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10 Reasons You Eat When You're Not Actually Hungry

And What You Can Do About It!


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  • Most of these apply to me. My biggest issue is that I'm an "opportunistic eater" if I have the opportunity to eat, then I eat! - 9/6/2013 11:04:58 AM
  • Another point that was not made here is that your body sends out several different "hunger" signals, some of which aren't related to how full your stomach is. This is all regulated by hormones.

    If your cells are still hungry (this means you, Type 2 diabetics!) you will still feel hungry even if your stomach is stuffed. Insulin resistance is a major cause of unrequited hunger. - 9/6/2013 9:11:08 AM
  • LOSEME8890
    I have been with WW for years, it's a motto NOT to skip meals. I have taken all the junk food out of my house...but I can gain weight on fruit. I know it's natural sugar but I have a sweet tooth. I also know fruit is healthy but I can eat a bag of grapes,an apple and a banana. Then eat a meal. I try to buy only a few fruits a week, but if I don't eat fruit I pig out on something else.
    Sugar free puddings, nuts or just cereal - 9/6/2013 9:01:40 AM
    I fall into quite a few of these traps but I also have an oral fixation. I don't smoke or chew on toothpicks but I will keep a lollipop stick in my motuih long after the candy is gone.
    - 9/6/2013 7:57:56 AM
  • How about thirst? How about that you've been eating certain types of food that your body gets accustomed to? Diabetes makes people feel hungry.. I spent my whole life hearing about 'emotional eating" and thought I must be a mess. I have since learned that WHAT we eat can make a HUGE difference. MSG is a known trigger that makes people feel hungrier and overeat (for many reasons, including an addictive property). I do emotionally eat occasionally, but I have found that by abstaining from msg laden processed foods and overly sugary foods has really helped my appetite. Exhausting in today's world of all processed and convenience foods to stay away from MSG, but worth it! - 9/5/2013 5:16:19 PM
  • Wait, I thought the best way to lose weight was to eat at the same time every day. Granted, when 6 o'clock comes, I don't always feel hungry, but I do make sure to eat. "Eating" doesn't mean 5 courses. Sometimes it's a piece of fruit or a smoothie. Enough to fill me, not so much as to stuff me. The clock is sometimes my best friend when it comes to food. On busy days, I don't realize that I haven't eaten in 12 hours because I worked through lunch and I'm still working. Looking up and going, "Oh, it's mealtime. I guess I should be hungry." And then being told "No, don't eat just because it's time to" with this article... yeah, I think this should be 9, and let's drop the clock. Or mention eating smaller at meals if your aren't hungry. - 9/1/2013 10:24:25 AM
  • This article article is incredibly short-sighted, & is disturbing to someone familiar with eating disorders. Eating when you're not hungry is sometimes necessary. I have chronic hypoglycemia (not diabetes related) & if I only eat when I'm hungry, I could easily pass out from low blood sugar, and constant lows wreck one's metabolism. If I truly want to lose weight, I have to eat when I'm not hungry. - 8/21/2013 2:03:03 PM
  • Oh, I forgot! I eat slower and better while watching TV. Yup! I do not eat during commercials. I put all the flatware down. I eat slower during the actual program to last until the next commercial. - 7/22/2013 10:01:17 AM
  • Hi everyone: I have the emotional eating problem and the time of day problem. 2 PM and 6 or 7 PM are problem times for me. As for exercise, I cannot do floor exercises. Against DR's orders. - 7/22/2013 9:55:38 AM
  • Moomshine is correct that diabetics need to eat at certain times even if they aren't hungry. My hunger and my blood sugar level do not always coordinate and then I crash. - 7/14/2013 8:08:19 PM
  • I never used to crave carbs, but in the last year, I have craved sugary foods and carbs even when I am not hungry. I have yet to determine whether it is hormonal or something else, but I don't want to become a diabetic so I need to figure out the problem. I am 43 and thinking it is hormone issues possibly. If anyone else has had the same issues with extreme cravings in their 40's, please leave a response. Thank you. - 7/13/2013 8:57:30 PM
  • I need to link this page for the next time I'm upset about something. One thing worth mentioning, though, is that we diabetics need to eat every 3 - 4 hours, hungry or not. Theoretically, this should keep us from over-eating; but not so. We still can eat for all the above-mentioned wrong reasons. Thanks for the good Article. Since I've begun this program (5 months), I've had two emotional "episodes" - succumbed to one, but was able to quit without too much damage; the other, I toughed-out. Maybe next time, I'll have enough rational thought to come back to this article. 8-) - 7/13/2013 4:52:32 PM
    I've mostly ate out of boredom. I really have to watch myself that I don't go into the pantry, and grab something just because it's there and I'm bored. I'm starting to get better at this, by telling myself NO! I'm not hungry, stop grabbing food just because I'm bored or it's there. Sometimes it helps to say it out loud. (I only do this when I'm by myself). lol, but it seems to help. - 7/9/2013 8:26:38 PM
  • This really hit home for me. I eat for all the reasons listed. I cannot remember the last time I was truly hungry. My main take away idea is to imagine myself eating a favorite food. I am definitely going to try that one. - 7/2/2013 9:59:33 AM
  • There are some excellent strategies embedded in this article! Click on the links to learn more about how to avoid emotional eating!! - 6/28/2013 3:35:45 PM

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