7 Stupidly Easy Ways To Crush Hunger We Bet You Haven’t Heard Yet
By Camille Noe Pagan; image from
When did it get so simple to lose weight?
Want a trimmer body and a more balanced mood? End that gnawing sensation in your stomach with seven simple solutions for feeling fuller and more gratified.
1. Enjoy the spice of life
Top your omelette with chilli sauce and spoon some atchar on your stir-fry: though no-frills food might seem more saintly, flavourful options – especially the spicy variety – are actually more satisfying than bland ones, says weight management expert Dr Lawrence Cheskin. “The concentrated burst of flavour may send a faster, more powerful satiety message to the brain,” he explains.
2. Have an apple a day
Start your meal with an apple and, research shows, you’re apt to eat less overall. The fruit’s filling fibre content (a medium one contains four to five grams, or roughly a fifth of a woman’s daily needs) may be partially to thank.
Go with the actual solid fruit: in a study published in the journal Appetite, people who sank their teeth into an apple 15 minutes before a pasta meal consumed 15 percent fewer kilojoules than those who had apple sauce or apple juice instead. “We think the apple’s volume, as well as the act of chewing, may result in a fuller stomach and longer digestion time,” explains study co-author Dr Julie Flood Obbagy.
3. Learn what full is
You might actually be full but not realise it. According to Cheskin, many people don’t even know what satiety feels like. Practise aiming for “three-quarters full”, advises dietician Lauren Slayton. And remember, the notion that your brain needs time to register fullness is true, says Cheskin: “Take 20 minutes to eat every meal and it’ll get easier to know when you should stop.”
4. Stock up on skinny fats
Fat slows the rate at which your stomach and intestines digest food – but when it comes to staving off snack attacks, not all fat is created equal. You might think the fat from a juicy steak would be more substantial than that of an avo, but it’s actually the other way around.
A study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition showed that unsaturated fat – think nuts and vegetable oils – hits the spot better than saturated fat (mostly animal fat, found in meat and dairy). In another study, muffins made with canola oil were rated as more filling than those made with butter.
5. Give in to those munchies
When you can’t get around the fact that you want to stuff your face, accept that you’re looking for volume – then choose foods that won’t do too much damage on the kilojoule front, says psychologist and author of The Thin Commandments Diet, Dr Stephen Gullo. Things you can demolish when necessary (and sometimes it just is) include raw veggies, egg-white omelettes and up to three cups of plain, air-popped popcorn.
6. Chia-fy your food
Don’t be too quick to dismiss chia seeds. Yes, they may bear an unfortunate resemblance to weevils, but they could help you shrink. Slayton tells clients to add chia seeds to salads, soups and smoothies, since they soak up water and swell during digestion. “Four hundred kilojoules of chia seeds last far longer, from a hunger perspective, than four hundred kilojoules from almost any other food,” says Slayton. Steel-cut oats and ground flaxseed also expand during digestion, helping you stay sated.
7. Multiply and conquer
Instead of a giant sandwich, have half a small one, a side salad, a piece of fruit and a cup of tea. Or pass up a big bowl of pasta in favour of a piece of seafood, sautéed veggies and a few wholewheat noodles on the side. “The meals with multiple lower-kilojoule elements look like more food, so you’re tricking your brain into being satisfied,” says Prof Susan Roberts, a psychiatrist, nutrition expert and creator of the iDiet.