To Eat or Not to Eat? That is the Question


The little question we ask ourselves many times a day. To lose weight you need to know the answer!

1. Am I truly hungry?
This is a very important first question, because so many people eat for reasons other than hunger or they don’t know what true hunger feels like. Those who are naturally thin understand the concept of hunger well and it is one of their most important secrets for staying slim.

If you ask yourself the question “Am I truly hungry?” and the answer  is “Yes”, then enjoy eating! But if the answer is “I’m not sure”, this is a good time to inquire and pay attention to your body. If you are really hungry, your body will let you know in no uncertain terms as time progresses.  If you are not 100% sure you are hungry, ask yourself some of the following questions.

2. Where is the hunger coming from?
If the idea that you want to eat originates in your mind, then it may be a craving instead of hunger. If the thought of that Oreo sounds so good and you can’t get it out of your mind, then it’s probably a craving.  You may notice that there are emotions attached to that Oreo as well. When it’s a craving, you must have THAT particular food. 

If the feeling is coming from your mouth, then there’s a good chance that you are thirsty instead of hungry. Try a nice big glass of water and that may do just the trick. If a little while later you find that the feeling is coming from your stomach, then it’s time to eat.

3. What physical signals do I have?
Hunger begins with physical signals. Your body tells your mind that you are hungry. Remember that cravings are usually the reverse - your mind telling your body. Hunger signals usually come from your stomach, such as growling or pain. For some people, their signs could be headaches, lightheadedness or irritability. If you feel these physical signals clearly, then it’s time find something you love to eat and enjoy!

4. Is this hunger or just a habit?
Often what we think is hunger is really just a habit. “It’s my lunch break, so I’d better eat.” “I’m sitting on the couch watching TV, so I’ll grab a snack and enjoy.”  Next time you are looking at the clock or in routine situations and you find yourself going for the food without thinking, stop and pay attention to your body’s signals to make sure you are eating because you are truly hungry.

5. What do I really need?
Sometimes what we really need is actually not food at all. We get stressed or tired and we eat because we think the food we are craving will make us feel better. Eating can also be a means of escape. We get engrossed in munching and numb out situations or feelings that are too overwhelming for us at the moment.  The pleasure or escape that the food provides us, however, is only temporary and often we feel worse both emotionally and physically after the binge.

When you find yourself opening up one cupboard after another trying to find a magic bullet to make you feel better or you grab what you hope will be vacation in a snack bag, this would be a good time to ask yourself “What do I really need?” It might be that you need to discuss with a friend or family member about what is really bothering you. It may be that you need to cut back on some hours at work to have more balance in your life. Whatever the root problem is, food will not fix it or make it go away.

Eating when hungry puts you in the driver’s seat of your body. You can connect your mind and body in a ways that bring clarity to your reason for eating. You can change your habits and routines and see how wonderfully your body actually does communicate to you. And when you handle the emotions and stresses of everyday life in more empowering ways, you will find the peace and thinness that your mind and body have been wanting.

Joy Bufalini
Certified Body Breakthrough Coach

This article answers the important question of WHEN to eat. You also need to know HOW to eat, WHAT to eat and WHY to eat. These are all part of the secrets of the Naturally Thin – people that get and stay thin effortlessly. YOU can be one of them.

I’d love to schedule a Free Discovery Telecoaching Session with you to help you discover how to become Naturally Thin and feel good about your body! Contact me at or visit my profile and read my weight loss story at

This article was originally published at . Reprinted with permission from the author.