"> " /> ">
The SparkPeople Blog

7 Tips for Controlling Your Hungerís On and Off Switches

By: , SparkPeople Blogger
9/8/2009 9:55 AM   :  84 comments   :  19,196 Views

Simon & Schuster authors Michael F. Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet C. Oz, M.D. shared this guest blog post, which offers tips on keeping your hunger in check.

From You: On a Diet:

Duct tape over your mouth isnít how your body regulates food intake. Your body does it naturally, through hormones. Here are some quick tips for satisfying your appetite.

Get Over Sticker Shock. You should read food labels as actively as you read the stock ticker or the horoscopes. Donít eat foods that have any of the following listed as one of the first five ingredients:
  • Simple sugars
  • Enriched, bleached, or refined flour (this means itís stripped of its nutrients)
  • HFCS (high-fructose corn syrup -- a four-letter word).

Putting them into your body is like dunking your cell phone in a glass of water. Itíll cause your system to short out your hormones and send your body confusing messages about eating. Todayís yearly per capita consumption of sugar is 150 pounds, compared to 7.5 pounds consumed on average in the year 1700. Thatís twenty times as much! When typical slightly overweight people eat sugar, they on average store 5 percent as ready energy to use later, metabolize 60 percent, and store a whopping 35 percent as fat that can be converted to energy later. Any guess as to where 50 percent of the sugar we consume comes from? HFCS in fat-free foods like salad dressings and regular soft drinks.

Choose Unsaturated over Saturated. Meals high in saturated fat (thatís one of the aging fats) produce lower levels of leptin than low-fat meals with the exact same calories. That indicates you can increase your satiety and decrease hunger levels by avoiding saturated fats found in such sources as high-fat meats (like sausage), baked goods, and whole-milk dairy products.

Donít Confuse Thirst with Hunger. The reason some people eat is because their satiety centers are begging for attention. But sometimes, those appetite centers want things to quench thirst, not to fill the stomach. Thirst could be caused by hormones in the gut, or it could be a chemical response to eating; eating food increases the thickness of your blood, and your body senses the need to dilute it. A great way to counteract your hormonal reaction to food is to make sure that your response to thirst activation doesnít contain unnecessary, empty calories -- like the ones in soft drinks or alcohol. Your thirst center doesnít care whether itís getting zero-calorie water or a mega-calorie frap. YOU-reka! When you feel hungry, drink a glass or two of water first, to see if thatís really what your body wants.

Avoid the Alcohol Binge. For weight loss, avoid drinking excessive alcohol -- not solely because of its own calories, but also because of the calories it inspires you to consume later. Alcohol lowers your inhibition, so you end up feeling like you can eat anything and everything you see. Limiting yourself to one alcoholic drink a day has a protective effect on your arteries but could still cost you pounds, since it inhibits leptin.

Watch Your Carbs. Eating a super-high-carb diet increases NPY, which makes you hungry, so you should ensure that less than 50 percent of your diet comes from carbohydrates. Make sure that most of your carbs are complex, such as whole grains and vegetables.

Stay -- Va-Va-Va-Voom -- Satisfied. In any waist management plan, you can stay satisfied. Not in the form of a dripping double cheeseburger but in the form of safe, healthy, monogamous sex. Sex and hunger are regulated through the brain chemical NPY. Some have observed that having healthy sex could help you control your food intake; by satisfying one appetite center, you seem to satisfy the other.

Manage Your Hormonal Surges. There will be times when you canít always control your hormone levels; when ghrelin outslugs your leptin, and you feel hungrier than a lion on a bug-only diet. Develop a list of emergency foods to satisfy you when cravings get the best of you -- things like V8 juice, a handful of nuts, pieces of fruit, cut-up vegetables, or even a little guacamole.

Learn more ways you can control your hunger and lose weight with You: On A Diet by Michael F. Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet C. Oz, M.D.


About the authors
Michael F. Roizen, M.D., is a New York Times bestselling author and cofounder and originator of the very popular RealAge.com website. He is professor and chair of the Division of Anesthesia, Critical Care Medicine, and Pain Management, and chief wellness officer of the Cleveland Clinic.

Mehmet C. Oz, M.D., is also a New York Times bestselling author and the health expert of The Oprah Winfrey Show. He is professor and vice-chairman of surgery at New York Presbyterian Columbia University and the medical director of the Integrated Medicine Center and the director of the Heart Institute. They are the coauthors of You: On A Diet: The Owner's Manual for Waist Management.

Buy the book "You: On a Diet"

Will you apply any of these tips to your life? Have you found success with any of these tips?


