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Sunday, July 28, 2013

4 Kinds of Hunger

--> There are four kinds of hunger we need to feed. These are physical, mental, social and emotional. All are easily confused with the need for food. Knowing why you feel hungry and what you feel hungry for can help you lose weight.
1. Physical hunger: is your genuine bodily need. It is satisfied by eating nourishing food, not by junk food or the ‘wrong’ food. Although foods with no nutritional value may have bulk, they do not satisfy physical hunger. Your body wants and needs more.      
  • Physical hunger signs include: growls, pangs, hollow feelings in your stomach 
  • Mental signs of physical hunger include: fogginess, lack of concentration, headache, short temper, fatigue
2. Emotional hunger: Emotions can trigger abusive eating. Emotional eating can be a response, a defense or even habit, with no connection to your nutritional needs. It's often a reaction to loneliness, anger, emptiness, happiness, guilt, fear or stress. Emotional hunger can be satisfied by play, touch, nature, romance, music, art, love and excitement. When satisfied emotionally, people often forget about food and are instead 'high on life'. 
3. Mental hunger:  includes psychological, intellectual, social or habitual hunger.  It is satisfied by conversation, hobbies, entertainment, reading, playing games for fun. Sharing the passion of play can consume your attention to the point of forgetting to eat. Even casual encounters have an impact on satisfying this appetite. When not satisfied, mental hunger can trigger emotional eating.
4. Intuitive hunger:  is the desire for clarity, balance and protection because these are the source of success, excitement, comfort and inner peace.“Just as food is needed for the body, love is needed for the soul.” Osho
            It's natural to enjoy food. What makes food enjoyable, besides taste, is understanding what it does for your life. The food you eat is an investment in your future. Sometimes eating is like taking medicine because your body needs a nutriment to be healthy. Sometimes a food will give your skin a glow or give you a good night's sleep. Using curiosity keeps you aware of food that feels good, and food that doesn't. “Let food be thy medicine, and medicine be thy food.” Hippocrates 
         Intuitive tools, working with the 5 senses, keep clear where hunger is coming from. You can recognize if hunger is caused by stress, frustration or physical need. When you know why you're hungry, you know what to eat to feel satisfied.
         Without intuitive connections to understand the source of hunger, internal traffic jams, that feel like confusion, occur. Confusion leads to unhealthy habits and vicious cycles of frustration. Tune-in to yourself. 
         This is a excerpt from - Am I Really Hungry, 6th Sense Diet Intuitive Eating 
If you want to understand why you're eating, to stop being a victim of the diet mentality or to maintain your healthy weight intuitively, buy this book.  
“If you don’t know when you’re hungry, you don’t know when you’re full, so you won’t know when to stop eating.” Elisabetta Politi, RD, Duke University Diet &Fitness Center

Friday, July 26, 2013

Eating Appetites

Have you ever felt like you were hungry when you knew you were not? Have you ever craved ice cream after finishing off a big dinner with dessert? Hunger is compelling. It drives us because we  intuitively associate it with survival. But, hunger is not always about food.

Your appetites are sometimes driven by unpleasant sensations like boredom, anger, frustration or loneliness. These kinds of appetites are your mind or soul needing some 'food'.

But, conversation is not something you buy at the store, and friendship is not something you keep in the pantry. It's not as easy to feed your head or heart as it is to feed your body, because you're not used to recognizing this kind of appetite. However, it's real. Your appetites for stimulation, for comfort, for understanding and for affection are an important part of what makes you unique and wonderful.

These kinds of appetites are satisfied by:
  • self-respect: You acknowledge that boredom, loneliness, frustration or anger is driving you to eat.
  • determination: You decide to protect your body from self-abusive eating.
  • prudence: You weigh alternative ways of stopping the physical urge.
    • I had a client who kept a rubber band on her wrist because she realized boredom would compel her to stare into the refrigerator. Now, as soon as she starts to feel that urge, she snaps the rubber band and reminds herself, she's not really hungry.
    • Another client kept a sign on her refrigerator that said "Why?", which stopped her mindless eating. 
  • honesty: Being deeply honest with yourself means not using food to avoid what is unpleasant. It doesn't work. The fact is, it's like covering a mess on the floor with newspaper. The mess is still there.
The odd thing about this kind of appetite is that your body thinks you're hungry, but your intellect knows you are not. Our bodies are the result of our habits. If, over time, you have programmed your body to expect food when you are bored, lonely, frustrated or angry, then you will feel driven to overeat. That's why the simple rubber band works. It's a physical signal that you're okay. You can reprogram your body.

Tune-in to yourself and trust your intuition. Intuition is always self-protective. You can sense if you're making the dignified choice. Be honest and review the facts in your head. You're in charge of and responsible for you, your body and soul.  Self-respect, determination, prudence and dignity are all intuitive tools. Use them and take control.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Summer Eating Challenge, 3 Intuitive Tips

Summertime - especially at outdoor social gatherings - it's a challenge to keep your weight down. Here are 3 intuitive tips for beating the summer eating challenge.

1. Drink more water. You need it to stay hydrated, plus water will dull your hunger.  Drink between meals and between bites. If you prefer flavor, try putting cucumber slices, fruit slices or mint leaves in your water, or drink cool, naturally sweet fruit/herbal teas (with no additional sweetener).
  • How it works: 
    • Water fills you up by taking up room in your stomach so that you don't feel starved to eat. 
    • Because you sweat more in the summer, you physically need more water. You won't be running to the bathroom too often because your body will absorb the water to replace perspiration.
    • It's easy to confuse thirst with hunger. In fact, when it's really hot outside, your body may be more satisfied with water than a second helping of apple pie. If you emotionally want that 2nd piece of pie, go look at yourself in the mirror, right into your eyes, and think it over. Then do what feels right.
2. Eat smaller portions. Digesting food raises your body temperature slightly. That means, the more you eat, the more likely you are to suffer from hot weather indigestion. Eat less, socialize more.
  • How it works:
    • Eating less means you consume less calories. You feel lighter and your body isn't burdened by the task of digestion for so long. You will feel more energetic.
    • This gives you time to enjoy other physical pleasures like swimming, kissing or just relaxing. This is important because it's how to feeds other types of hunger you have - for activity, for intimacy, for relaxation.
3.  Be kind to yourself. You work hard, you're stressed and you barely take time to reflect on what really makes you happy. Stress makes you look and feel old. Before you eat, take 5 minutes to reconnect with peace of mind. Do this by breathing slowly and deeply in and out a few times, so that you really feel your body - not just your hunger - but also your heart. You matter to a lot of people.
  •  How it works:
    • When you are kind to yourself, people relate to you differently. As a result, for many reasons, you experience less stress at mealtime. Less stress means less emotional eating, less binging.
    • When you're kind to yourself, your body relaxes. When your body relaxes, it's easier to lose weight. When you're stressed, your body 'thinks' you're in danger and it will hold on to, or produce fat, to protect you from famine. 
Use your intuitive tools of determination, tenacity and self-respect to beat the summer eating challenge. Imagine how good you'll look and how good you'll feel emotionally and physically. You  won't have to depend on anyone but yourself to do it!