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SparklyUnicorn

weight loss and hunger question

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I'm constantly hungry lately.  I don't know why.  I did lose quite a bit of weight the past year (which I was trying to do).  I've been going through a phase lately where I'm just HUNGRY. 

 

Maybe I'm not eating enough, but I seriously doubt it.  I don't count calories.  (I eat low carb.)

 

So what gives?!  This is no fun.  I didn't feel this way before losing weight.  If weight loss is purely about self control, is this what it means to have self control? To feel starved all the time?  Self control is for the damn birds if that is the case.

 

(I can't take any funky supplements and no I don't have diabetes.)  Other ideas welcome though!

 

 

 

 

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Have you tried adding fat?  ETA: I mean to your diet, not to yourself.

Edited by EKS

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Are you still trying to lose weight? Often this is a sign that it's a good time to stop and maintain for a while. 

 

Other ideas: Some fat may help satiety. Or your new body might just be needing some more carbs than it did when it was heavier -- you could try adding a small amount of complex carbs. Play with it and see if either of those reduces your hunger level. 

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Have you tried adding fat?  ETA: I mean to your diet, not to yourself.

 

I eat plenty of fat.  I should have added that part.  That's the first usual recommendation on low carb.

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.  If weight loss is purely about self control, is this what it means to have self control? To feel starved all the time?  

 

 

NO!  But I'm sorry to say I don't have any more advice than fat + protein, which you say you're doing.  Just reporting that I rarely, if ever, feel starved while losing weight when I keep tabs on my fat and protein.

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This is pretty common, I think. Your body wants to get back to its set point.  I have heard of this many times.

But, it might be as simple as you are actually thirsty (easy to mistake) or are missing a nutrient that you need, and have depleted your reserves of it, so your body is responding as though it's generally hungry.  What to do about that I am not certain.  But I'd think carefully about your before and after diets and what you might be deficient in.

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Acid reflux, an ulcer, and food poisoning paranoia curb my appetite completely. I haven't been hungry in four years.

 

I mean, you didn't specify a *healthy* way to not be hungry.

 

ETA: But seriously, are you still taking Zantac? Maybe try cutting back the dose. I used to be able to "induce hunger" with a max dose of that. Doesn't work anymore though.

Edited by BarbecueMom

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I have discovered that I get super hungry before that time of the month and when I am, apparently, fighting a virus. 

 

Congratulations on your weight loss!

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Are you eating low carb for reasons other than weight loss? If not, can you add some more carbs?

Yes, I was going to suggest this. I wonder if people with weight to lose do better on low carb and those who are leaner need more carbs? I get really hungry if I don't get enough fiber. I'm much happier on a moderate-carb diet. My girls are all slender and eat similarly

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Those hungry phases suck. I was like that a lot at my lowest weight. And freezing all the time. Tea helped, the drinking kind ;). Also bulky items to eat, like hummus and celery or nice salty tuna salad. Lots of fat too. Sometimes adding a little extra mayo or butter really takes the edge off. And are you making sure you’re well hydrated and well rested? Those can both mess with hunger cues.

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are you getting enough protein?  are you getting enough fiber?  those can be filling - and will even your blood sugar.  if it spikes - it's more likely to make you hungry when it comes down.

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Is it the time of year? I find that in the fall, my hunger kicks up. 

 

I, too, eat plenty of plant fat, but what I do when my hunger kicks up and I want to eat and eat is:

 

1) first drink water. Sometimes it's really thirst instead of hunger 

 

2) have loads of high fiber/high nutrition/low calorie stuff around so that I can get FULL. I am not low carb, but these are some of the things I would have:

 

  • Homemade soups that aren't too high cal like vegetable
  • Oatmeal with pumpkin, cocoa, pumpkin spice mix and a cut up apple in it
  • Raw veges and a substantial dip like hummus
  • Popcorn with lots of spices on it (not high nutrition, but it fills me up and satisfies the crunchy need plus the spices are good for me. I make it on the stove.) 
  • Seaweed (I actually like it. If I am really ravenous, a couple packs will fill me up quick) 
  • Kale chips
  • Plain yogurt with frozen berries

 

Anyway, the key for me is being prepared with foods that give me high volume that won't add weight. 

 

I lost 60 pounds maybe 5 years ago? Gained a chunk back, re-lost it and then stayed stable. So your body can readjust its set point. 

