seasons change, your melatonin levels can fluctuate and may cause feelings of depressions.
  • Serotonin: When the amount of sunlight drops, so can your serotonin levels.  Since this chemical helps you have feelings of well-being and happiness, not having enough of it can cause your mood to drop.
  • Internal clock: Some scientists think that decreased sunlight disrupts your normal rhythms of wakefulness and sleepiness.  The result is sad and depressed feelings.

What are the Symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)?

SAD will often manifest itself as feelings of sadness or depression.  You may feel as though you cannot get enough sleep—struggling to get out of the bed in the morning, feeling drowsy during the day and going to bed earlier than you usually do.

Your energy and concentration may also run low, and this can affect your productivity at work and at home.  Of course, not having the energy to ‘get things done,’ only leads to frustration and more feelings of depression.  You may also notice weight gain.  Typically, SAD sufferers will crave foods high in carbohydrates and can gain between 9 and 30 pounds each year.

Finally, your social life may suffer.  If you are depressed, you just won’t enjoy being around others as much as you used to.  This can turn into social withdrawal which makes your feelings of depression and sadness even worse.

Now for the Good News – Ways to Combat Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)

If you think that you may be one of the millions of people who are affected by Seasonal Affective Disorder, you will be happy to know that you have many treatment options available.  Try experimenting with different treatments until you find one or a combination that works for you:(Read more here)

Light therapy: Up to 85% of winter depression sufferers are helped by simply sitting under a therapy light.  The bright light stabilizes the out-of-balance chemicals in your body, helping you to feel less depressed and more like yourself.  The best lights are those between 2,500 and 10,000 lux.
Vitamin D3: Vitamin D is frequently referred to as “The Sunshine Vitamin” because your body produces it when exposed to sunlight.  In fact, just 20-30 minutes of sunlight will produce 10,000 – 50,000 IUs of Vitamin D.  Why is this important?  Vitamin D is actually a hormone that has important roles in supporting a healthy heart, cellular replication, immune system, mood & mental health, muscles, blood sugar levels, and more!

Exercise: Exercise is a powerful player in the fight against SAD.  When you exercise, your body releases “feel good” chemicals called endorphins.  These chemicals cause you to feel happy, confident and bring about a feeling of well-being.  The elated feelings that endorphins bring are comparable to the feelings that morphine and heroin create.  To release endorphins, you will need to sustain your workout for about 30 minutes.
Dawn Simulators: Unlike the spring months, in which the light of dawn and dusk changes gradually, the winter months bring a much more abrupt change of light.  This may be one of the aggravators of SAD.  Try a dawn simulator.  These appliances can be programmed, much like an alarm clock, to gradually brighten your room each morning before you wake up.  Some SAD sufferers have had great success with dawn simulators.

You are not alone if you are beginning to feel depressed with the shortened days that we are experiencing.  Experiment with some of the treatment options and especially start exercising.  Before you know it, the days will begin lengthening out again!

 

Join us in the Healthy Journey group on FB.  Find us here.

Do you have Negative Nelly living in your head? Negative Self-talk and Limiting Beliefs can be changed.

A little self-criticism is a normal shared human mental pattern and can even be healthy for the most part. But we can also just as easily open the door to that overly vocal “negative nelly” voice in our head. Do you have a “Negative Nelly” living in your head?

However, if your negative voice is preventing you from doing what you want or need to do in your life, then it has to get booted out of your head. This kind of mental chatter has no right to set up a home in your mind.

Deeply held negative beliefs, especially when they’re firmly rooted in your unconscious, stress you out, damage relationships and can greatly limit your potential for health and happiness. What you tell yourself, becomes you!  My mother used to call it a self-fulfilling prophesy. The term “self-fulfilling prophecy” (SFP) was coined in 1948 by Robert Merton to describe “a false definition of the situation evoking a new behavior which makes the originally false conception come true” (Merton 1968: 477). *find info here

If you’re sick of having the same old conversation with your Negative Nelly, then be sure to try some of the ideas I’ve outlined in this article on how you can shift away from this hurtful mindset, and finally release yourself of these limiting beliefs.

What are limiting beliefs?

Limiting beliefs are the little, but persistent voices that convince you that you can’t be or do or have something due to a perceived inadequacy in some area of your life or personality.

Your negative Nelly Narrative may go something like this:

  • I won’t ever be [this]…
  • I can’t do [that]…
  • I don’t have [this]…
  • I don’t deserve to be/have [this]…
  • And, one really common one that comes up for many people…
  •  I am not good enough.

