Elements of Fitness – A Mother's Memoir

6 Smart Ways to Fight Hunger

Let’s face it, trying to lose fat can be hard at times.  The biggest thing that comes up time and time again is hunger.  In a perfect world, you would find a way to not be hungry and still watch your waistline shrink.   Can that really be done?   Below are 6 tips to help guide your waistline to a new low.
 

1) Eat more protein
I tell everyone to eat more when they are looking to get leaner.  Most of the time people look at me like I’m nuts.  Really?  Eat more?  Their whole lives they have heard you need to eat less and less, but can we eat more of something and still lose weight?

It turns out that protein has some very cool effects.  First off, protein helps with satiety and keeps you full longer.   I could site a bunch of studies here but try this experiment out on your own instead.   Eat 2 whole chicken breasts and the same amount of calories from Twinkies, then see how soon you are hungry again.

Two 6 oz chicken breasts have about 420 calories.  This may leave some of you doing your own episode of “Man vs Food” just to finish them.  Yet 3 Twinkies have about the same number of calories, and it would be easy to polish them off in no time (not that I know anything about that).

 

In the end, eat more protein to watch your waistline go down.
 

2) Drink more water
Not a new one but most people still don’t do it.   Good thing about water is there’s no calories.  Test out drinking more water and I bet you will drop fat without trying harder.

 

Does water temperature really matter?  If you research this you’ll see very quickly that this topic is pretty split, so if you like cold water, go for it.  If you can’t stand cold water, just go with room temperature water.   Don’t use the temperature of the water as an excuse to avoid it.   Drink more first and then worry about the temperature.
 

3) Get more essential fats
Essential fats are something many, many people are lacking in today’s world.  Plus they are involved in virtually every process and cell in the body!    Your body NEEDS them (hence the “essential” part).  Hunger is the main way the body signals you to get more nutrients (both macro and micronutrients).
The downside is that the world we live in today has non-essential fats readily accessible.  You can eat all the non-essential trans fats you want, but they will do nothing to increase the essential ones and only screw things up more!
A good source?

One of the best sources of essential fats is kril oil.  Krill or fish oil may also help with body composition too and increase muscle mass.
 

4) Exercise
Exercise is a good thing!  It changes your mood and I say this all the time:  you will never regret working out after.  So many people only choose to exercise so that they can eat what they want.  That’s not doing anything to help you shrink your waistline!  Don’t exercise to burn off that donut.

Exercise is the main way create a fat burning machine even at rest!  Give your body a donut in that process and you’ve just slowed down all functions in your body.
Most people nowadays spend most of their time seated.  Even when they exercise, it is for a small portion of their day; so we need to maximize that time by prioritizing full body exercises. Not only will this burn a ton of calories, it will work to add more muscle.  More muscle literally pulls fats and carbs out of the blood to be burned.  Your resting metabolic rate is your primarily caloric burn, so you want to have a fast, high horsepower motor.
Another benefit from exercise is related to up-regulation of the glucose transport receptors that allow glucose to enter into a cell.   (HOLD ON – DON’T FALL ASLEEP HERE)!  These receptors are located in fat and muscle tissue.   This protein is expressed only in muscle and fat cells – the major tissues in the body that respond to insulin.   This leads us into point 5…..
 

5) Eat Low Glycemic Foods to Control Insulin Throughout the Day
I’m sure you have read about this topic many times and scratched your head or fallen asleep.   But our bodies are designed to regulate bodily functions through hormones like GH, testosterone, estrogen, leptin, and neuropeptides.
While these are very important,  there are 2 key questions.
1) Do we have any direct control over them?
2) What are the main effects?
Out of these key questions we find that insulin is a major regulator hormone, and we do maintain some control over it.
Think of insulin as the “fuel selector switch” in the body.
High levels of insulin = storage mode (think of people with type 2 diabetes).
This can be storing carbs in muscle and live tissue as glycogen, or storing more fat around those love handles you hate.
The opposite works to our favor, though, as low levels of insulin = fat burning (enhanced fat metabolism).   Everything that you eat will result in some release of insulin, but we want to keep the overall response as low as possible by sticking with more proteins like meat, fish, egg, lots of non-starchy vegetables, and essential fats.
 

6) Spike insulin
You’re probably thinking I just made a typo after dicussing how important it is to control insulin.  Nope.  I still want you to keep insulin at a low level during the day overall but the one time to increase insulin temporarily is RIGHT before training since it may help enhance carbohydrate metabolism.
When you are lifting weights, your body is fueled primarily by carbs.  Remember that when insulin is high, it pushes the fuel selector switch towards carbohydrate metabolism which is great right before a strength training session.
Have a protein and carb drink about 30-60 minutes pre-training.  In addition to temporarily increasing insulin, it also helps increase muscle protein synthesis where you are literally adding proteins to muscle tissue so they are bigger and stronger.  Remember, we want to build a huge engine to burn more calories even at rest.
 

So as you know, hunger can be a vicious enemy and you are now equipped with 6 tips to beat it into submission.    Go practice them and send me feedback and your results with it.

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July 9, 2011 - Posted by | Diet and Exercise, Discipline, Eating Clean, Eating Low Carb, Exercise, My Low Carb Recipes, Nutrition, P90X Recipes, Shakeology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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