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Those hungry phases suck. I was like that a lot at my lowest weight. And freezing all the time. Tea helped, the drinking kind ;). Also bulky items to eat, like hummus and celery or nice salty tuna salad. Lots of fat too. Sometimes adding a little extra mayo or butter really takes the edge off. And are you making sure you’re well hydrated and well rested? Those can both mess with hunger cues.

 

Yes to well rested. If you aren't getting a solid 7-8 hours sleep, make the focus getting into a good sleep pattern. You'll be hard put to fight the hormones that a poor night's sleep with set off. The hormones tend to make your body crave fuel to offset the fatigue. Your hunger hormones go up etc, etc etc. 

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If you are getting enough calories,  exercise and water, it's probably protein.  Does any protein sound good, like it would help?

 

 

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This is pretty common, I think. Your body wants to get back to its set point.  I have heard of this many times.

But, it might be as simple as you are actually thirsty (easy to mistake) or are missing a nutrient that you need, and have depleted your reserves of it, so your body is responding as though it's generally hungry.  What to do about that I am not certain.  But I'd think carefully about your before and after diets and what you might be deficient in.

Agreed, I put back on some weight due to being sick of the cold and hungry thing. I also had dry skin and hair loss; I'd lose weight really fast. So my body was saying "more food" which I stupidly answered by reverting to some bad habits. Then I did some research and found that I'd seriously depleted some vitamins. I'm taking them faithfully and getting back on track.

 

In my case, the plan I was on did include the supplement information but I'd ignored it. So maybe if you're a low carber, check the Atkins resources, or the active low carber forums if those still exist, to get some clues as to what you might be lacking.

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I find I do have to think about maintaining my weight.

 

When I go through phases of being hungry I find it helps if:

 

I drink more water

I sleep more

I pick new physical activity and add it to my weekly schedule.

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Yes to well rested. If you aren't getting a solid 7-8 hours sleep, make the focus getting into a good sleep pattern. You'll be hard put to fight the hormones that a poor night's sleep with set off. The hormones tend to make your body crave fuel to offset the fatigue. Your hunger hormones go up etc, etc etc.

OH. I've been majorly messing this up. Commuter college kids are as bad as babies for mom's sleep...they like to talk at 1 am when they finally get home...thank you for posting this.

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Well hm.  It does seem to coincide with TOM.  TOM has been a real jerk lately.  It lasts longer and comes closer together. 

 

I sleep 9-10 hours a night.  I drink plenty.  My main foods are protein, fat, vegetables....  Couldn't get more perfect I don't think.  I snack on stuff like nuts and cheese and raw veggies.  I have allowed a few more carbs, but I'm still low carb and don't really want to change that. 

 

I suppose it is possible I am just not eating enough.  I'm not exercising more per se, but I've been crazy busy lately so I'm overall probably more active.

 

I'm down to one 30 mg of Prevacid.  After 5 months I am trying 15 mg.  I'll probably never be able to go off it completely, but I'm not on crazy doses and haven't had any heartburn issues (and yes nothing curbs hunger better than an ulcer...BTDT..LOL). 

 

I dunno, but it's annoying sometimes.  Sometimes I can be starved and then I just go to bed and wake up completely not hungry and don't get hungry until noon time.  Like I couldn't even force myself to eat.  Makes no dang sense. 

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Well hm. It does seem to coincide with TOM. TOM has been a real jerk lately. It lasts longer and comes closer together.

 

I sleep 9-10 hours a night. I drink plenty. My main foods are protein, fat, vegetables.... Couldn't get more perfect I don't think. I snack on stuff like nuts and cheese and raw veggies. I have allowed a few more carbs, but I'm still low carb and don't really want to change that.

 

I suppose it is possible I am just not eating enough. I'm not exercising more per se, but I've been crazy busy lately so I'm overall probably more active.

 

I'm down to one 30 mg of Prevacid. After 5 months I am trying 15 mg. I'll probably never be able to go off it completely, but I'm not on crazy doses and haven't had any heartburn issues (and yes nothing curbs hunger better than an ulcer...BTDT..LOL).

 

I dunno, but it's annoying sometimes. Sometimes I can be starved and then I just go to bed and wake up completely not hungry and don't get hungry until noon time. Like I couldn't even force myself to eat. Makes no dang sense.

OMG, leading up to TOM I could eat everything in the house and still be hungry.

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I keep a jar of peanuts in the car for when I get low blood sugar. It helps a lot. Maybe some high protein source like that would help you.

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Are you exercising, and if so, how much per week and what type of exercise are you doing?

