Healthstyle Blog

An Eating Tool to Help You Know When You Are Hungry or Full

Are you in tune with your body?

Do you know when you are hungry?

Do you know when you are full?

Do you know when to stop eating?

Do you recognize any of these signals?

I use a tool called the hunger scale that has been very successful with my clients.

The hunger scale is used for physical hunger as the name suggests.

It starts from -10, which is starving, to +10, which is stuffed and uncomfortable. 0 is neutral which means you are not hungry neither are you full.

This can be compared to a fuel gauge. You don’t want it on empty because you will have to fill it up which in your case would mean eating a lot of food because you are extremely hungry.

The sensation of hunger is a biological and physical reaction within your body. You will need to spend a lot of time getting to know what this really feels like. It’s a connection to your body that tells you on a physical level where you are on the hunger scale. Physical hunger symptoms can come in the form of a headache, stomach growls or even nausea. Physical hunger starts in the body and travels to the brain.

An emotional feeling of hunger can be very similar, but it’s harder to locate within the body. Most times, emotional hunger is felt more in the chest or in the heart. It’s not accompanied by a sense of lightness, but more of a heavy emptiness. The emotional feeling of hunger starts in the brain and travels to the body.

The goal is to eat at -2 and stop at +2. You should feel light after eating. I tell my clients if you can do a few jumping jacks comfortably after eating you are at +2. That won’t apply to everyone. However the objective is to feel satisfied in a comfortable light way.

When you follow the hunger scale, you will be eating more often, more likely about 5 – 6 times per day. That means you will need to plan ahead and have food available at all times.

Try not to get below -2. We all know what happens to us when we get extremely hungry. Yes we eat whatever is in sight. It doesn’t matter who you are. When you are hungry you want food and a hungry person most times is not very picky and will eat whatever they can find.

For some of my clients that require guidelines I recommend the following but remember that even with these guidelines it is still important to listen to the infinite wisdom provided by your own body.

  • Eat six small meals a day about every three hours.
  • Eat a serving of carbohydrates and a serving of protein at each meal.
  • Make sure at least 3 of the meals have a serving of vegetables. A serving size is the size of your fist.
  • Drink at least 64 ounces of bottle a day. Drinking 8 oz. bottle of water every two –three hours is a good way to get in 64ounces.

This is how I eat and I have found that it delivers a steady stream of energy throughout the day, keeps me within the range on the hunger scale, and is in line with my body’s wisdom.

Try this out. How many times a day do you normally eat? Do you find that you are hungry when you eat or is it more out of habit?

If you would like further information on the hunger scale and how it can help you lose weight or adopt a healthier lifestyle sign up for a FREE mini coaching session. Click here to sign up.


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