Almost any diet plan can “work” as long as it includes resistance training and an imbalance of calories consumed vs calories burned. But what if you are constantly hungry? A diet won’t work if you can’t stick to it. If you can control your cravings, you have a much better chance of getting the body you want! Here are 4 ways to do just that.
1. Eat Slowly
When you begin eating, it takes time for hormones that increase satiety to get to work. You won’t begin to feel full until you get further away from that first bite. If you eat slowly, you’ll have consumed less food by the time you are satisfied enough to put the fork down. A good rule of thumb is to take 15-20 minutes to finish a meal, but if that seems too lengthy to start with, simply eat your food slower than you currently do.
2. Fill Half of Your Plate with Veggies
Vegetables provide many of the essential vitamins and minerals we need for health, but they also have the benefit of providing very few calories. Fill at least half of your plate with vegetables. If you commit to polishing off those veggies, there’s a better chance you won’t feel the need to have a second helping of that pasta or other delicious carbohydrate source you had.
3. Choose Berries and Melons
Fruits have many of the same health benefits as vegetables, but they provide a lot more calories too. If you want the best bang-for-your-buck to get the nutrients and taste of fruit but for fewer calories, try berries and melons as your main fruit sources.
- Strawberries, blueberries, and cranberries have more fiber than most fruit (fiber keeps you fuller) and also have less calories per total volume than whole fruit pieces like apples, bananas, and oranges. For instance, 6 ounces of blueberries is a physically larger portion size than one medium sized banana, yet they have roughly the same calorie count.
- Melons such as watermelon, cantaloupe, and honeydew have fewer calories per ounce than most fruits. An ounce of melon contains fewer calories than an ounce of most other fruits.
4. Coffee or Tea for Dessert
You might follow all of these wonderful tips and still be hungry after you’ve had your three square meals. If you’re craving more food, but you’ve hit your target calories for that day and eating more vegetables isn’t appealing at the moment, quell your cravings with some coffee or tea. Add some sweetener or 1-2 tsp of sugar (only 20-40 calories) and you’ll have something sweet to end the night with.
Having a diet comprised mostly of whole, minimally processed foods is the best route for health and fitness success. Using simple strategies like these can make the process even easier. Hunger is a prominent hurdle to overcome for fitness success, and you’ll be better equipped if you have tools like these in your dietary arsenal.
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