In the quest for weight loss and better health, the more tricks you’ve got up your sleeve the better.
And that’s what we’re all about here. So let’s get into it.
Presenting… Appetite control strategies that work!
In 2010, The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition published a report called “Skipping breakfast.” It outlines the results of a 20-year study of 2184 young Australian adults, comparing the health impact of skipping breakfast versus eating breakfast.
Researchers found that those who skipped breakfast had a bigger waistline than the breakfast-eaters. And higher cholesterol levels, too.
It makes sense. If you skip breakfast, you’re probably going to graze throughout the day. You’ll likely find yourself reaching for more sugar-rich and fat-filled foods along with more soft drinks.
So it turns out the eating a nutritious breakfast is a winning appetite control strategy. But what to eat for breakfast?
Not some sugary concoction in a box. Oatmeal is far better. And the reason oatmeal porridge makes a great breakfast is simple. It digests slowly, which means it’s releasing its energy over a longer period… helping to power you through the morning.
Better still, sprinkle some raw oat bran on your breakfast. It’s a big performer in the dietary fiber department.
If you’re new to having oatmeal for breakfast, start with a small amount and build up. That way your body will become accustomed to an increase in fiber intake. By starting small, you should be able to avoid gas and the sensation of bloating which can happen when your body is used to a low-fiber diet.
When we eat fast, fewer of the fullness hormones are released, according to a study published in The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.
By eating more slowly, you’ll take in 4x fewer calories per minute than gobblers. That’s from another study, done at the University of Rhode Island.
Two tips to do this are: put your knife and fork down between bites, and breathe deeply during your meal. And there’s no need to empty the plate. Just stop eating when you start to feel full.
When you exercise, the exertion releases body fat from its various storehouses and converts it into blood sugar. In turn, your elevated blood sugar level suppresses your appetite. The result is that food cravings are reduced. You don’t feel the same compelling urge to eat something.
But there’s more to it than that. When you feel full, that’s because the neurons involved in satiety have sent “we’re full down here” messages to your brain. Researchers have discovered that exercise restores the sensitivity of those neurons.
It’s another way that physical activity is good for your health.
Fat is satisfying. That’s why fast food is high in fat.
Fat also slows down the stomach-emptying process so you feel fuller longer.
Nuts, avocados, and extra virgin olive oil are good sources of these good fats. When those fats reach your small intestine, they help to quieten those hunger pangs. How? By releasing hormones that moderate your hunger contractions.
Fats (along with proteins) digest more slowly than carbohydrates. So they are more satiating, leaving you with that full feeling longer. And while you feel full, your biology is not driving you to eat again.
At Arizona State University, they took the same amount of food and cut it into smaller pieces. Result: the college students consumed fewer calories compared to those whose food was served in bigger pieces. A simple enough tactic, right?
One of the strategies used successfully by weight reduction counselors is smaller plates. Leave the biggest dinner plates in the cupboard and use a smaller size. When you serve a smaller meal on a smaller plate, it somehow looks more than the same quantity of food on a bigger plate. It’s an easy trick to help cut down on overeating.
You might initially laugh at the idea, thinking your brain is too smart to fall for that, but it’s true. This deceptively simple strategy has been tried and tested. And proven!
In 2016, the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics published a report called “Increased Protein Consumption Linked to Feelings of Fullness.” This confirmed what many of us know from experience: that high-protein foods (such as chicken) make you feel fuller longer. Why? According to the lead researcher Richard Mattes, protein appears to activate the release of satiety hormones.
Don’t forget the appetite-taming value of water. A drink before a meal is a simple and easy appetite control strategy. Inexpensive, too. If you have a hard time drinking water, one option to get the liquid into your body is a vegetable broth. It will fill you up but has few calories. Herbal tea is another effective alternative to straight water.