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Tuesday, September 26, 2023

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Why I’m always hungry: 6 reasons to feel hungry all the time

Have you ever had a day where you felt hungry all the time? The feeling of never being full or the feeling of hunger that does not go away can happen to all of us and everything is normal. However, no matter what you do, hunger pangs may not stop. When you feel hungry, you may feel a headache, irritable, or unable to concentrate.

The next time you feel an inexplicable hunger, one of them might be to blame…

1. Not getting enough protein

It is important to consume enough protein for appetite control. Protein has hunger-reducing properties that can help you automatically consume fewer calories throughout the day. It does this by increasing the production of satiety-stimulating hormones and decreasing hunger-stimulating hormone levels. Because of these effects, you can often feel hungry if you don’t consume enough protein.

Many different foods are high in protein, so getting enough protein from your diet is not difficult. Adding a source of protein to every meal can help prevent extreme hunger. Animal products such as red meat, poultry, fish and eggs contain high amounts of protein. It is also found in some dairy products, such as milk and yogurt, and in plant foods such as legumes, oil seeds, and whole grains.

2. Not getting enough sleep

Getting enough sleep is extremely important for your health. Sleep is required for your brain and immune system to function properly. Getting enough sleep lowers the risk of several chronic diseases, including heart disease and cancer. Getting enough sleep is a factor in controlling appetite, as it helps regulate ghrelin, the appetite-stimulating hormone. Lack of sleep causes higher ghrelin levels, so you may feel hungry when you are sleep deprived.

Getting enough sleep also helps ensure adequate amounts of leptin, a hormone that promotes a feeling of fullness. To keep your hunger levels under control, it is generally recommended to get at least eight hours of uninterrupted sleep each night.

3. Eating too many refined carbohydrates

Refined carbohydrates have been processed and stripped of their fiber, vitamins, and minerals. One of the most popular sources of refined carbohydrates is white flour, which is found in many grain-based foods such as bread and pasta. Foods such as soda and baked goods made with processed sugars are also considered refined carbohydrates.

Refined carbohydrates do not contain fiber, so your body digests them very quickly. This is the main reason why you often become hungry if you eat too many refined carbohydrates, as they do not provide a significant feeling of fullness.

Also, eating refined carbohydrates can cause rapid spikes in your blood sugar. This causes levels of insulin, a hormone responsible for transporting your sugars into cells, to rise. When high blood sugar releases too much insulin at once in response, it can cause a sudden drop in blood sugar levels. Low blood sugar levels signal your body that it needs more food, which is another reason why you often feel hungry if refined carbohydrates are a regular part of your diet.

To reduce your intake of refined carbohydrates, replace them with whole foods such as healthier vegetables, fruits, legumes and whole grains. These foods are also high in carbohydrates but rich in fiber, which helps in keeping hunger under control.

4. Diet low in fat

Fat plays a key role in keeping you full. This is partly due to the slow gastrointestinal transit time, which means it takes longer for you to digest and stays in your stomach for a long time. Consuming fat can cause the release of various hormones that increase the feeling of satiety. For these reasons, you can often feel hungry if your diet is low in fat.

There are many healthy, high-fat foods you can add to your diet to increase your fat intake. Some types of fat, such as medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) and omega-3 fatty acids, can reduce appetite. The richest dietary source of MCT is coconut oil, while omega-3 fatty acids are found in fatty fish such as salmon, tuna, and mackerel. You can also get omega-3s from plant-based foods like walnuts and flaxseeds.

Some other healthy, high-fat food sources include avocados, olive oil, eggs, and full-fat yogurt.

5. Not drinking enough water

Adequate water intake is incredibly important to your overall health. Drinking enough water has several health benefits, including improving brain and heart health and improving exercise performance. Water keeps your skin and digestive system healthy.

Water has the potential to reduce appetite. Because of the role of water in feeling full, you may find that you often feel hungry if you don’t drink enough. The feeling of thirst can be confused with the feeling of hunger. If you are always hungry, it may be helpful to drink a glass or two of water just to find out if you are thirsty. To ensure you’re getting the right amount of water, only drink water when you’re thirsty. Eating water-rich foods, including fruits and vegetables, will also add to your water needs.

6. Lack of fiber

If your diet lacks fiber, you may feel hungry often. Eating lots of fiber is beneficial for keeping hunger under control. High-fiber foods slow the emptying rate of the stomach and take longer to digest than low-fiber foods. High fiber intake affects the release of appetite-reducing hormones and the production of short-chain fatty acids, which are known to have effects that increase the feeling of satiety.

It’s important to note that there are different types of fiber, and some are better than others at keeping you full and preventing hunger. Many different foods, such as oatmeal, flaxseed, sweet potatoes, oranges and Brussels sprouts, are excellent sources of soluble fiber. A high-fiber diet not only helps reduce hunger but also provides many benefits, such as reducing the risk of heart disease, diabetes and obesity.

To ensure you’re getting enough fiber, choose a diet rich in plant-based foods such as fruits, vegetables, oilseeds, legumes, and whole grains.

Dyt. Serkan Sıtkı Şahin

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