Can You Read Your Hunger Signs?
Back in our ancestors days, hunger was a sign that your body was running low on available fuel.
Today, hunger could of course still mean that. But because we do not live with the same struggle of now knowing when the next meal would be, your hunger signals could also mean something completely different.
A lot of hunger we feel today is in fact NOT because we are running out of fuel. The rise of the obesity epidemic in the world is telling us something else. We are eating more fuel than we need, and storing the excess calories in our fat cells.
I believe that hunger more often is a sign of three things:
- Too much stress.
- Suppression of negative emotions
Today I want to talk about the latter, and I believe it being much more impactful on your hunger signs and eating habits than stress alone. But they are both usually very much linked together as usually with negative emotions there will be a stress response.
Normal hunger usually creeps up on you slowly, and often you will feel hunger in your stomach. You might also feel that you are loosing your energetic flare when you wait for too long, which is often the case if your blood sugar is dropping.
But whenever you feel and instant wave of hunger or cravings for something, the first thing you need to do is to ask why.
Whenever you pause for a second and don’t react to what you are feeling, you can find the answer to that question.
When you find that answer, one or the three from above, you are acknowledging what is happening. That alone can have a huge positive impact on what you do next, as often we will turn to food to AVOID facing the real answer to the hunger signs.
When I started asking why I wanted to run to the store and buy a chocolate bar out of nowhere, I realised that I was trying to suppress my stress and anxiety from being overworked or from something that I took in the wrong way.
From there I could CHOOSE to not react, and to look at my emotion rationally. From there I could still CHOOSE to go and get the chocolate if I really wanted, or I could go for a walk and calm down… because in reality, I wasn’t actually hungry.
However, it’s worth mentioning that food gives you a rush of dopamine, which WILL elevate how you feel. But you need to know it’s only temporary, and the issue will remain until you do something about it. Often it also leads you to overeating and feeling guilty about it, which is a double negative as you now have more negative emotions to deal with
It takes some time and a whole lot of honesty with oneself to start looking at food as a mean for fuel rather than something you use to suppress what’s going on. It is not easy to start feeling what you are feeling and try to resist what your body is telling you to do by instinct.
But if your goal is to transform you body and health, as well as to live in harmony and peace, this is one key factor that you have to start working on. The good thing is that the more you practice, the easier it becomes. As you stop suppressing and reacting to what you feel you will find that everything else becomes easier to manage too.