Let’s change up the narrative you may have been having with yourself for a very long time! You wouldn’t or shouldn’t say any of those things to your friends or family, right? Why is it OK to say them to yourself?

Overcoming negative self-talk and releasing limiting beliefs

Your limiting decisions have shaped everything you do, and they have likely prevented you from seeing opportunities and maybe even discouraged you from trying some things at all.

The good news is that it’s totally possible to permanently change a long-held belief — even the ones that are lifelong.

You only perceive what you believe, so your beliefs shape the very world you live in.

 But, when your limiting beliefs come into question, your whole world can experience a shift for the better.

Here are a few ideas to help you silence your inner critic for good!

When you find yourself feeling “stuck”, or repeatedly spinning your wheels on the same speed bumps that life might be throwing your way, it’s always a great idea to seek out help and guidance. If they are debilitating, find a good life coach/counselor or therapist.

In addition to that, there are several things you can do on your own, in your own time and space…

                >The first step to releasing limiting beliefs is to shift your thinking into AWARENESS

Time to bring those disempowering thoughts out of hiding! Once you do that, know that you have choice. However, just simply being aware or having knowledge of them is not enough, it’s just the first step. You must understand and truly believe that you have a choice about how to react to stressful situations.

               > Possible thinking, not just positive thinking

 Your mind is a powerful thing, and when you fill it with thoughts of what’s possible (not just positive), your mindset will start to shift.

              >When you believe something IS possible, you will notice options and opportunities coming up for you that would simply not have be noticed                  if you did not believe it was possible.

With repetition, your positive feelings will intensify, the new neural connections will strengthen, and you’ll start to notice just how awesome this new “win” really feels! Reminding yourself often of these little wins can further shift your mindset and help you embrace the bright side of your perceived “failures” or shortcomings. It also helps to simply accept that you are perfectly imperfect, just the way you are!

              > If you wouldn’t say it to your friend, don’t say it to yourself

 Your limiting beliefs are assumptions you make about reality that often aren’t true. They aren’t helpful, and they certainly don’t serve you or the goals you want to achieve. Ask yourself: would I say these negative, hurtful and unsupportive words to a friend?

Adopting empowering beliefs such as:

  •  “It is not my job to please everyone else.”
  •  “Just be me. There will never be anyone else like me.”
  •  “I am enough!”

 To swap out your limiting belief with a more empowering one, you’ll need to play a little mind game:

Convince yourself that the value you thought you were getting from the former limiting belief isn’t worthwhile, and that your new empowering belief can serve to fill this void. Take some time and make a space that’s all yours!

Ensure that you are creating space in your life for these new empowering beliefs. Take action and get into the habit of using your new beliefs as often as possible until they begin to feel comfortable, familiar and routine to you.

Just remember – you have the ability to harness the power of the possible! Overcoming negative self-talk and releasing yourself of limiting beliefs takes commitment, introspection and a good dose of self-confidence to make the necessary changes.

There’s the old saying that we view ourselves through a much harsher lens than the rest of world does. So, let’s try to bring our own lens back into focus.

Do your have a “Negative Nelly” in your head?  What is it that “Nelly” tells you?  How can you turn it around?  Leave me a comment!

 

NOW let’s start with a Guilt Free Recipe!

Positively Paleo Pie (comfort food without the guilt!)

Preheat oven to 350°F

Savory bottom layer:

1.25 lbs ground meat (free range preferable)
½ medium onion, chopped
4 large garlic cloves, minced
1 medium carrot, shredded
1 medium zucchini, shredded (not peeled)
1 Tb extra virgin olive oil
1 – 1½ tsp Himalayan pink salt or Celtic grey sea salt
1 tsp chilii powder
½ tsp cumin

Mashed cauliflower topping:

2 small (or 1 large) cauliflower heads
5-6 large roasted garlic cloves*
½ – 1 tsp salt

Optional top layer:

½ cup shredded or crumbled organic, whole milk cheese (your choice!)

How to prepare bottom layer:

1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat, and sauté onion + garlic until tender. Add the carrot + zucchini, cook until they start to soften.

2. Add the ground meat, salt, and spices. Cook until the meat is browned, and very little moisture remains.

How to prepare cauliflower:

3. Chop the cauliflower heads into small chunks, and steam until they soften – when a fork can easily pierce.

Add the steamed cauliflower, roasted garlic and salt to a food processor. On low setting, puree until smooth. It may be necessary to use the tamper if you have one.

Assemble the pie:

4. To assemble your Positively Paleo Pie, distribute the meat mixture evenly in the bottom of an 8-inch baking dish. Spread cauliflower mixture over the top, and bake for 25 minutes.

