How Can You Feel Fuller for Longer?

How Can You Feel Fuller for Longer?It's 15h00 on your watch as you crawl towards the kitchen (AGAIN) for your third round of afternoon snacks... You wonder if there's any biscuits left in the cookie jar. Maybe you'll have some chips? But you feel desperate to find something to eat! 

How can you be this hungry if you ate lunch a mere two hours ago?! You had your usual lunch break in front of your computer screen...

Why is your stomach growling again?

If this sounds familiar, here are some tips that might help you! 
We need to take a look at WHAT we are eating, HOW we behave regarding food and WHY we want to eat, to solve this dilemma. So many people are confronted with this - especially when they are trying to eat less, be healthier or lose weight. So, read on!

1. Fiber

This basically acts as a sponge - attracting water or fluids to fill up the stomach. Then, this tricks the brain that there are sufficient contents in the stomach. Your brain knows it shouldn't make the "hunger hormones" which lets you know it's time to eat, just yet.
Fiber is a complex structure. It gets digested a lot slower than other refined foods and "simple" starches. The slow digestion gives the body more time to extract energy from the food item, giving you energy for longer times AND staying there for longer (keeping you full).

2. Protein

When we eat and digest protein, it breaks down into amino-acids that circulate the body. These amino acids release signals to halt the production of "hunger hormones".
Protein may slow down the digestion of foods. This will then "stay" longer in your stomach (yes you guessed it - AND KEEP YOU FULLER!) By circulating inside your body, it  gives you energy for longer times: You won't feel like you're getting tired and "HANGRY".

3. Mindful - without distractions & Chew

Pay attention to WHAT you are eating and HOW you eat. This can be crucial in feeling fuller for longer. We need to pay attention to the eating process in order to improve our satiety levels.

  • Chew your food well - let your mind know you are in fact EATING! Be aware of exactly what you eat, and how much. This might also give your taste buds adequate time to taste the food; improving the enjoyment of the meal. 
  • Avoid eating and snacking in front of the TV, while you're busy on the computer, or distracted with tasks: Sit at a table and give your full attention to your meal. When eating while watching TV or reading (or being distracted), we don't notice how much we are consuming. We end up eating more than we know or intended to.
  • Beware of LARGE packaged snacks or foods. Overeating can easily happen if we sit with the whole punnet of grapes on our laps!  Portion out the snack or food you want... Place your snack or food in a plate or bowl.  
By eating consciously our intake will alter dramatically! We become more aware of our eating. We can also then be alerted as soon as we are "full" as we are available to receive this message from the brain. If we are distracted like when watching TV, we ignore that signal and keep eating long after we actually reached satiety

4. Fill up on low-energy foods

Low-energy foods are items that pack a punch in terms of vitamins, minerals, fiber, water and other good stuff while not carrying along tons of calories with it... So basically: Eat more, but less calories. Low energy foods are mostly fresh vegetables and fruit. It can be raw, steamed, roasted or boiled. For tips on healthy cooking methods check out our blog post on that topic here.

Some great options are:

  • 1 serving of fruit as part of your snack (1 apple; 13 grapes; 1 small banana)
  • Soup (Make your own nutritious soup with fresh vegetables: Spinach, broccoli, baby marrows, carrots, mushrooms, onion, garlic and tomatoes). Skip the bread however!  
  • Raw veggie-sticks: Snap-peas; carrots; celery; broccoli; cucumbers; tomatoes etc. 

When choosing low-energy food, we should also remember to avoid "energy-dense" foods as they contribute intense amounts of calories but without any "substance" to assist with satiety. These culprits include: Sodas and high sugar items (sweets, treats, chocolates); Refined or simple carbohydrates and starches like "white flour" products: White bread, cakes, cookies etc. For more information on high sugar foods and where sugar can be found in  foods, check out our blog on that topic here.

5. PECKISH? Hmm... Are you sure you're hungry?

Whenever you start reaching for yet another snack, remember to first ask yourself these quick questions:

  • Am I thirsty?
  • Am I stressed?
  • Am I bored?

If you answer yes to any one of these questions, chances are you're snacking for the wrong reasons! Try to drink a big glass of water first. Then get busy: Go for a walk, put on some music or read a few pages of your book. If you're still hungry after 15 minutes - go ahead and grab a healthy snack!
How Can You Feel Fuller for Longer?

By choosing the best foods at the right times, you can stay fuller for longer - reaching your health and weight goals sooner! Be aware of HOW you eat as well to recognize the satiety signals your brain is sending you. 

Eat Mindfully - Eat the Better Choice - Eat for the Right Reasons

Watch the video below on this topic!

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