Do you feel like you're ALWAYS ravenous, and can't understand why? Is being hangry something you're far too familiar with? Then you need to try these healthy ideas.
Choose satiating foods that satisfy your hunger.
Satiety can be described as the feeling of fullness and loss of appetite that happens after eating. And you probably won't be surprised to hear that it's affected not just by the quantity of food that you eat, but what you eat (which explains why some of us have a limitless appetite for crisps, but not broccoli!).
Different foods affect satiety differently, and scientists have devised a satiety index to help determine how satisfied you feel after eating certain foods. We know that the top six stomach-fillers are eggs, white potatoes, oatmeal, beans, fish, broth-based soups (chicken and vegetable).
Eat more protein.
Studies show that protein is the most filling of all the macronutrients, beating fat and carbs to the top of the belly-busting rankings. Protein also boosts metabolism more than any other macronutrient. If you feel hungry shortly after eating, it could well be that your meals are too carb-based and don't contain enough protein (big bowl of pasta, we're looking at you!). Excellent sources of protein include cheese, lean meats, fish, beans, pulses, tofu, nuts, and seeds. Try and include at least one of these in every meal.
Get more sleep.
The quantity and quality of sleep have been shown to play an important role in regulating the hormone ghrelin, also known as the "hunger hormone." Ghrelin is produced by the stomach and increases appetite, so the higher the levels of ghrelin, the more you want to eat! Studies continuously show that poor sleep is linked to hunger and weight gain, and that's because when you're sleep-deprived, your body makes more of this hunger hormone.
Up your fiber intake.
Fiber provides bulk and helps to enhance feelings of fullness. It may also slow down the emptying of the stomach, and increase digestion time, and by doing this, help prevent sugar cravings and dips in energy. You can eat more fiber by including plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans and pulses in your diet. Make sure you avoid eating refined carbs too (these are your white bread, rice, pasta, and flour products), as these have had all the fiber stripped from them.
Pile your plate with extra veggies and salad.
Not only are they packed with fiber, but they are what are known as "low energy density foods." In other words, they are bulky but have a high water content, so they fill you up without adding lots of extra calories to your meal. Starting a meal with a small salad or a bowl of vegetable soup can be a great way of making it more satiating. And you're much less likely to want a raid the fridge later on!
This article originally appeared on Cosmopolitan.com/uk. Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.