If you’re adding the optional cheese top layer, sprinkle the cheese on top after you bake it, and then broil it until the cheese turns slightly brown (~3 minutes more in the oven).

*Roasted garlic cloves – done ahead of time.

Using a sharp knife, cut ¼ inch from the top of of a whole garlic bulb to expose the individual cloves. Place bulb (unpeeled) on top of a square of aluminum foil. Drizzle a bit of olive oil over the top of the bulb, just to moisten. Wrap the bulb with foil and bake in a preheated 400°F oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the cloves feel soft when pressed. Once cooled, the whole cloves should push out easily when pressed from the bottom.

Extra roasted garlic can be used on its own as a spread on bread, crackers, sandwiches, crispbread or veggies.

(and yes, roasting the garlic really does make a difference in the flavor – magic!)

Accountabilty is always key to making lasting habit changes, even getting rid of your “Negative Nelly”. Having consistent focus and friends on the same journey -what more could you ask for?  Visit Intentionally Created – Your Healthy Journey to learn more.

 

 

 

References

Health.com: 9 Ways to Silence Your Inner Critic

Thrive Global: What are Limiting Beliefs and What Causes Them?

IQ Matrix: The Complete Guide on How to Overcome Your Limiting Beliefs

4 simple strategies to lose weight with a healthy mindset

When it comes to losing weight the healthy way, your mindset often plays a big part in whether you are or are not as successful as you envision. Approaching weight loss from the wrong perspective is one of the biggest reasons why so many people fail with diets and strict eating plans. Getting your mindset right can be a game changer for successfully managing a healthy weight.

Here are some mindset shifts that may help you to supercharge your weight loss journey and finding Your Healthy Journey!

Think About Why You’re Doing It

You have heard it said over and over…what’s your WHY? Why you want to lose weight can make a lot of difference. Basing your reasons on being happier or looking good often are a lot more likely to fail and how do you judge that losing weight will actually make you feel good about yourself or bring you happiness.

Instead of choosing these kind of reasons as the reasons for your journey, try looking at things differently. Think of your weight loss as part of a journey…Your Healthy Journey… to becoming healthier and not just a means to the the end. It’s the opportunity to introduce healthy habits into your life that set the scene for both improving your health and balancing your weight loss journey. When your ultimate goal is to live a longer and healthier life, weight loss will probably happen as an extra bonus as a result of these new habits.

Don’t Go For Broke

Trying to do too much too soon and too quickly can work against you and this is one of the reasons why fad diets and drastically reducing your calorie intake aren’t successful in the long term. You might lose some weight to begin with but chances are, this will quickly plateau and depending on your mindset and eating habits, you might even gain some extra.

When it comes to weight loss, slow and steady tends to do a lot better than trying to lose weight as quickly as possible. I am sure you have heard “Slow and Steady Wins the Race”?

You’re a lot more likely to succeed if you go for smaller shifts that add up to bigger lifestyle changes. Add in good choices and crowd out old choices. If you do this every day, they’ll soon become solid habits. This is more of a long game and you probably won’t see results immediately but there’s a better chance of actually achieving your goals compared to focusing on one big goal that could fail.

You want your healthy choices to feel natural and not like a chore or as though you’re depriving yourself and this is where healthy habits can really come into their own.

Breaking the Food-Emotions Cycle

One of the factors that can make it hard to lose weight involves emotional eating. We often eat when we’re not really hungry and often because we’re feeling certain emotions. Breaking the link between your food and your emotions is a key mindset shift to master if you want to lose and maintain.

Moving away fom emotional eating helps you to react to genuine hunger cues so you’ll eat to fuel your body and not with how you feel. Mindful eating is a great way to get back in touch with your body’s hunger signals but it can be a big challenge to master, especially if you often feel you emotional eat. Although I must say that in my 5 years of coaching, I have found very few are true amothional eaters. Finding ways to address your feelings that don’t involve food can make a huge difference in being able to lose weight naturally.

Visualizing Weight Loss Success

Visualization can be a powerful technique for weight loss, especially if it’s combined with positive self talk. Have you ever done a Vision Board? So how does visualization work? The theory is that it helps to rewire pathways in the brain. It creates a positive mindset, so it can be a great tool for breaking habits and learning new ones.

To get the most from it, visualize yourself at your ideal weight, with your body transforming into a much more positive form of energy. Keep this mental image in mind as much and as often as possible.

You can use positive affirmations and self-talk to highlight to yourself how you’ll feel when you get to this point. Don’t forget to focus on how you’ll feel with your health, fitness and wellbeing and not just how much better you’ll feel about being thinner. Think about how it will make a difference in your life and family and friends.