Click here to to redeem your SparkPoints
  You will earn 5 SparkPoints
 

NEXT ENTRY >   Poll: Do You Eat More When You're at Home or Away?

Great Stories from around the Web

Comments

  • 84
    Interesting tips - 11/19/2010   2:19:28 PM
  • AALASS
    83
    There is no easy fix for losing weight. Bottom line, eat less and exercise more.

    http://www.eu-cigs.com

    http://www.eu-cigs.net - 1/21/2010   5:04:34 AM
  • REILLYGIRRRL
    82
    This book changed my life! - 12/13/2009   8:20:15 AM
  • ZBETASMOM
    81
    I have the book but U haven't read it yet, I am going to pull it out today and get started on it - 12/13/2009   6:47:43 AM
  • 80
    This book changed my life! Every so often I re-read so that I remind myself of what I'm supposed to do!
    If you haven't read it yet, do so, it'll really open up your eyes to what you're putting into your body! - 12/11/2009   12:27:52 PM
  • PKLOSH
    79
    Under 50% carbs is unrealistic -- that leaves high levels of protein and fat in the diet, both of which can be hard on the system. Also, more carbs and slightly more protein (slightly more than 15-20%) are needed for strenuous exercise. The key is that ALL carbs should be complex carbs -- ditch the white flour, sugar, and other refined products, and you'll find that your hunger pangs disappear. Mine did. - 11/3/2009   7:17:52 AM
  • 78
    Great reminders and good tips. These docs are great, inspiring, and really seem to care about the health of us all. This is not fad stuff, it is scientific and factual. I love their books. - 10/13/2009   3:32:10 PM
  • VICKIE53072
    77
    I love anything by these 2 guys. - 9/24/2009   9:36:18 PM
  • K_RENEE
    76
    I've found that sometimes if I have a glass of water before I eat, that sometimes I wasn't hungry to begin with, just thirsty! Go figure! - 9/20/2009   7:29:03 PM
  • 75
    I try to live this way most days. I'm a HUGE label reader and it helps to keep me on the straight and narrow. - 9/12/2009   8:29:47 PM
  • 74
    I really enjoyed this book. Read it a few months ago. Thanks for the reminder tips.
    Love the Spark! - 9/11/2009   3:59:57 PM
  • MIZ_SNOOPY
    73
    I bought this book a couple years ago when it first came out and I LOVED it! Everyone trying to manage their weight should read this book! - 9/11/2009   2:18:44 PM
  • 72
    Great tips to help keep all of us on track! - 9/11/2009   12:42:40 AM
  • 71
    My big focus has been trying to drink more water, I am really bad about it. So I was thinking of when I am starving and heading to the grocery store, or waiting in a line or restaurant to order to first have water, then decide what I want to eat. As opposed to buying everything off the shelf and ordering the fattiest, juciest thing on the menu because I justify it because I am so starving. - 9/10/2009   6:28:48 PM
  • 70
    How much is this book and is it in all stores? Can i get it at walmart? Yeah ieat also bc i LOVE food... I have natural cravings bc i just LOVE food lol. - 9/10/2009   11:43:29 AM
  • 69
    Neuropeptide Y (NPY) is a 36 amino acid peptide neurotransmitter found in the brain and autonomic nervous system.

    NPY has been associated with a number of physiologic processes in the brain, including the regulation of energy balance, memory and learning, and epilepsy.[1] The main effect is increased food intake and decreased physical activity. NPY is secreted by the hypothalamus, and in addition to increasing food intake, it increases the proportion of energy stored as fat and blocks nociceptive signals to the brain.[2] NPY also augments the vasoconstrictor effects of noradrenergic neurons.

    Had to look this up. Anything that has to do with metabolism is interesting. As soon as I can remember all the principles, maybe I can get mine moving.

    Thanks for this info! - 9/10/2009   11:05:53 AM
  • 68
    Love Dr. Oz. Real life equals real results. I like the idea of getting back to natural. No quick fixes. His approach is honest; no overnight fixes. Everything in moderation a good approach to life. I don't follow it to the letter but I strive toward it everyday. - 9/10/2009   9:26:44 AM
  • 67
    This is DEFINITELY true.

    Whenever I give up sugar and refined flour/simple carbohydrate products, my false "hunger" cravings simply DISAPPEAR. (after a week or so)

    And I can look at my food tracker and see that my average daily calorie intake DROPS by about 300 or 400 calories, and yet I feel fuller and more satisfied! - 9/10/2009   8:44:44 AM
  • 66
    I love this book! It is easy to read and makes complex information easy to understand. I recently gave away a bunch of diet books, but I could not part with this one. I consider it a reference book that I'll probably keep forever.

