Why exactly do we eat?
Excerpt (edited) from Food for Thought: I Just Ate So Why Am I Still Hungry?
Many people never allow themselves to feel hungry or go into a panic if they believe they will not be able to get some food when they need it. (Some medical conditions will disqualify this statement. Conditions such as diabetes and hypoglycemia can make us hungry, even shaky because of blood sugar drops. This is the nature of the disease). Feelings of hunger can bring up other types of hunger and longings that we are afraid to feel. It is easy to think you need food, when in reality, you want or need something else. Food is just the quick fix. The true need will always circle back around.
There are three types of hunger, knowing what kind you are feeling can help you unlock your understanding of why you are hungry:
- The body is low on fuel and needs re-fueling just like a car that is nearly out of gas. Usually easy to identify.
- Your body will give you signals — a growl in the stomach area, maybe some weakness or a little light headedness.
How does physical hunger affect you?
- Has nothing to do with physical hunger. You just like the way something tastes and you eat it because you like it.
- This can start out as physical hunger and once you are full it can turn into taste hunger, it tastes delicious! Just one more bite...
Do you have a problem with taste hunger? How do you think you can deal with it?
- This is eating when you are not hungry and you may not even particularly enjoy the way food tastes.
- You may be eating to avoid something you are feeling.
- There is often a sense of urgency associated with emotional hunger; this differentiates it from taste hunger.
Each time you eat, ask yourself these questions:
- What type of hunger is driving my eating right now?
- What type of hunger usually drives your eating?
If you are not physically hungry, you may want to reconsider why you are eating.
- Do you allow yourself to feel hungry, if not, why?
- Ask yourself, "What does the feeling of being hungry remind me of?" What is the worst thing that could happen if I just allowed myself to feel it for a little while?
HINT: Nothing bad will happen. You may just develop an awareness about something that could be key in helping you understand your relationship with food and what you are using it to do.
What does hunger feel like to you? Where in your body do you feel it?
- It is helpful to remember that there is usually a purpose behind overeating. Eating compulsively sometimes helps us to avoid the feelings that we believe will be too overwhelming for us.
- Food acts as a sedative and it works — but only temporarily.
- Ask yourself, "What may be the purpose behind my overeating?"
- "Is it possible that I have been numbing myself with food so that I do not have to face something or feel something?”
Remember: the something you may be trying to avoid does not have to be a big dark secret.
Want to learn more? You can get the FACTS not fads about successful weight loss with our book Food For Thought: I Just Ate So Why Am I Hungry? Available on ibooks kindle, nook and smashwords.
This article was originally published at http://amzn.to/1pPvIeM. Reprinted with permission from the author.