Even though this is going to happen in the future, keep your self-talk in the present tense and not the future to make visualization a more effective mindset shift. Start you positive affitmations eith “I am”! Tell yourself that you, only you, have the power to change your body through the power of your mind.

Doing this every day can be a lot more effective than you might think. Start making a plan for your life long goals for your health, not just the short-term ones. And join us in Your Healthy Journey by visiting Imagine Fit today.

Remember to remain body-positive. I am always here to talk if you need to. You can take advantage of the 30-minute Eat Cake Without Guilt free chat if you feel you need some 1:1 guidance. It’s my way of giving back – I’ve been on the emotional eating path and having someone to lean on is the only way to move forward.

References used.

https://www.medicinenet.com/binge_eating_disorder_pictures_slideshow/article.htm

https://www.medainc.org/binge-eating-vs-emotional-eating-whats-the-difference/

https://www.medicinenet.com/emotional_eating/article.htm#what_is_the_prognosis_of_emotional_eating

Becoming mindful…is it easy?

Becoming Mindful….Many things in our lives revolves around this issue… Mindful eating, mindful selfcare, mindful of others…we hear it all the time but what does it really mean?

The thoughts that float around in your head on a daily basis condition you in how to think and deal with situations.  For this reason, the importance of your surroundings is an essential ingredient of your mindset’s health. 

Do you surround yourself with positive people? 

Do you start your day on a positive note? 

How you choose to deal with disappointing and irritating daily life situations is another important factor to take into account.  These situations can arise often, and being on guard to combat them with positivity is imperative to maintaining a positive mindset, and having this ability to conquer negative thoughts as they arise will empower you to live a much more pleasant life.  We will work through many issues to cause this mindset shift throughout the week.

Simply put – there are positive people and there are negative people, and you luckily have the ability to choose which you’d like to be.  

  •  Conquering your mindset to become a more positive person can be easier than you might think.  Let’s go over a few key ways to conquer your mindset to create a more positive outlook:

  • Choose to begin your day with a meditation or yoga session. Quiet your mind, get in touch with yourself and begin your day with caring for your body and spirit.

  • When you feel yourself thinking in a negative tone, turn your negative thoughts into positive ones. Most of the time, our negative thoughts are just what we’re conditioned to go to first, and when we train our brains to think positively instead, true change happens.

  • Drink half of your body weight in ounces of water per day. Being and remaining properly hydrated is incredibly important to our health, including the health of our minds.  Having a clearly operating mind will allow you to make a transition much easier, and you will feel much better overall.

  • Identify with your inner voice. Many of us have been conditioned to think negatively through past experiences and self-doubt.  Realize that you are now in control of this voice, and separate yourself from the old one. 

  •  Realize that you are not perfect, and love yourself anyway. You are unique and beautiful.

  •  Be quiet.   What thoughts and emotions arise in you when you are completely still and present?

 

The psychology behind negative thinking states that it seemingly protects us from bad things happening, with the idea that we have mentally prepared ourselves for these instances.  Once you train your mind to conquer negativity with logic and reason, the harmful effects from this thought process will begin to dissipate.  Beginning to consistently think rationally and not in extremes will help combat this negativity from overtaking the mind.  Negativity breeds illness in our bodies and relationships, so this is a very sensitive and important topic to overtake. 

This is no easy task in the world we live in, and most certainly takes a lot of heart and practice to get the hang of.  Negativity is all around us – and luckily, we are in control of how to process what enters our minds.  Negative thoughts reinforce negative emotions.  What kind of people do you spend the majority of your time with?  Do you treat one-time setbacks as temporary or continual?

Assumptions lead to a great deal of negative emotions.  Going into situations without assuming the outcome is one simple step to take a great deal of negative stress off of your plate.  That family reunion you’re not ecstatic about going to, or that evaluation at your job that’s coming up next week – both are stressors that many people face.  Both of these situations could still end up being stressful situations, of course, but eliminating the unnecessary stress leading up to it is an exceptional way to improve your positive mindset and practice avoiding negativity. 

How do you stay positive?  How often do you allow yourself to slip ito the negative?  How do you pull yourself back? 

Two incredible ways to keep a positive mindset is through expressing gratitude and using affirmations.

What gives you purpose in life?

What are you grateful for on a daily basis?

Keeping a Gratitude Journal causes our minds to remain positive throughout the day, and will be our daily assignment for today.

Here’s one of my favorite journals, and it’s under $10.00

Gratitude Journal – with prompts

 

Looking forward to hearing your tips in the comments!  Leave me a note!

 

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