    Not too long ago, I bought their "You: Being Beautiful" book. I haven't started reading it yet, but I am confident I will love it every bit as much.

    BTW, "You: On a Diet" has absolutely the most yummy pizza recipe. It's tasty, satisfying, good for you and....I really actually get filled up to the brim on 2 slices. There are other good recipes in there, too, but the pizza is my favorite. - 9/10/2009   7:49:41 AM
  • 65
    I have started the book several times but never finished it. I think it's time to start over andread it all this time! - 9/10/2009   12:52:50 AM
  • SALTIIE
    64
    I have a question: It mentions keeping carb intake below 50% but Sparkpeople set daily goal to be about 55%? - 9/10/2009   12:00:57 AM
  • 63
    Wow - Maybe reading this book will set me straight and I will be able to visualize my goals more clearly! I wonder if it would be in my hometown library? - 9/9/2009   4:56:56 PM
  • 62
    One suggestion - please define what NPY is. Not all of us get to watch TV during the day to see how Dr Oz or whoever defines this. - 9/9/2009   4:07:31 PM
  • ULISSAU
    61
    All the tips are good. Drinking is for me one of the most helpful tips, but sometimes I don't recall in time. Always have vegetables at hand when I am home to quench hunger. Starting to continue on hobbies also helps and distracts, such as painting or exercising. - 9/9/2009   3:37:06 PM
  • SUSAN20855
    60
    Every little tool is a help in one way or another. This is a good book! - 9/9/2009   3:30:02 PM
  • 59
    Dr.OZ reiterates these basic principals nutritionally....one of the clearest and no nonsense books I read a good 18 years before this ever was written and the basis of OA's approach to eating sensibly, "The 35-plus Woman's Diet" presented the metabolic processes behind the summarizations listed in this article. Indeed, all subsequent books that I read, like Atkins and South Beach, not to mention the basic tenets of nutrition of body builders, all use these principals. The important thing has been to find recipes that meet them and also please the palette in a way that encourages not dieting but a real lifestyle change and to realize that the first "phases" or "stages" of each of these "diets" , wherein one drops weight far faster than one ordienarily does when truly changing body comp,is as much for the psychological boost as it is for the physical re-adjustment needed for the long haul of Lifestyle change.

    Kat - 9/9/2009   3:14:44 PM
  • 58
    Dr.OZ reiterates these basic principals nutritionally....one of the clearest and no nonsense books I read a good 18 years before this ever was written and the basis of OA's approach to eating sensibly, "The 35-plus Woman's Diet" presented the metabolic processes behind the summarizations listed in this article. Indeed, all subsequent books that I read, like Atkins and South Beach, not to mention the basic tenets of nutrition of body builders, all use these principals. The important thing has been to find recipes that meet them and also please the palette in a way that encourages not dieting but a real lifestyle change and to realize that the first "phases" or "stages" of each of these "diets" , wherein one drops weight far faster than one ordienarily does when truly changing body comp,is as much for the psychological boost as it is for the physical re-adjustment needed for the long haul of Lifestyle change.

    Kat - 9/9/2009   3:14:32 PM
  • 57
    Dr.OZ reiterates these basic principals nutritionally....one of the clearest and no nonsense books I read a good 18 years before this ever was written and the basis of OA's approach to eating sensibly, "The 35-plus Woman's Diet" presented the metabolic processes behind the summarizations listed in this article. Indeed, all subsequent books and such like Atkins and South Beach, not to mention the barebones of body builders, all are aware of and use these principals. The important thing has been to find recipes that meet them and also please the palette in a way that encourages not dieting but a real lifestyle change and to realize that the first "phases" or "stages" of each of these "diets" is as much for the psychological boost as it is for the physical re-adjustment needed for the long haul of Lifestyle change.
    HUGS
    Kat - 9/9/2009   3:04:27 PM
  • 56
    Dr.OZ reiterates these basic principals nutritionally....one of the clearest and no nonsense books I read a good 18 years before this ever was written and the basis of OA's approach to eating sensibly, "The 35-plus Woman's Diet" presented the metabolic processes behind the summarizations listed in this article. Indeed, all subsequent books and such like Atkins and South Beach, not to mention the barebones of body builders, all are aware of and use these principals. The important thing has been to find recipes that meet them and also please the palette in a way that encourages not dieting but a real lifestyle change and to realize that the first "phases" or "stages" of each of these "diets" is as much for the psychological boost as it is for the physical re-adjustment needed for the long haul of Lifestyle change.
    HUGS
    Kat - 9/9/2009   3:04:18 PM
  • 55
    This is a very good article (so is the book and Dr. Oz on Oprah). As I have learned all of these things and incorporated them into my life and diet they have made for very positive changes in my health. As things have improved I have also gotten very angry at all the companies and marketers that are selling us bad food for their own profit. All of the lies they are selling and that are even on the labels and we buy it all and generally the population learns to love it and then is sicker than other nations. This is part of the reason that our nation is sick and that we are in a health care crisis: ignorance and being sold it for reason of profit to someone else.

