Am I REALLY hungry…

27 Sep

…or just not stuffed?  It’s honestly hard to know.  How can I still feel hungry after eating a ‘normal portion-sized’ meal?  Last Tuesday for lunch, I had a can of tuna mixed with capers, red onion and part non-fat sour cream and part olive oil mayo.  With this I had a stick of celery, 10 baby carrots, a pickle, 10 baked crackers and a nectarine. 

When you look at this list it’s a LOT of food. 

Of course, I ate it in front of the TV (which is another matter for a later date), so I wasn’t really aware of my hunger level as I ate.  But, I would say I never felt full.  Maybe I was a normal person’s full.  But, my overly stuffed full, I was not – which actually feels kind of good.  The problem is it also feels weird.  I feel like I should still be eating.  And, it also leads to a false sense of, “Well, I didn’t eat THAT much for lunch.  I’m sure I can have something else.”

About a half an hour after I eat, I feel satiated (not to be confused with full), which I guess is satisfied.  Right, normal eaters?  Then about an hour or so after I eat, I swear I think I feel hungry again.  I don’t think I really am hungry, but that’s my inexperienced assessment.

The absence of one sensation doesn’t necessarily mean the opposite is taking its place.  There IS gray in between the black and white – a BUNCH of shades, which is another lesson I need to learn.  I know I’ve heard it said that a 1 – 10 scale* should be applied to your hunger level, and I think that’s a tool I need to put in my arsenal.

  • 10: Stuffed. You are so full you feel nauseous.
  • 9: Very uncomfortably full. You need to loosen your clothes.
  • 8: Uncomfortably full. You feel bloated.
  • 7: Full. A little bit uncomfortable.
  • 6: Perfectly comfortable. You feel satisfied.
  • 5: Comfortable. You’re more or less satisfied, but could eat a little more.
  • 4: Slightly uncomfortable. You’re just beginning to feel signs of hunger.
  • 3: Uncomfortably hungry. Your stomach is rumbling.
  • 2: Very uncomfortable. You feel irritable and unable to concentrate.
  • 1: Weak and light-headed. Your stomach acid is churning.

The bottom line here is, I don’t have to feel stuffed to be satisfied.  It’s okay to feel the absence of being too full, with a little touch of ‘I could see where I might be hungry in a few hours’ sprinkled in for garnish. 

This is all so new to me (though I’ve dabbled a bit in the past). 

I wonder if the day will come when these ‘new’ sensations will become old hat.  I kind of hope so, though I don’t want to forget the time when they felt new and taught me some much needed lessons.  Of course, by then, I’ll probably have newer new sensations to deal with!  

*This scale courtesy of Bob Greene’s The Best Life Diet

6 Responses to “Am I REALLY hungry…”

  1. Susan Sopp September 27, 2011 at 9:17 pm #

    I like that scale of hunger : ) I absolutely HATE feeling STUFFED now but mind you it’s been almost 10 years since I cut back. Yes I also agree there will be new sensations to deal with. The newest one I have is trying to stay away from the SWEET TOOTH sensation. I ALMOST ate something sweet today and then noticed the container of garden fresh CHERRY tomatoes which are actually a bit sweet and ate a hand full of those. I DO NOT always do so well though : ) I LOVE THIS BLOG! Thanks for letting me be in on it. CARPE DIEM oh cousin of mine!

  2. Rebecca Sopp September 27, 2011 at 11:24 pm #

    Whenever I feel “hungry” (and I know I shouldn’t be) it is usually because I am bored and eating is something fun to do 🙂 Whenever this happens I quickly try to think of something else to occupy myself with… like taking the dog for a little walk, make some tea and read a book or magazine, call someone and chat for a while, etc. (usually getting out of the house works best for me). Does this sound like a good idea?

  3. Dee Banuelos September 28, 2011 at 2:49 am #

    I know watching TV is a HUGE trigger for me to start snacking. Have you ever gotten up to check the cupboard for a snack….there’s nothing there….and then check it again 3 more times later on just in case you might have missed something? LOL. TV can be the devil when trying to lose weight!

    • Kendall September 28, 2011 at 5:03 am #

      Oh yes, I’ve done that, too, Dee. Like maybe the Keebler elves put a batch of cookies in the cupboard while I was sitting on the couch! = )

  4. Dora D. September 29, 2011 at 8:20 pm #

    Kendall, when you described your lunch, I thought: wow, that’s so healthy! Give yourself points for all the fruits and veg you eat, for the whole grains, for the interesting variety. Perhaps your lunch was so healthy that you just wanted something less healthy on top of it…perhaps a square of dark chocolate would squelch that need?

    • Kendall September 29, 2011 at 9:22 pm #

      Oh yes, I think there is always room for a square of dark chocolate. Good idea! I’m going to WF tomorrow for a few things and think I’ll pick up some of the good dark stuff! My friend Jenn also told me about some gluten free crackers I’m going to try Mary Gone Crackers…I’m going to look for those, too.

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