 

3x per week...brisk walking/random inclines on a treadmill...also additional walking (around the park, etc.).

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I lost 60 pounds over about 15 months, and I was often hungry. Not overwhelming, but just hungry. I was doing everything right and even asked my gastro NP, and she said some people have more responsive nerves in their tummy and are going to feel hunger more than others.Even maintaining now, I often feel a little hungry.

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I lost 60 pounds over about 15 months, and I was often hungry. Not overwhelming, but just hungry. I was doing everything right and even asked my gastro NP, and she said some people have more responsive nerves in their tummy and are going to feel hunger more than others.Even maintaining now, I often feel a little hungry.

 

I feel a lot hungry.

 

I find it quite frustrating. 

 

I think that's a rather odd explanation.  Extra responsive nerves in their tummy?  Mmmm...not sure I buy it. 

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Are you still losing? Maybe your body is at the point you need to shift to maintanence and you need to up your calories a bit??

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Are you still losing? Maybe your body is at the point you need to shift to maintanence and you need to up your calories a bit??

 

I have upped a bit.

 

I'm not trying to lose per se.  A couple more pounds would be fine.  I am not really working at it though.  KWIM?  I'm happy with where I'm at. 

 

It's difficult though cuz I don't count anything really.  I don't like counting.  I was doing well going by hunger and eating until satisfied.  That worked great until I found I was hungry after a big meal... And hungry at times I didn't used to be hungry.  Just dang hungry.

 

Except now.  I am not hungry.  I almost never wake up hungry. 

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I have upped a bit.

 

I'm not trying to lose per se.  A couple more pounds would be fine.  I am not really working at it though.  KWIM?  I'm happy with where I'm at. 

 

It's difficult though cuz I don't count anything really.  I don't like counting.  I was doing well going by hunger and eating until satisfied.  That worked great until I found I was hungry after a big meal... And hungry at times I didn't used to be hungry.  Just dang hungry.

 

Except now.  I am not hungry.  I almost never wake up hungry. 

So you don't have to count, when you are really hungry go back for another serving of something, maybe just once a day or every other day. To switch to maintenance you are going to have to eat more because obviously, you have been at a deficit for awhile because you are losing weight. How long have you been losing weight? It seems like it has been months. It is probably going to take some tweaking to change gears. Sometimes too we get below a set point our body likes and it fights hard to get back to that point.

Edited by soror
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I lost 60 pounds over about 15 months, and I was often hungry. Not overwhelming, but just hungry. I was doing everything right and even asked my gastro NP, and she said some people have more responsive nerves in their tummy and are going to feel hunger more than others.Even maintaining now, I often feel a little hungry.

 

This is my life.

 

I lost over 60 pounds as a young adult (about 30 years ago!) and, other than a brief blip due to undiagnosed hypothyroidism, for the most part I've kept it off. Hunger is a constant, never ending battle. I've experimented with many ways of eating, lifestyle changes, etc. I don't know what it's like to not be hungry unless (1) I've had a meal within the last hour or (2) I have a GI illness.

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So you don't have to count. Sometime when you are really hungry go back for another serving of something, maybe just once a day or every other day. 

 

This is harder than dieting.  Seriously....

 

LOL

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This is harder than dieting.  Seriously....

 

LOL

Well, yeah, what is it they say, losing weight is the "easy" part, keeping it off is the hard part. 

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Well, yeah, what is it they say, losing weight is the "easy" part, keeping it off is the hard part. 

 

I don't like the hard part.

 

People say eat stuff like popcorn.  Ok. I went to the movies a couple of weeks ago and ate a large tub pretty much by myself.  Stuff like that is not satisfying to me!  At least I got it out of my system.  I am no longer curious about if I'd like to snack on popcorn.  The thought makes me wanna gag.  LOL

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Well, yeah, what is it they say, losing weight is the "easy" part, keeping it off is the hard part. 

 

No kidding.

 

It's like (for me) the difference between doing a spring cleaning (I can get that done) and managing to keep the place clean on a daily basis (hahaha). 

 

When you're losing the weight, you've got goals, you've got measurable progress, you can see things happening. Maintaining, it's ... seeing something NOT happen, and that's just so much less motivating. 

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Hormonal issue, especially given that you aren't hungry when you wake up. Try googling about leptin and grehlin and see if they talk about fluctuations from morning to evening? But I'd say hormones...if your TOM is approaching that always does it for me. I do find that getting more salt helps...sometimes I'm craving salt, not food. Hot beverages help. 