    I saw a film last nigh Money Driven Medicine. They are right in the film that is a problem of our health care system. It is no longer care based or what benefitís the patient the most.

    As I have learned the things in the You article, I became very angry at my Dr.s for not pointing out this information. They are not proactive with this information. The first thing they look at is what medicines can I prescribe or what procedure should be done to try to fix a crisis. They have not been addressing care and avoiding the crisis that was potentially coming. Once we are in crisis mode it is more expensive and complicated to fix things.

    They could have been more proactive about having me come in for more appointments and discussing these things even one at a time as well as checking on other general progress. I bet my insurance would have paid for those visits. That is a change in business that it seems like they could do. It takes time to incorporate all of these changes. You could try to do it all at once, but in real life it does not really work that way does it?

    As I ate healthier and tried to get more fiber in my diet I learned that I was Gluten intolerant. So as some people adopt these healthier hints some other things may go hay wire. That is also a very good reason to take them a step at a time. One change may cause some sort of other problems to pop up and to look at that which may be a very good thing to have happen.

    On my health journey I have discovered diet things that are not addressed at all by all of my Dr.s, unless I come in with specific questions. Even then I may get a stupid comment like I donĎt look at that at all. A current cure is for me to read everything I can about Gluten and avoid it. It turns out that I have actually been avoiding a lot of gluten things that gave me big problems. For a long time I donít lick the adhesive on stamps or envelopes. It made me really sick. It turns out there is gluten in doing this and if you are gluten intolerant it is going to make you sick.

    I hope a lot of people learn from this article, the You book, Dr. Oz and educational things like this, incorporate it in their lives and become happier and healthier too.
    - 9/9/2009   1:39:32 PM
  • 54
    Have the book and read it several times. Love it!!! - 9/9/2009   1:29:15 PM
  • PHYLLISPETERS
    53
    What happened to everything in moderation? I totally disagree with never eating anything that contains simple sugar, white flour or hfcs. We are healthy eaters in our home and most of our food is homemade. When I make chocolate cake it contains white sugar and white flour but it is a treat, never the main course. Also, I do not believe that diet can control hormones. If you have a relatively healthy diet and your hormones are actually not working properly go to your doctor because changing your diet probably won't work. - 9/9/2009   12:20:41 PM
  • 52
    Hmmmm interesting article about being satisfied physically and your appetite......"give me a kiss and pass the potatos" - 9/9/2009   12:18:27 PM
  • 51
    Dr. Rosen had this book on his PBS Special and it was well worth watching. DR. OZ started his own TV Show now and I do like him. He sure doesn't believe in being fat! - 9/9/2009   12:05:21 PM
  • 50
    WOW I love Dr OZ!! He is one great Dr. I follow lots of his rules to staying healthy.I do eat complex carbs & avoid alcohol too. Get the exercise & more.. Thanks!! - 9/9/2009   10:58:59 AM
  • 49
    Great tips. Now I want to go out and buy the book. Thanks for the news that Dr. Oz is starting a new show on Monday, September 14th. I'm going to TiVo it! Have only seen him on Oprah once or twice, but liked what I heard. - 9/9/2009   10:51:38 AM
  • 48
    Hard to say what to think. The comment about keeping your carbs to less than 50% of your food intake conflicts with SP's recommended daily intake of 55%, albeit only a 10% variation. Also, the recent blog regarding HFCS seems to indicate that it's not as bad as this writer says. Other than that, I guess it's all sound advice. - 9/9/2009   10:43:21 AM
  • 47
    I am a fan of Dr. Oz - I think I'll check out his book! - 9/9/2009   10:41:57 AM
  • 46
    The water tip is a great tool to combat hunger. I also avoid refined carbs as much as possible as that's a big trigger for me. Even a couple of saltines can send me down the wrong path. Alcohol at parties is one I need to work on. - 9/9/2009   10:20:42 AM
  • 45
    I bought this book a couple of years ago and I have read it several times. I learned more about my digestion and body than I ever learned before. I think it is a great idea for everyone to be informed as to how their body works. It will help you stick to your guns when you really know why you are or aren't doing something or eating something. There are some cheesy illustrations and comments, but I don't think I've ever had an informative book that was so easy to read. I highly recommend this book. - 9/9/2009   9:14:22 AM
  • 44
    I was surprised, like others above me, about the correlation between being satisfied sexually and being satisfied hormonally with food. Very interesting! - 9/9/2009   9:08:37 AM
  • 43
    I love Dr. Oz and Dr Roizen's books! They are well written and easy to understand. I make it a point to watch Oprah or The Doctors when I know Dr. Oz will be on. He not only "talks it" he "walks it." There is also a great website www.realage.com that offers great tips and information generated by the docs. - 9/9/2009   9:07:14 AM
  • 42
    Great tips, all of them! But I ESPECIALLY and HEARTILY agree with:

