Are you having a hard time sticking to your diet? Do you find yourself feeling hungry two hours after a healthy meal? If so, you might be placing too much focus on how much you eat and not enough on the kinds of foods you eat.
Everyone knows that many diets require you to eat less. But if youâ€™re cutting back on high-carb foods and not replacing them with other foods, you could find yourself craving a snack a few hours later. In the end, itâ€™s tough to lose weight when youâ€™re feeling hungry all the time. Instead of living with a growling stomach, try these five tricks to eat less and still feel full:
Drink (and Eat) More Water
Every diet book will tell you to drink more water, preferably eight 8-oz glasses a day. But not all water is created equal. While the water you drink only turns off your thirst signals, eating foods rich in water controls the hunger signals as well. Broth-based soups, fruits like apples and watermelon, and vegetables like lettuce and broccoli all contain water. If you eat more of them, youâ€™ll feel fuller without ingesting more calories.
Eat Smaller Meals, But More of Them Do you skip breakfast and lunch so you can save all your calories for dinner? If so, youâ€™re killing your weight loss plan. Skipping meals not only increases hunger, but over time it may actually reduce your metabolism. If that happens, it will make it even harder to burn off the meals you eat. To keep your metabolism working all day and your appetite under control, eat 5-6 small meals throughout the day.
Editor’s note: Â The above paragraph is the ever-propagated myth of 6 small meals that’s based on zero science. Â read more…
Fill up on Protein
Anyone whoâ€™s earned enough military scholarships to pay for college has likely been through countless fitness routines. They didnâ€™t get their muscles by cutting back on proteins, and neither should you. Protein-rich foods like lean meats, eggs and lentils actually serve two purposes. They build lean muscle mass, as well as keep you fuller for longer. This combination makes it easier to avoid the types of late-night snacks that have felled so many dieters in the past.
Add Back the Fats
Fat-free and low-fat foods are a staple in most dietersâ€™ pantries because, as conventional wisdom says, fats lead to fat bodies. But for all their bad press, fatty foods fill you up more quickly than their fat-free counterparts. Whatâ€™s more, not all fats are bad. While spreads like butter and mayonnaise are best left out of your diet (or at least replaced with low-fat alternatives), a handful of walnuts or almonds between meals keeps you full without wrecking your diet.
Switch to Whole Grains
A certain candy bar promises to satisfy you when youâ€™re hungry. That may be true, but it does the trick with lots of fat, sugars and calories. You could get the same effect from a whole-grain treat like an oatmeal cookie. Wheat, oat and other whole grains have slower-acting carbohydrates, which even out blood sugar levels and keep hunger under control. So next time you want a sandwich, get it on whole wheat or multigrain bread.
You donâ€™t have to eat like a rabbit to lose weight! As long as you eat foods that keep you fuller for longer, your diet wonâ€™t feel like such a chore. Â
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