Wednesday, April 9, 2008

50 ways to stave off hunger

I admit that I am always hungry. Well, not actually hungry...but I feel like it. I think that it is more of a boredom hunger. I always feel like I need something to munch on. Especially when I am sitting here at the computer for hours on end. So when I found this information from Women's Health (don't worry men, most of the tips should work for you too!) I thought that it was definitely worthy of sharing with the masses. The article is from and it is called “Get Your Fill: 48 cures for an empty stomach (and 2 to look forward to)” by Morgan Lord. (The exact link is So here it is:

When you're dieting, a growling tummy is like a wedding toast: The longer it lasts, the more dangerous it gets. But your hormones, not your gut, are really to blame for most binges. Ghrelin, which makes you hungry, and leptin, your primary appetite suppressor, are eternally battling it out. Preventing these hormones from going haywire is the key to reining in calories without always feeling ravenous. So dig in—we're giving you 50 ways to fill up and conquer the growling beast that is your stomach.

1. Pack a packet Instant oatmeal beats out All Bran and Muesli for fullness factor. We love Quaker's Weight Control Maple and Brown Sugar—it tastes heavenly and has more fiber, protein, and whole grains than the regular variety.

2. Find berry treasure Raspberries are one of the most fiber-filled fruits, packing 8 grams into a cupful—a whopping 32 percent of your RDA. Add some to your cereal or yogurt.

3. Can the juice Whole fruit has a higher fiber content and makes you feel fuller than fruit juices, even those with pulp.

4. Make a dinner date A study found that women eat less than usual on dates (men tend to eat a lot more).

5. But don't eat by candlelight Dim light can trigger binge eating.

6. Better yet, make it a blind date It's worth a try—dine blindfolded and you'll eat 22 percent less food without missing it. Just watch out for the salad fork.

7. Bulk up Soluble fiber expands in your GI tract to make you feel full, so get your 25-gram RDA. That's a packet of oatmeal, two slices of whole-wheat bread, and 1 cup each of broccoli, edamame, and raw carrots.

8. Ignore diet labels One study found that after eating full-fat muffins, subjects were less hungry and ate less over the next 24 hours than after eating a fat-free version.

9. Hold your breath Just smelling a fresh-baked cupcake in the break room can induce the insulin secretion that makes you think you're hungry. Sight activates the appetite snowball too, so avert your eyes.

10. Down a multivitamin Research suggests that your body may compensate for a lack of nutrients by increasing your appetite so you'll eat more.

11. Save your bread Dodge the white wonder and go for whole wheat—it's 5.5 times more satisfying.

12. Meet meat One study found that people ate 441 fewer calories a day when following a 30 percent protein diet versus a 15 percent protein diet.

13. Eat like a cow Graze: Five evenly spaced, 350-calorie mini-meals a day will regulate your appetite and ward off sugar cravings caused by skipping meals.

14. Attempt ambidexterity Switch your fork to your nondominant hand—you'll eat much more slowly. That gives you time to recognize your couldn't-eat-another-bite feeling when it first sets in.

15. Skip soft drinks High-fructose corn syrup, the main sweetener in soda, doesn't spur insulin production to make the body process calories, nor does it trigger leptin, the hormone that tamps down appetite.

16. Trade your corkscrew for a bottle opener Participants in one study ate more food while drinking wine than while drinking beer.

17. Boost your bean count The musical fruit's high fiber content causes glucose to be released slowly into the bloodstream, preventing the sudden slumps that cause hunger spikes. Add garbanzos or black beans to soup or salad.

18. Shape up Wedge-shaped foods like pizza make it difficult to estimate proper portions. (No wonder the apple pie always goes so fast.)

19. Start with soup Have a cup of soup, such as chicken noodle or vegetable, before your entrée—you'll feel fuller sooner and eat fewer calories overall.

20. But only one cup Served buffet style, diners ate 73 percent more soup without realizing it or feeling any fuller.

21. Bag the dried fruit Go for 2 cups of grapes over a quarter cup of raisins—both are 100 calories, but the grapes' water content feels more filling.

22. Dig pop culture Because it's mostly air, popcorn is twice as filling as a candy bar or peanuts, with fewer calories. We like Pop Secret 100-calorie packs.

23. Slurp a smoothie Make it with low-fat yogurt and loads of fruit for a satiety trifecta: protein (to decrease hunger), fiber (to fill you up without extra calories), and calcium (to help burn, not store, fat).

24. Whey your options Boost that smoothie with 1 to 2 tablespoons of whey powder. New studies suggest that in addition to a protein punch, whey may affect the hormones that make you feel full. In one study, participants who ate a liquid meal made with whey ate significantly fewer calories 90 minutes later than their counterparts.