    Donít eat foods that have any of the following listed as one of the first five ingredients:
    Simple sugars
    Enriched, bleached, or refined flour (this means itís stripped of its nutrients)
    HFCS (high-fructose corn syrup -- a four-letter word).

    and

    Watch Your Carbs (which by definition includes Alcohol!)

    Don, Co-Leader of All Health Professionals, Binghamton Area Losers and Laid Off But Staying Strong SparkTeams
    - 9/9/2009   8:49:52 AM
  • 41
    Great article! It does seem to repeat what we all learn here, but the more you see it the more you remember it, so keep up with the great information reminders! :) I full agree with Aggie56! When I first started SP, I struggled down the salty and sugary snacks aisles at the grocery store, fighting with myself not to buy them. It only took 2 or 3 weeks for me to not want them and my fiance to not even ask why I didn't buy them, since he wasn't craving them either! Neither one of us even go down those aisles anymore because we just feel like it's a waste of time. I also wanted to say about #6...Everyone is different. When I have my monogamous sex, I'm not thinking about eating, but as soon as we are done....Look out kitchen here I come. I feel more starving than if I wouldn't eat for an entire day. Since starting SP I try drinking water right afterward. After 2 cups of water, I feel much better, but still need a meal. - 9/9/2009   8:32:30 AM
  • HAPPYJOLO
    40
    I joined SP just the other day and I bought this book a couple of months ago and highly recommend it. It is very easy to read and I like the educational and informative style . There are many sensible and easy ideas that can be put into practise like "walk everyday no matter what". It's theme is about lifestyle change - eating habits and changing the bad eating habits, being aware of what you choose to eat and how much you choose to eat. Be aware of making good food choices. And moving more with exercise. In fact the book admits that traditional diets don't work. However, the book does also emphasise that any changes you make are better than not making any and that there will be days when you do eat the junk food or over eat (like yesterday) - just acknowledge it (no body is perfect after all), don't beat yourself up over it and get back on the better food choices horse! - 9/9/2009   8:04:24 AM
  • HAPPYJOLO
    39
    I joined SP just the other day and I bought this book a couple of months ago and highly recommend it. It is very easy to read and I like the educational and informative style . There are many sensible and easy ideas that can be put into practise like "walk everyday no matter what". It's theme is about lifestyle change - eating habits and changing the bad eating habits, being aware of what you choose to eat and how much you choose to eat. Be aware of making good food choices. And moving more with exercise. In fact the book admits that traditional diets don't work. However, the book does also emphasise that any changes you make are better than not making any and that there will be days when you do eat the junk food or over eat (like yesterday) - just acknowledge it (no body is perfect after all), don't beat yourself up over it and get back on the better food choices horse! - 9/9/2009   8:03:39 AM
  • 38
    My husband will be happy to up our frequencies. Plus, it will count as activity. ;) - 9/9/2009   8:01:55 AM
  • 37
    Have the book and reread it several times. It's a great eye opener and reminder. If you ever get to go to hear Dr. Roizen, please help yourself and do so. He is so terrific and so outreaching. Cleveland Clinic has a winner in him. - 9/9/2009   7:36:49 AM
  • 36
    Heh heh heh - some interesting new tips.... But I'm not likely to buy the book, since the tips mostly seem like common sense justified! Great post, though - thanks for the guest bloggers, who have been excellent thus far. - 9/9/2009   5:56:26 AM
  • 35
    So why aren't all single people WHO DON'T HAVE SEX fat? - 9/9/2009   5:45:32 AM

Please Log In To Leave A Comment:    Log in now ›


Join SparkPeople.com

Sign up for a FREE SparkPeople account