The Secret Ingredient to Diminish Head Hunger
How often do you catch yourself grazing? You know that slight nagging hunger that makes you reach for a snack or two or more. Grazing can be one of the biggest habits to overcome; and one of the most damaging in terms of adding weight. Furthermore rarely does grazing involve foods of nutritional value. The interesting thing about grazing is that often the root cause of this hunger is not what it seems.
Oftentimes, the source of this hunger is actually dehydration because not having enough water can cause you to feel hungry, even after a big meal. Yes, if you’ve ever caught yourself grazing shortly after a meal you might have actually been dehydrated. If the body is lacking in water, it will crave anything that can offer refreshment, including food. This phenomenon, known as head hunger is further exacerbated by poor dietary and lifestyle choices including:
• Drinking significant quantities of coffee or other caffeinated beverages. Caffeine is a diuretic, meaning it flushes water out of the body.
• Drinking alcohol. Similarly, alcoholic drinks can cause dehydration, one of the reasons why we have such painful hang-overs a day later.
• A diet high in sodium. No matter how low in calories, excess sodium can cause dehydration and bloating too. With so many processed foods containing massive amounts of sodium, it’s no wonder we’re always hungry.
• Diabetics and pre-diabetics may lose more water than most as the body tries to flush excess glucose through increased urine output.
• Certain prescription medications, ironically often needed because of excess weight, can cause additional urination.
• Stress, crash diets and a host of other issues can trigger head hunger too.
That’s why one of the most important parts of a healthy diet is to consume plenty of water which offers the benefits of increased energy and feeling fuller. And those benefits help encourage us to live an active, healthy life which means those frustrating cases of head hunger may diminish.
The exact amount of water to consume depends on the patient, the climate and their activity level. The rule of thumb is 64 ounces per day, which should be sufficient to get all the benefits staying hydrated, however some patients may require even more. Remember, by the time you feel thirsty, you’re already dehydrated. Now, we’ll readily admit that consuming 64 ounces, or 8 glasses, per day can be pretty difficult, but there’s no getting around it. Some like to tote a gallon of water everywhere they go, while others prefer more frequent refills of smaller bottles. There’s no wrong way to hit the water quota.
In the end, consuming adequate quantities of water can stave off head hunger and mitigate many diet-busting lifestyle issues. Plus, it’ll help you decipher when that hunger is real, allowing you to truly enjoy your food. If you feel hungry shortly after a big meal or during times when you really shouldn’t be, take a glass of water, wait 20 minutes and see how you feel. You could cut hundreds of calories from your diet every single day.
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