25. Go cuckoo for cocoa Participants in one study were significantly more satisfied 30 minutes after they drank low-fat chocolate milk than they were after they drank soda.

26. Crunch on raw carrots Researchers in Ireland noted that carrots are more filling when they're uncooked. Bonus: A 1-cup serving has 3.6 grams of fiber.

27. Add avocado Your body burns carbohydrates in an hour or two, so toss a little healthy fat into the mix (avocado in salad, peanut butter on bread) to buy a few hours before the pangs hit.

28. Start a pack-a-day habit Chewing gum (sugar-free or regular) suppresses your desire for sweets. (If you prefer potato chips, spit out the gum—it may make a salty craving worse.)

29. Get nutty Nosh on pine nuts—they have the most protein of any nut or seed, and the pinolenic acid they contain stimulates two powerful hunger-suppressing hormones.

30. Listen to Norah Jones Eating while listening to mellow music slows you down. It takes 20 minutes for your stomach to tell your brain it's full—that's the first seven tracks of Come Away with Me.

31. Go beyond the pale White pasta and other foods made with refined flour cause blood sugar to drop and leave you hungry again in no time. Choose whole-wheat pasta and you'll be satisfied almost twice as long.

32. Ride a roller-coaster Nausea is responsible for a subsequent loss of appetite (bring your own barf bag).

33. Get hitched A study found that happy marriages lower the risk of metabolic syndrome, which could lead to overeating. Women in consistently dissatisfying marriages were about 3 times more likely to develop metabolic syndrome. Widows carried nearly 6 times the risk.

34. Find a new china pattern Research shows that blue is a natural appetite suppressant, so using blue plates, napkins, or placemats may make you eat more slowly and realize when you're full.

35. Re-paint your dining room beige Red, yellow, and orange hues stimulate appetite and make you eat more.

36. Be antisocial On average, people who eat with one other person consume about 35 percent more than when they dine alone; at a table of four, that figure rises to 75 percent more; if you're in a party of eight you'll nearly double your intake.

37. Enjoy your salad days According to one study, women who ate a 100-calorie salad before dinner consumed 12 percent fewer calories during the meal without trying to diet or limit their intake. The fiber in the greens probably helped.

38. Choose surf over turf Fish is more satisfying, per calorie, than lean beef or chicken, according to Dr. Susanna Holt's Satiety Index, a ranking of different foods' ability to satisfy hunger.

39. Live in your own private Idaho If you need starches, yams and white potatoes (with skin) are 7 times more filling than a croissant. Sorry, French fries don't count.

40. Practice patience Before you go for seconds, wait 20 minutes. Once the leptin kicks in, you might find you're already full.

41. Declare yourself perfect Accept your body and, according to a study at Ohio State University, you're more likely to eat healthily—and not for emotional reasons.

42. Request a doggy bag Wrap up half your meal to go before you take the first bite and you're likely to eat less. Study participants who were offered a portion and a half of a food consumed 43 percent more of it and ate 25 percent more calories in the meal overall.

43. Have a seaweed spritzer When you mix agar-agar, a fiber-rich thickening agent derived from seaweed, with fruit juice, it soaks up the liquid, making you full-full. Pick it up at Whole Foods Market.

44. Make some miso When your metabolism is dragging and your energy dips, you crave foods and drinks that give you a quick lift. New research reveals that protein-rich miso soup boosts metabolism.

45. Count sheep Sleep-deprivation leads to lower leptin levels and higher ghrelin levels, boosting your appetite. Try to get at least 7 hours tonight.

46. Have a cocktail with lunch Fruit cocktail, that is. Mixed fruit can curb a sweet tooth, and it has plenty of fiber, which helps regulate your blood sugar.

47. Eject the junk Science has proven that a food's tasty appearance can trump feelings of fullness. Ask the waiter to remove your plate before you scarf the rest of those fluffy mashed potatoes.

48. Turn up the heat Temperature is a satiety signal, and the cooler a room, the more people tend to eat—which is why restaurants often keep thermostats low.

And, in the not too distant future...

49. Chew on this London researchers found that moderate doses of the "feeling full" hormone pancreatic polypeptide reduces the amount of food eaten by 15 to 20 percent. They're working on a chewing gum, but a finished product is still a good 5 years down the line.

50. Pop a pill Italian scientists looking to make a more absorbent diaper lining ended up creating a cellulose pill that expands in your stomach to ward off hunger pangs for up to 7 hours. Look for it (pending safety trials) in May 2008.


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SuffolkJason said...

There are some great tips there. Here are two more:-

1) Use smaller plates. A silly psychological trick but it works.

2) Avoid buffets. We are programmed to seek diversity in our food, so we find buffets resistible.

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