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Am I Really Hungry?

Updated: Mar 21, 2020


Food—it’s everywhere. That’s right, and it should be. We would not survive without it. Dieting is never easy for anyone because of the essential connection we have with food. I always liked to think of dieting this way: A person who is trying to quit smoking, although it might be extremely difficult, does not need to smoke even a little bit to sustain life. When changing the foods one eats and the amounts, it is still very much needed to continue living! I believe that makes it harder to diet than to quit smoking.

I have never smoked, so I never had to face the challenge to stop. However, throughout the years I would compare those two issues and it would make me very angry. I dealt with a lot of anger because of the difficulty I had to become slimmer. I was the chubby little girl in 1st grade. You can see how chubby I was in all of my school pictures. So not only was I eating a lot, and some of the wrong foods for my body type, but also I was never athletic and didn’t exercise much. I was always the one in gym class who couldn’t run fast or jump up onto the rings attached to the ropes to climb them. I couldn’t do it at all, and it was embarrassing, but mostly made me angry.

Anger is something we might encounter as an emotional issue that interferes with our eating. We could be angry over anything and sometimes even not know it. Then the magic comfort and “justification” for our anger might be ordering a pizza!

Consider which emotions plague you around eating and how you might put your Plan B into action by addressing question number one from my previous article.

1. Ask yourself: “Am I really hungry?”

Sometimes we are really hungry. True hunger is activated in our bodies by pain in the stomach, not growling, like we always thought. Also, it can cause a tightening of the throat, dry mouth, and dizziness. Oftentimes, our bodies might just be communicating with us that we need certain nutrients such as protein, carbs, (yes, carbs!), or a particular type of vitamin or mineral. So stop and ask yourself this question next time you want to buy an ice cream cone at the McDonald’s drive-through on your way home from work (something I would do) because you had a bad meeting experience on the job and became angry at your boss.

2. What should be your Plan B?

Examples: put in one of your favorite CDs in the car for your drive home and sing like crazy; sip on water and take some deep breaths, and pray or reflect on any and all positive aspects of your job and be grateful. Or, when you get home, hug your spouse and/or kids; tell a joke, tickle them, and all laugh together. Maybe, decide to go for a run after you get home. Realize how precious your life is to you outside of “the job.” And that means taking care of you by always having a Plan B instead of reacting with foods and extra calories you really don’t need.

Bonnie Crutcher is board certified by the American Association of Drugless Practitioners as a holistic health coach. Bonnie has created the Smart&Healthy Families Challenge to help families improve their eating and lifestyle habits and a weekly Women’s Healthy Weight Loss Class.

Disclaimer: The content of this blog is not intended to be medical advice. Always seek the advice of your medical doctor before engaging in any diet program or exercise routine.

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