Overeating is the enemy of weight loss, which is why instead of eating till the plate gets clean, many people are using satiety as a measure to put the fork down.
What is satiety? It is just a fancy word to describe the feeling of fullness and content that you get when your hunger is quenched. Ever wondered why just one bowl of oatmeal can make you feel absolutely full, while it takes 3-4 donuts to have the same effect? This is because different foods have different satiety capabilities. The easiest way to lose weight is to eat food elements that promotes satiety. In other words, if you can eat food that keeps you feeling full for a longer period of time, you will prevent instances of both overeating and craving something unhealthy.
Below, you will find 8 smart ways to beat those hunger pangs and actually feel satisfied at the end of every meal. Ready? Let’s go!
Spice up your food
The aroma and burst of flavor of spices stimulates the salivary glands and digestive system. When the food gets ingested, the spices initiates a long array of biochemical reactions that not only revs up metabolism, but also sends signals to the center of the brain that controls satiety. Using spices to saute your vegetables or drizzling hot oil or sriracha on top of your bland omelet will make your food feel more gratifying. In one study, adding just half a tsp to the bowl of tomato soup of 25 diners, made them eat 60 calories less, and it caused the body to burn an extra 10 calories just by itself.
Eat an apple everyday
Research shows that eating a whole apple prior to lunch can reduce your caloric intake by as much as 15%. Apple is high in fiber, and also the act of eating an apple stimulates a variety of your senses. The crunch of the apple, the variety of flavors (sweetness and sour), and the extra time and effort required to chew an apple forces you to eat it mindfully According to the study, apple sauce or juice did not have the same effect.
Know what satiety feels like
Most of us don’t actually know what satiation or being full feels like. We look for external cues to stop eating. This could scooping that last piece from your plate, or hitting a certain time. But instead of asking your plate if you’re full or not, listen to your body. Also, note that it takes 20 minutes for your stomach to send the satiety signal to the brain. Your small intestine releases a hormone known as Cholecystokinin which signals to the brain that the body is receiving nutrients. Another hormone, Leptin, notifies the brain about its long term nutrient needs and the overall satiety level based on how much nutrient is being stored by the body. These hormones however do not function as efficiently, when the food is eaten too fast. So, instead of chomping down food, eat it slow and savor each bite. After 15-20 minutes if you still feel hungry, continue eating.
Eliminate artificial sweeteners
Zero calorie sugar substitutes actually does more harm than good. Studies have shown a strong link between individuals who are obese and their use of non caloric artificial sweetners like aspartame in Diet Coke. Why? Well, when your body senses food, it expects calories. When it doesn’t get them, it makes you crave even more food. Not just that, artificial sweeteners can be 7000 times sweeter than natural sugars, making your taste buds desensitized to zero calorie sweetners. So if you are really craving that cookie, eat a small piece of the real deal. Don’t substitute it with its faux, and often times more harmful version.
Load up on unsaturated fats
These are the healthy fats found in avocado, nuts and vegetable oils. These fat makes the whole digestion process slower, so you can go much longer without feeling hungry. Foods that are high in saturated fat, like beef and fat, have been shown to trigger leptin and insulin resistance, which are two hormones that quashes our feeling of hunger once the necessary level of energy intake is met. So steer clear of foods that are high in saturated fats.
Add Chia seeds
In one research study, the group that ate muffins with chia seeds felt more fuller than the group that ate a regular muffin. This is because the absorption and metabolism process of chia seeds take much longer. So it keeps your level of insulin constant, preventing sudden blood sugar spikes and drops.
Instead of eating a huge bowl of pasta, add a little more variety to the plate by adding stir fry vegetables, a piece of lean meat and a little pasta on the side. By adding a wide array of low caloric elements, you trick your brain into thinking you are eating a bigger meal which will promote the feeling of satiation.
Load up on Vitamin D
Vitamin D deficiency lowers the secretion of leptin, which is a hormone that sends a signal to brain when the fat cells become full. This failure of notifying the brain that your caloric requirement for the day have been met, makes you more prone to overeating. Boost up your Vitamin D level with fish like salmon, supplements or best of all, directly from the sun.
Now it’s your turn! Do you have a secret trick to feeling full faster? Please share it below.