"Bottomless Pit" hunger issues?


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Today went pretty well. Had an excellent frittata for breakfast and ate my fill. In fact, it was so filling that I skipped lunch (breakfast was late, around 11:30, since I slept in this morning); although I thought I probably should eat, I just wasn't hungry enough to try. No snacking or urge to go off track.

Dinner rolls around and I have a huge pile of kale 'chips' with one and a half chicken breasts (pretty small, I think about 4-5oz for a full piece) in a tomato sauce. Also had a small handful combo of olives and dry roasted almonds. So far so good, right? Still hungry after that, so I have another piece of chicken (made extra to have for lunch tomorrow). Also had a glass of kombucha topped with sparkling mineral water. Still feeling the urge to eat afterwards, but I figured at this point it was more wanting to eat than being hungry: I rarely eat that much at one meal. About an hour (and a few glasses of water) later I'm still feeling ravenous, and pretty sure it's not just "a craving" anymore. Ended up trying out some whipped coconut cream with about half a dozen blackberries, along with another handful of almonds. Feeling like I'm moving along towards binging at this point and forced myself to put them away. Okay, I won't be eating the whole bag tonight: victory. However, I'm still feeling incredibly hungry, like I didn't just eat anything that I just ate. Remember being a kid and having a growth spurt where you could put everything in the pantry away, no sweat? That's what I'm feeling like.

At this point, after everything I've had and past the point of meal time heading into "don't eat a couple hours before bed" time, should I just buckle down and ignore it, or is it okay to keep eating as long as I go back to more veg, and maybe a little more protein with it?

I know we're supposed to eat our fill and not deal with the idiotic diets that leave you hungry all the time, but I also know I have a rather massive psychological problem with eating when I don't need to, and since this is only day three I'm still trying to figure out how to separate real hunger from "you should be eating right now" addiction.

Any advice would be appreciated. :)

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I think I read that it takes a few days/weeks to learn the difference between hunger and cravings. Your body could be very confused from the late breakfast and skipped lunch and is probably confused from the whole program, as well.

I wanted to mention, though, that the steamed fish and broccoli test could help you. If all you had in your kitchen right now was steamed fish and broccoli, would you be hungry enough to eat it? Your body and mind may come to a better answer to that question in the coming days and weeks, but it's all I've got for now.

If you decide that you are hungry...stick with the meal template and have protein, fat, and veggies. Try to save fruits for meals. Sticking as close to three as possible or making your fourth a mini-meal (with higher sugar content only at main meals) should make the transition easier.

It sounds as though you are doing awesome. And, telling us about a craving could very well send it packing.

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Yes well done. Many of us have figured out (including Tom the mod) that if we dont eat enough in the morning, it doesnt matter how much we eat later we are hungry the rest of the day/night. If this is the case then I guess the best fix that day is to stop after you have had that extra proper meal (not a few small snack meals) a few hours before bed and go to bed a bit hungry if need be knowing you can and should have a big breakfast the next day.... this is just a suggestion as requested, only you can figure out if that works for you. I must say when I have fallen into the trap of having berries and coconut or nuts when I have been hungry it never satisfies the hunger (unless I just had a slight craving for something sweet), but carrot sticks, olives, eggs, tuna, salad or any leftovers works enough to get me to be able to sleep on any residual hunger

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I think it's a lesson to EAT LUNCH ;) Even if you don't really feel like it, it's a good idea to just stick to the 3 meals a day template, especially in the first couple of weeks. Your body's adapting to a lot of changes and you may have to just override the signals it's sending you sometimes.

So eat something for lunch, even if you're not really hungry and you'll get into a natural rhythm over the next couple of weeks :)

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I feel like a broken record on this one but the thing that helped me was upping my fat at lunch. So I'd have three servings usually in the form of 2 Tbs of oil for a salad dressing and one additional fat (1/2 an avocado or serving of nuts).

I also eat two types of vegetables at every meal and one of the has always been roasted in oil. Minimal amount is 2 cups and my lunch salad is probably closer to six.

I had your exact issue before I did this and I was actually scared that being hungry would trigger binge eating, but I have to say, extra fat was the answer for me.

I like the bedtime snack idea for you.....

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I can rarely make it on two meals per day. And oddly enough, I have found I can eat my first meal at noon and want to eat another full meal as little as two hours later. I figure that is okay and I eat. Then I can have a third meal around 7 PM and I'm good for the day. As Juzbo mentioned, I find I need three meals per day, that two big meals don't make up for eating three times for me. And, as others have already said, berries and coconut cream don't really make up for missing a meal. Eating another real meal is the answer to feeling hungry.

Personally, if I am going to bed at 9:30 and feel hungry at 9 PM, I eat. A can of sardines and/or a baked sweet potato garnished with macadamia nuts is a common late night meal for me. Going to bed on a newly filled stomach tends to mean I will wake up after about 4 hours and have to get back to sleep, but I find it difficult to fall asleep while hungry.

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Any idea where you are in your cycle? If you're near the end of it, that bottomless poor feeling its normal and you may need to up your carbs to accommodate the needs of your body during that time. If not, what they said above!

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I tried the intermittent fasting thing, and simply could not eat enough food at one sitting. Also, tend to panic if I think, well, only two meals so better make them good ones. I don't know what the health/longevity benefits are, but they don't seem to be enough for me to want to do that.

Maybe also that beginning fear (which I've had) of fat itself. Fat three times a day! Impossible to believe that will get you losing, feeling better, etc. But on this Day 21, I am fairly certain I've lost some weight, but by far more important is that my body composition is changing pretty radically, and hair, nails, face shinier and brighter.

I think the short answer is, feed what feels like hunger with real food, deal with cravings by talking back to them and substituting other activities, and wait for that to pass. Very likely you'll get into three meals a day soon and without much trouble at all. And in the process, the diet mentality will start to feel like a bad dream you had once a long time ago.

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