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I just turned 43 and the last year or so I feel like I'm hungry ALL THE TIME, I eat plenty, but still feel hungry and the weight is starting to creep up, so I feel ya, I get really weird stomach pains, even after I've had plenty to eat, I wish I could figure it out.

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Are you completely full after meals?  I do better when I eat a good lunch and good dinner, and feel very full and satisfied after both.

 

If I'm not completely full after those meals, then it's like I'm hungry all afternoon, and all evening before bed.

 

Also, I don't think it's completely unusual to not be hungry in the morning.  I can wake up in the middle of the night starving, even as late as 4am.  But as soon as I'm actually up for the day, my appetite is completely gone.  It's been that way for years.  So I've gotten in the habit of just eating a protein bar in the mornings, once I can stomach it.  

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3x per week...brisk walking/random inclines on a treadmill...also additional walking (around the park, etc.).

That's moderate enough that you shouldn't have a big increase in hunger due to exercise.

Edited by trulycrabby

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Oh, and some people feel acid reflux as hunger. If this started when you decreased your reflux meds I'd try bumping them up again to see if that makes the hunger go away. 

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Oh, and some people feel acid reflux as hunger. If this started when you decreased your reflux meds I'd try bumping them up again to see if that makes the hunger go away. 

 

Not having any reflux.

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I have upped a bit.

 

I'm not trying to lose per se.  A couple more pounds would be fine.  I am not really working at it though.  KWIM?  I'm happy with where I'm at. 

 

It's difficult though cuz I don't count anything really.  I don't like counting.  I was doing well going by hunger and eating until satisfied.  That worked great until I found I was hungry after a big meal... And hungry at times I didn't used to be hungry.  Just dang hungry.

 

Except now.  I am not hungry.  I almost never wake up hungry. 

What about a glass of Metamucil a couple times a day. Check with your doctor and don't take within 2 hours of meds and no later than 3 hours before bedtime. You may find the extra fiber helps with keeping you full.

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What about a glass of Metamucil a couple times a day. Check with your doctor and don't take within 2 hours of meds and no later than 3 hours before bedtime. You may find the extra fiber helps with keeping you full.

 

I eat a ton of fiber already.  Believe me...more fiber and I'd be hugging the toilet all day.

 

Metamucil has sugar.  But I do often use psyllium husk powder in low carb baked goods.  Which is basically the same thing without the sugar. 

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I eat a ton of fiber already.  Believe me...more fiber and I'd be hugging the toilet all day.

 

Metamucil has sugar.  But I do often use psyllium husk powder in low carb baked goods.  Which is basically the same thing without the sugar. 

There is Metamucil with artificial sweetener and there are some without as well. Putting it in baked goods is great but I am not sure if it has the same effect as taking a heaping tablespoon in glass of water followed by another plain glass of water. Of course you would have to work up to this and check with your doctor. Atkins recommended this in one of his books. You do have to make sure you drink plenty of water though so as to not cause constipation with it.

 

This link may have it but I read some of the reviews who said they were sent the artificially sweetened product. I have seen plain psylium husks though at Trader Joe's, Amazon, and Whole Foods.

 

https://www.amazon.com/Metamucil-Smooth-Texture-Sugar-Free-Unflavored/dp/B0039283FU/ref=sr_1_1_a_it?ie=UTF8&qid=1508945157&sr=8-1&keywords=unsweetened%2Bmetamucil&th=1

Edited by NoPlaceLikeHome

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This is harder than dieting. Seriously....

 

LOL

Maintenance is way harder. It’s a constant dance between eating enough but not too much.

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Not having any reflux.

 

What I meant was, you don't feel any reflux, you just feel hunger. But it's from stomach acid. 

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Two things - before I had my reflux under control I would often feel hungry, but it was actually acid. I rarely have that problem anymore, but on the occasional nights that I do experience reflux while sleeping, I am extra hungry in the evening. I don't feel anything else until the acid comes up in the middle of the night and causes me to choke. Also, a few years before menopause, my TOM was really wacky - long cycles, less time between followed by a few months off. I was hungry all the time then! I was low carb for some of that time and it didn't help at all. Thankfully the hunger thing went away post-menopause. On my current diet, I eventually started getting hungry and even shaky a lot (after about 25 pounds lost), so I added in more fruit, some beans and the occasional bowl of oatmeal. I feel much better now and I'm still losing weight. My carbs are currently between 80 - 150g a day, up from 40 - 60, and an average of 35g of fiber. 

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