Dealing With Hanger
The easiest way to handle hanger is to eat something before you get too hungry. While you may hanker for quick-fix foods, such as chocolate and potato chips, when you’re in the throes of hanger, junk foods generally induce large rises in blood-glucose levels that come crashing down fast.
Ultimately, they may leave you feeling hangrier. So think nutrient-rich, natural foods that help satisfy hunger for as long as possible, without excess kilojoules.
Eating as soon as you are hungry may not always be possible. This may be the case during long shifts at work, for instance, or through religious fasts such as Ramadan, or during weight-loss diets that involve severe energy restriction (such as intermittent fasting diets). All of these should only be done if your doctor has given you the all-clear.
In these cases, it can help to remember that, with time, your glucose counter-regulatory response will kick in and your blood-glucose levels will stabilise. Also, when you go without food, your body starts breaking down its own fat stores for energy, some of which are converted by your body into ketones, a product of fat metabolism. Ketones are thought to help keep your hunger under control because your brain can use ketones in place of glucose for fuel.
A final – and very civilised – way of handling hanger is to suggest that difficult situations be dealt with after food, not before!
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