Regardless of whether you’re trying to bulk or cut, being hungry all the time is not a fun experience. Most would say the latter (cutting and trying to lose weight) would be worse since being hungry all the time could lead you to binge or overeat, putting you into a caloric surplus.
However, there is some good news to be shared. There are tips and tricks you can implement into your nutrition plan and meals to help you feel more satiated and help keep you feeling full throughout the day.
In this article, we will look at five ways to make your meals more filling so that you aren’t hungry all the time.
Let’s dig in!
1. Load Your Plate with Protein
Regardless of your health and fitness goals, protein should always be a priority. When bulking, protein helps build lean muscle mass. When cutting, it helps preserve lean muscle mass. In this instance, and when talking about helping prevent you from feeling hungry all the time, protein has been found to help you feel more satiated and with less food needing to be consumed.
Protein can help reduce ghrelin levels (a hunger hormone), which can help you feel fuller both during and following meals. It is recommended to include a quality protein source with every meal or snack, including nuts, chicken, fish, meat, soy, tofu, and eggs.
2. Add Fiber to Your Meals
If you find you’re hungry all the time, consider adding more fiber to your meals. While fiber has been known to improve overall health and improve digestion, it has also been found to help reduce appetite. In most cases, the increase in satiety is due to it taking the body longer to digest fiber. When you include high-fiber foods in your meals, it can help slow stomach emptying, increasing the time it takes to digest your meals.
There are many beneficial fibrous foods you can add to your meals, such as beans, whole grains, apples, broccoli, green leafy vegetables, avocado, nuts, and many others.
3. Drink a Glass of Water Before a Meal
This is one of the oldest tricks in the book, but for some reason, people forget to utilize it in their everyday lives. If you want to “trick” your body into thinking it’s full rather than being hungry all the time, drink a glass of water before your meals.
The added volume in your stomach can not only help minimize the amount of food you consume during meals (which is great for those looking to lose weight and better manage their caloric intake), but it can make you fuller faster.
Even better, if it’s the middle of the afternoon and you start to feel your stomach churning, but it’s not time to eat yet, the same trick can be applied. Drink a glass of water to help hold you over until your next meal.
Sometimes you can even confuse hunger with thirst. Therefore, sipping water throughout the day can be a game-changer when you are hungry all the time.
4. Use Vegetables to Increase Meal Volume
Next on our list is vegetables. While not the most exciting thing to load up your plate with, vegetables not only add vital nutrients that your body needs, but vegetables also allow you to fill up your plate without taking in a bunch of calories.
If you’re looking to add bulk to your meals to help you feel full, try vegetables like lettuce, spinach, broccoli, alfalfa sprouts, arugula, cucumbers, radishes, celery, mushrooms, and asparagus.
5. Chew Slower and Take Your Time Eating
Have you ever gone from hungry all the time to complete stuffed? That tends to happen when you eat quickly before leptin (a satiating hormone) kicks in. When you eat, your stomach relays signals to the brain to tell it when it’s full. Leptin is released to tell you to stop eating.
An issue that many people face is that they eat way too quickly, which can cause you to be in a caloric surplus by the end of the day. If you slow down when you eat and chew your food more, you not only help put less stress on the digestive system, but it allows your body the necessary time to relay the signals, release leptin, and tell you to put the fork down.
Additionally, you may find you enjoy your meals more because you’re tasting all the flavors rather than inhaling everything as quickly as possible.
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Disclaimer: This content is for informational purposes only and is not meant as medical advice, nor is it to diagnose or treat any medical condition. Please consult your physician before starting or changing your diet or exercise program. Any use of this information is at the sole discretion and responsibility of the user.