|Posted on April 18, 2013 at 9:40 PM|
Have you ever started a very low calorie diet all enthusiastic and sure you were going to crush it, lose a bunch of weight and live happily ever after? Day one started off pretty good: you confidently breezed through breakfast with half of a grapefruit and three bran flakes and you heroically survived lunch crunching on celery sticks and half a can of tuna. You skipped the handful of almonds you're allowed to snack on because you're hardcore and believe the fewer calories you consume, the faster you will lose weight. Then dinner rolled around and suddenly you turned into the human equivalent of a vacuum cleaner, sucking up everything edible in sight--especially if it contained a lot of fat, sugar and/or salt. What happened? You battled hunger and lost. Hunger always wins because it's a survival mechanism that lets you know it's time to get some calories to fuel your body. Getting too few calories makes your body think you're starving and it kicks into calorie conservation mode and slows your metabolism way down. It's preparing for a famine. This is bad news if your goal is fat loss.
Your body requires a minimum amount of calories to survive (1200 calories for sedentary women and 1500 calories for sedentary men; but, of course, you are not sedentary or you are about to become active soon!). If you don't get the minimum amount of calories you need for the day (and this does vary according to factors such as height, weight and activity level), your body takes over. You experience this take-over as hunger and, in many cases, it escalates to extreme hunger that cannot be ignored. If you attempt to do battle with extreme hunger, you will ultimately lose. You will experience defeat as a feeding frenzy that racks up a huge number of calories. Your body will recoup the lost calories plus interest.
The good news is this doesn't have to be the case! Here are some ways you can avoid a battle with hunger and boost your fat loss efforts:
Start adopting and practicing these habits one at a time. It doesn't have to happen overnight. Just start. Make feeding your body quality fuel on a consistent basis a top priority and you will avoid hunger battles and be in line with your fat loss goals.